Lebanon is a small Mediterranean country with amazing culture and history. The mixture of Western and Eastern traditions gives it a special charm, and allows tourists to look into the Islamic world without the restrictions associated with religious norms adopted in neighboring countries. Here you can enjoy the beaches, and active nightlife, and the heritage of ancient cultures and empires, which have been visited by many in Lebanon. A variety of climatic zones opens up almost unlimited opportunities for a variety of outdoor activities. In early spring and late autumn, you can enjoy the ski resorts and the warm Mediterranean Sea on the same day.
Geography of Lebanon
According to itypemba, the Lebanese Republic is located in the Middle East, in the eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea. Lebanon borders Israel in the south and Syria in the north and east. Part of the border with the Golan Heights, occupied by Israeli troops, is currently a disputed territory. The total area of the country is 10452 km. sq. Most of the country is covered by mountains, with the exception of the Bekaa Valley in the northeast and the Mediterranean coast. The largest river, Litania, is the main source of fresh water for the southern part of the country.
The area of Lebanon is 10,452 km. sq., occupies the 161st place in the world by area.
3 925 502
The national currency is the Lebanese pound (LBP)
Official language – Arabic
Visa to Lebanon
To visit the country for a period not exceeding 48 hours, a visa is not required. A tourist visa for staying in the country for up to 1 month is issued directly at the border crossing. You must provide a passport valid for at least 3 months after leaving the country, as well as fill out a migration card. When filling out the card, it is not recommended to indicate free activity as a profession (dancer, poet, etc.) If the passport contains a valid Israeli visa or marks on crossing the border with Israel, entry may be denied. At Beirut International Airport, a visa is issued free of charge, at other border crossing points, a visa costs 25,000 livs. pounds.
Weather in Lebanon
The climate in Lebanon is Mediterranean, with humid and hot summers and cool winters. The best time to visit the coast is from June to mid-September. At this time, the weather is sunny and hot, although there is strong humidity on the coast. From October to May, the ski season opens, the temperature in the mountains drops below zero, snow falls. In general, there are no problems with water in the country, with the exception of the northeast, where the climate is quite arid, so dust and sandstorms often occur.
Lebanon is a small country, it takes only 3 hours to cross it. The only public transport that you can use to move around the country is buses. Buses depart from the Charles Helou bus station in Beirut to various cities in the country and to Syria. Also popular are fixed-route taxis, which can accommodate 5 people. If you decide to use this type of transport, be careful – “pirate” taxis can drive around the city, which significantly inflate the fare. Taxis are also popular and their prices are moderate.
Currency exchange in Lebanon
The official currency is the Lebanese pound or the Lebanese lira. The exchange rate for January 2012 is 1 USD = 1,507 LBP. You can exchange money in banks that work from Monday to Friday from 8.30 to 12.30 and on Saturdays from 9.00 to 14.00, Sunday is a day off. Also, money can be exchanged at street money changers, which, as a rule, offer a more favorable rate, but here you need to beware of counterfeiters. US dollars are also accepted in many places. In Beirut, most shops accept credit cards. There should be no problems with withdrawing cash from the card either. Prices, with rare exceptions, are negotiable. If you stay at the hotel for more than 3 days, you can negotiate a discount.
240V/50Hz (European sockets).
About 30-40% of the population are Christians of various persuasions (Catholics, Orthodox), another 40% are Shia Muslims, Sunnis and Ismailis are also represented in Lebanon. The peaceful coexistence of the two main faiths is protected by the political structure of the country: the president must always be a Christian, and the prime minister a Shiite Muslim. Seats in the national parliament are distributed according to confessional quotas.
The threat of terrorist attacks remains in Lebanon. In case of aggravation of the political situation in the country, it is recommended to refrain from visiting high-risk areas: Tripoli, Saida, territories near the border with Israel. The crime rate in the country is quite low. You can move around the center of Beirut even at night. Of the most frequent crimes, it is worth noting motorcyclists who snatch bags from their hands, and taxi drivers who threaten tourists with weapons and extort money. Also, women are not recommended to visit unfamiliar areas alone. Despite the fact that the Lebanese are quite liberal in their clothing, in the Muslim areas of Beirut, in the south of the country and in the Bekaa Valley, women should avoid tight-fitting and transparent clothes, and shorts for men. In general, it is recommended to dress discreetly, women – to cover their heads with a scarf. In some areas, tourists are given capes to cover their hands to the wrist and legs to the ankle. Before photographing local residents, you must ask permission. Photographing military installations and transport infrastructure is not recommended. In a conversation with the Lebanese, it is better to avoid the topic of politics and ethnic characteristics of different population groups. It is also not recommended to actively gesticulate, many gestures familiar in Russia may seem offensive.
No special vaccinations are required to enter the country. Although health insurance is not a prerequisite for entering the country, tourists are advised to purchase it in Russia or immediately after arriving in Lebanon. Only first aid is provided free of charge.