Welcome to Beirut
The largest city in Lebanon - its capital, Beirut.
Beirut - one of the oldest cities in the world, the first mention of the city dates back to 1500 BC. Beirut is located on the Mediterranean coast on a hilly peninsula of St. George. For Beirut typical subtropical climate, hot summers. Therefore, the best time to visit the city - spring and autumn, when there is no sweltering heat. Beach season continues in Beirut from April to November. In addition, in spring and autumn reduced the number of tourists, therefore, your vacation will be more relaxed.
The city is a large sea port, and the port of Beirut - the largest in the whole eastern Mediterranean coast. In addition, a large shopping Beirut, cultural and tourist center of Lebanon. Here are the offices of many international organizations.
Beirut is called differently. For a scenic location on the Mediterranean coast at the foot of high mountains called it the pearl of the Middle East. Paying tribute to the prevailing business here, called Beirut Mediterranean Switzerland. Fascinated by the most fashionable and beautiful women in the East, great shopping, European architecture, cozy cafes and restaurants, consider that Beirut is the most suitable name Paris of the East.
Introduction to Beirut
Introduction to Beirut is best to start with conducive for walks, favorite Lebanese place - the waterfront "Cornish". Here on one side - a beautiful sea view, on the other side - the rich houses, restaurants, cafes and clubs. If you go through it from east to west, it can be considered the beginning of the street Mina al-Hosn, where the towering five-story club hotel "Saint George" situated on the bank of cozy bay yacht club.
This is followed by blocks of Ain ??al-Mreysi, after which you get to the beach at American University. After another 2 km - a complex of hotel "Riviera", which has its own beach and maritime center. After 300 meters turn to the embankment Avenue Charles de Gaulle. Not far from this place, on a hill - the famous Beirut lighthouse "Manara", which gave name to the entire region. What follows is a series of restaurants, cafes, private beach clubs, the largest of which, "Long Beach Club" and "Sporting Beach Club" located next to Luna Park.
The road goes up the embankment to Rausch. Here, a high rocky coast and a few meters away from it two rock islets - is the famous Pigeon Rocks, Beirut, which goes into a lot of romantic legend. After 200 meters, begins the sandy beaches, known as "Rafiq Hariri beach."
In the heart of Beirut's Hamra district is located - the main commercial and financial part of the capital. The region has most of the shops, banks, restaurants and cinemas.
Walk through central Beirut is best to start with the Grand Palace (Grand Serai), built in 1853 for the residence of the Ottoman authorities. Not far from the Grand Serai - the clock tower, built in 1897, such a tower in the late 19th century considered it necessary to have every self-respecting city Ottoman Empire. Between the Grand Palace and the street Riad al-Solh - a site of archaeological excavations. Here are found Roman baths. The complex included in the "Archaeological Park" of Beirut.
The heart of downtown is the Place de l'Etoile (Star Square) - indeed, like the rays of the stars in all parts of the city streets diverge. Here in the traditional location of the Lebanese Parliament, nearly two thousand years ago, the Roman town was situated forum. To the south of the area visible Roman columns, there was a trade area - the agora, where he found a large number of ruins of buildings of the Roman era. For columns towering cathedral church of St. George and St. Elias, a hundred meters from where - the area of ??the Martyrs, whose name recalls the leaders of the revolt against the execution of the Ottoman dominion.
At the turn of the century in the southern part of the Ottoman authorities have leased a large plot of land for the racetrack, whose construction began after the First World War. Racetrack today - it's a very popular place for residents of Beirut. Near the racecourse - an impressive building the Ottoman era - "Pines", acquired by the French Government as the embassy residence. Pine Grove, located south - the green and a large fleet of the Lebanese capital.
Keeper of the Mediterranean culture – Beirut
Beirut - one of the cultural centers of the Mediterranean. The city has approximately 20 cinemas and a lot of theaters. The most famous and most interesting of them - the theater, "Caracalla" in the productions of which were intertwined musical and dance traditions of East and classical ballet in Europe and Russia.
Beirut festival of classical music and the art of opera is held every spring at the "Al-Bustan". Within 5 weeks here are the famous singers and orchestras from around the world.
Museum of Beirut have always been famous not so much of their exhibits, as their diversity and uniqueness.
The Lebanese National Museum, the facade and interior is done in Egyptian style, opened in 1943 in the hall of the first floor are exhibits of Roman-Byzantine period. Among them the famous mosaic "Eight Wise Men" of a Roman villa in Baalbek, which embodies an imaginary debate of philosophers who lived in different times.
Another, also from Baalbek, is the scene of birth and childhood of Alexander of Macedon. A significant portion of the first floor is devoted to one and the 2nd millennium BC On the second floor - exhibits relating to different periods of history: bronze figurines found in Byblos, daily utensils Phoenicians, gold jewelry from Sidon.
Private museum Sursok, located in one of the elegant buildings of the early 20th century, was opened as a center for contemporary art. Here there are historical exhibits. For example, 10-volume Bible, printed in Lebanon in 7 languages ??under the auspices of Cardinal Richelieu. In addition to the permanent exhibition at the museum holds art exhibitions overseas.
The Archaeological Museum of the American University of the magnificent collection of artifacts as Lebanon and from different parts of the Middle East.
Where to eat?
Prices for food in Beirut - Lebanon and in general - not so low as it would like. But everything is so tasty that the money spent on food is not important. The average meal in a restaurant will cost between $ 8 to $ 30 per person (depending on the institution and your appetite).
Many restaurants and cafes in Beirut district of Ashrafieh. There are lanes and near the Square Star. In many places you can order food to take away. It will cost you less than eating the same, but in the restaurant.
Also well represented various fast food. From McDonald's and KFC to the local "Burger House", which you can eat sandwiches with cottage cheese, chicken, pea cutlets (falyafelem), kebabs, etc. The cost of these sandwiches - in the range $ 4-5. You will realize that it's not expensive, seeing the size of the finished product. One is enough to feed the starving Europeans, more than two can not eat any European.
In many parts of the country offers a variety of ways cooked fish. The Lebanese know how to make it great. Be sure to order a "mix-grill" - a "set" of various meats (chicken, lamb and kebabs).
Salads, hummus (crushed chickpeas), mutabbal (eggplant dish), etc. included in the traditional set of Lebanese appetizers - Mezze. Snacks are ordered the entire company. There are so many that if you overdo it in their eating, then your stomach is no space for a main dish.
Do not forget the freshly squeezed juices. The cost of 400 grams of juice - from 2,000 to 2,500 lire to the street and around 4000 - in restaurants. Do not forget about tipping, which are usually left in the cafes and restaurants. Decided to leave about 10% of the total bill.
Motley Nightlife Lebanon offers a blend of fine treats and all sorts of entertainment. Here is a flavor of local bands that play for guests enjoying a special evening menu, and international entertainers, the corresponding super-menu.
Even the 1960's and 1970's, Lebanon was known for its nightlife, and today more than ever. In the Christian quarter of Beirut nightlife takes place with many bars, restaurants, night clubs and discos.
Explore the nightlife of Beirut, where Lebanese ingenuity has teamed up with the competition to create a meeting place for the big night. Disco filled with young people ready to dance without end. In the nightclub offers a variety of entertainment, including the popular oriental dance "belly", the eastern bands and singers.
Do some shopping and just stroll through the picturesque streets of Beirut's best in Burj Hammoud - an area of cheap shops in the Armenian quarter. Here are the gold markets. In the street of Hamra can buy clothes, shoes and leather goods. And finally, for exquisite shopping - Ward, the area rich in shops.
In Beirut, a beautiful selection of exotic souvenirs: hookahs, traditional coffee pots, inlaid with pearls, furniture, jewelry boxes, prayer beads of various materials, statues made ??of wood aromatic cedar of Lebanon, national dress, embroidered with gold thread, hand-woven rugs. All of the above - with a charming oriental flavor. Popular and traditional Lebanese souvenirs made ??of wood and clay. In Beirut, there are stores that specialize in selling ethnic handmade goods, such as "Artisans du Liban".
Beirut - a city which is difficult to say goodbye
Thus, Beirut - a perfect place for lovers of a different kind of vacation, everyone will find something interesting and attractive. And common to all will be unforgettable impressions of this extraordinary city that has survived so many varied events, upheavals and conflicts. Not in vain now Beirut called "the city that never die."