5 Awesome Hiking Spots

by LBTAdmin

You don’t need to be a professional hiker to enjoy Lebanon’s numerous trails. Jad Abou Arrage, a rural tourism specialist, rounds up a selection of hikes to challenge you this season.

1. THE IRON OAK FOREST, AKKAR DISTRICT

Level: Easy

Length: 5km

Lowest point: 1,345m

Highest point: 1,528m

THE IRON OAK FOREST, AKKAR DISTRICT

THE IRON OAK FOREST, AKKAR DISTRICT

Photo by Raed Farram

This trail takes you to one of the most beautiful forests in Lebanon, characterized by iron oak trees which rise to a height of 30m. A warm palette of colors permeates the forest, providing nature photography enthusiasts with a mesmerizing vista from which to draw inspiration. End your hike at sunset to experience the magnificent glow of golden leaves as they rustle gently in the breeze.

THE IRON OAK FOREST, AKKAR DISTRICT

THE IRON OAK FOREST, AKKAR DISTRICT

Those wishing to extend their hike in the region can complete Section 2 on the Lebanon Mountain Trail between Tashea and Qemmamine, taking in the diversity of Akkar’s juniper, cedar, oak and fir forests, and the astonishing views of Mount Makmel and Jabal Aarouba.

Visit lebanontrail.org for more information.

WHERE TO SLEEP

QEMMAMINE

Abou Draa Guesthouse (03 817312), Ali Issa Guesthouse (70 422453), Abou Moustapha Guesthouse (03 148668)

TASHEA

Abou Marwan Guesthouse (06 895661), Deir Mar Jerjes (03 810355)

LOCAL GUIDES

QEMMAMINE

Hussein Abu Draa (03 817312), Mohamed Taleb (70 937284)

FNAIDEQ

Mohamad El Kik (03 526110), Ahmed El Kik (70 413681)

2. KFOUR SPRINGS TRAIL, KESERWAN DISTRICT

Level: Easy

Length: 6km

Lowest point: 505m

Highest point: 785m

 KFOUR SPRINGS TRAIL, KESERWAN DISTRICT

KFOUR SPRINGS TRAIL, KESERWAN DISTRICT

The trail is named after the five water sources of the village: Breich’s source, Mikhael’s source, El Kroum’s source, Al Sefsafi’s source and Henbles source. At the start of the trail, hikers can enjoy a scenic view of Jounieh Bay and Beirut’s northern coastline before commencing their walk along the stream and their hike through the dense forest typified by pine, oak, cypress, olive and fruit trees.

 KFOUR SPRINGS TRAIL, KESERWAN DISTRICT

KFOUR SPRINGS TRAIL, KESERWAN DISTRICT

A peaceful picnic area with tables and benches is located next to the main water source, providing a perfect spot to take a break and absorb the natural beauty of the surrounding area.

LOCAL GUIDES

Contact the municipality (09 788707)

3. HORSH EHDEN NATURE RESERVE, ZGHARTA DISTRICT

Level: All levels

Length: 2km to 12km

Lowest point: 1,200m

Highest point: 2,000m

HORSH EHDEN NATURE RESERVE, ZGHARTA DISTRICT

HORSH EHDEN NATURE RESERVE, ZGHARTA DISTRICT

Horsh Ehden is Lebanon’s most diverse nature reserve, with its rich mix of conifers, deciduous and evergreen broadleaf trees, and its varied terrain. It serves as a prime location for ecotourism activities and a popular destination for those interested in bird watching.

HORSH EHDEN NATURE RESERVE, ZGHARTA DISTRICT

HORSH EHDEN NATURE RESERVE, ZGHARTA DISTRICT

 WHERE TO SLEEP

La Reserve Ehden (06 561092), Ehden Country Club (06 560651/2/3), Abchi Hotel (06 561101/2), La Mairie Hotel (06 560108).

LOCAL GUIDES

Contact the reserve (70 601601)

4. HADATH EL JEBBEH FOREST, BCHARRE DISTRICT

Level: Medium

Length: 9km

Lowest point: 1,500m

Highest point: 1,950m

 

HADATH EL JEBBEH FOREST, BCHARRE DISTRICT

HADATH EL JEBBEH FOREST, BCHARRE DISTRICT

The trail begins at the main entrance of the Hadath el Jebbeh cedars forest, with a pleasant walk on footpaths and dirt roads between the old cedar trees. On the way you’ll pass by the Ain Jeara water source and cross the area of Sahlet el Atcha. From there, turn back to the starting point to enjoy a scenic view of Mount Makmel and Bcharre.

HADATH EL JEBBEH FOREST, BCHARRE DISTRICT

HADATH EL JEBBEH FOREST, BCHARRE DISTRICT

WHERE TO SLEEP

Auberge Hadath el Jebbeh (03 220756)

LOCAL GUIDES

Contact the municipality (71 680222)

5. BENTAEL NATURE RESERVE, MOUNT LEBANON

Level: Easy

Length: 4km

Lowest point: 335m

Highest point: 560m

BENTAEL NATURE RESERVE, MOUNT LEBANON

BENTAEL NATURE RESERVE, MOUNT LEBANON

The reserve provides a network of short distance trails connected through a dense Mediterranean forest of pine and oak trees. High fauna and flora biodiversity characterize Bentael Nature Reserve, making it a popular destination for nature lovers. Along the trails you can enjoy the views of several vertical cliffs of bare rock with numerous small, natural caves including the St. John’s rock-cut hermitage and chapel, which date back to the 12th century.

BENTAEL NATURE RESERVE, MOUNT LEBANON

BENTAEL NATURE RESERVE, MOUNT LEBANON

LOCAL GUIDES

Contact the reserve (09 738330)

Photos by: Jad Abou Arrage
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