With its demographic characteristics, nestling peoples with various ethnic origins, and its cosmopolitan structure, embodying traditional and modern architecture, and its delicate unique cuisine and mysterious atmosphere, Beirut is a Middle East country that is so fascinating to convince one that s/he lives in a different dimension. Having used to be called once as the Paris in the Middle East, Beirut shines out as a multicultural metropolis that melts the Mediterranean and the Middle East characteristics in the same pot.
Beirut, the capital city of Lebanon, also ranks among the distinguished trading centers in the world since it has the biggest main port in the country. This rooted and ancient city, which dates back to approximately 5 thousand years ago, is named after the word "Be'erot" which means "Wells" in Hebrew. Having been announced as a Beta World City and having been re-built following the Lebanese Civil War, suffered between 1975 and 1990, Beirut virtually fascinates its visitors with its energy and authentic characteristics despite its such exhausted and worn out history.
The city, which has the characteristics of a center of attraction also in tourism thanks to its modern and cosmopolitan characteristics at the present, makes its mark with its rich and interwoven cultural diversity as well. Beirut is extremely rich also in terms of the places to visit. Fascinating virtually the ones, who see it for the first time, with a broad array of intermingling colors, tastes, textures and a distinctive mysticism, Beirut also demonstrates that it is an exceptional city thanks to its stylized venues with a unique touch.
Having not opted to become an offended and reserved city despite the war tragedy it has suffered, Beirut makes you feel its aura that is tranquil but full of life energy just at once. Chasing after the fascination spreading from Beirut, you can make a tour to be imprinted in your memories and discover the city down to the last detail. We prepared a mini Beirut travel guide for the ones who would happen to visit Beirut. Here you have Beirut with the most crucial points and spots...
The City Reborn From Its Ashes
Beirut has been erected by honoring its authentic characteristics while being renovated following the Lebanese civil war. The spread of the church bells and azan sounds all across the city in harmony is another niceness. You can sure discover a city the best by walking, and you can enjoy this city, which is ecstatic and where the time elapses gently, by walking around in Beirut step by step.
Being commonly Arabic-speaking, Beirut is a city that is under the influence of the Mediterranean climate. With Lebanese Pound as its currency, the city is too hot in summers and dry cold in winters. So, spring and autumn months are ideal to sightsee in Beirut. You can tour Beirut extensively in 4-5 days. You can readily tour the city by walking since The must-visit places in the city center are close to each other.
Where to Tour in Beirut
Being a considerably sophisticated city in terms of tourism, Beirut is a city that promises to leave marks in the memory of its visitors thanks to it cultural richness and fascinating buildings. Let's see where to tour and visit.
The National Museum of Beirut
The museum, where artifacts are exhibited, has been opened to visit in 1942. About 100 thousand artifacts in this museum have been started to be collected following the World War I. The National Museum of Beirut is one of the primary components of the cultural heritage of Lebanon.
Beirut Harissa Hill
Located at an altitude of 660 meters, Harissa Hill can be reached by cable car from the city center. The bronze statue with a weight of 15 tons and at the hill that nestles the Maronite Cathedral and the Virgin Mary Statue within its borders is regarded as the protector of Lebanon symbolically. Seen from bird's eye-view from this hill, the city panorama of Beirut delivers an outstanding beauty.
Beirut Al Omari Mosque
When they captured Beirut in 1291, the Mamelukes have turned this building which used to be a church into a mosque and changed its name to Al-Omari. Being of Romanesque style, the building has ruined somewhat during the civil war, however, it was restored once again to a magnificent silhouette upon the restorations.
Being one of the places, reflecting the multicultural and layered texture of Beirut the best, Burj Hammud is a special district where rather the Armenian Catholic community resides. Being a district, where the Armenian and Lebanon cultures have been interwoven, Burj Hammud is a center of attraction also for the tourists visiting the city.
Hamra, a neighborhood populated intensely by the Muslim people, is an extremely attractive popular location in touristic aspect as well. The shops, restaurants and coffee shops at this neighborhood add an energetic characteristic to the city. Also, you can have a swim in the Hamra coastline if it is summer.
What to Eat in Beirut?
In Beirut, where you can also taste the meals specific to the Lebanese cuisine, you can find a perfect synthesis of the Mediterranean cuisine and the Middle East cuisine. Sea food, meat dishes, olive oil dishes and falafel, mukadami, mutabbal, humus and tabbule, the most famous appetizers of the Middle East cuisine, can be listed as the delicacies that appeal to you taste.