According to CEOWorld, the top tourist countries in the world are, in order, France, the United States, Spain, China, and Italy. All undeniably wonderfully beautiful countries, each with its own particular allure to travelers from around the world. The cultures, the cuisines, the sights and sounds of each country add to the popularity, justifying each nation’s place on the list of the most popular travel destinations.
Absent from the list (which, notably, only went to 10) was my home country and the place I currently call home–Lebanon. Understandably, parts of the country are more dangerous than others, much like most any big city or large country in the world. And, like those cities, while visiting Lebanon you must pay attention to your surroundings and generally exercise safe habits.
The payoff, should you decide to visit the country, is incredible. It’s like nothing you’ve seen before, each step through the city unlocks a trove of culture, history and fantastic adventure around you.
An Endless Array of Activities
If you’ve been to Lebanon during the afternoon you’ve likely seen some of the most beautiful and picturesque beaches the world over. Lebanese beaches are some of the most commonly trafficked spots in the country, and for good reason. If beaches don’t interest you, try visiting one of the many, many cafes, galleries and historical sites (more on this later) around the country.
At night, the scene around Lebanon changes, and the nightlife takes form. The bars and clubs that line the streets of Beirut are huge attractions for many tourists who want to experience everything Lebanon has to offer. With such a huge number of attractions throughout the city, it’s common for prices to be low and service to be great, as the competition for customers is fierce.
Remember just a bit ago when I mentioned the draw of Lebanon during the day comes partially in the form of an amazing collection of sights and sounds around the country? Well, here we are again–the landscapes, scenery and potential for exploration around Lebanon are limitless.
If you’ve followed this blog in the past or follow me on Twitter then you’ve probably seen some of the photos I’ve taken in and around the city. Lebanon has incredible sights both natural and manmade stretched out across the country.
See a few of my favorites below.
The History and Culture
Another draw of visiting Lebanon comes in the form of the vast number of historical sights and sounds that you’ll find throughout the country. The cities of Baalbek and Byblos are cities that are packed with rich and diverse histories worth exploring for yourself.
If you’re more interested in a one-stop shop for learning and experiencing the history of the country, try the National Museum in Beirut, which dates back to 1942 and includes historical artifacts from long, long ago.
The Food and Drink
Though this does, to a degree, go hand-in-hand with the nightlife, the activities to do, and the history of the country, Lebanon nevertheless has a reputation for being the producer of some of the best wines and foods in the world. Across the country you’ll find more than 30 different wineries, each with their own unique allure and specialties.
The food speaks for itself–you’ve probably had hummus before, you’ve probably tried baklava and you’ve undoubtedly at least heard of falafel. And while you may have experienced them before, you haven’t experienced Lebanese falafel, baklava or hummus. It’s in a league of its own and needs to be tried.