Hamra Street, facing Eldorado Center, Beirut, Lebanon
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One of the murals
A view of the campanile from below
Roman columns of courtyard - Sep 2010
Anyone been to Mzaar ski resort?
Happy New Year, all :) Let's get travelling!
I like trying the not-so-international resorts that still retain some individual character.
Research has revealed the transfer time to this place is under 1 hour!
Is the best option hiring a car, or are there buses going all the way?
I prefer the later, as it's more relaxing & I get to experience life of the locals (commuting), etc.
Any help/advice greatly seeked & appreciated :)
Choosing Lebanon would allow me to visit Tyre. I'm into history too!!
Re: Anyone been to Mzaar ski resort?
Thanks to global Warming so far this year not a slice of ice or snow has fallen in Lebanon, this is the first time ever so if you are planning to see snow and go skiing in Mzaar Ski resort make sure it snows first ( I never thought I'd say such a thing in January but sadly it's true ) .
Taking a Bus or taxi is your best option to get to Mzaar ski resort because of the roads and the ice that might be forming on the roads so it would be best to hire a taxi or take a bus there.
If you email the Mzaar Ski resort site you can get all the info you need on how to get there and if they have buses to pick you up :
website : http://www.skimzaar.com/
If History is what you're into then Tyre and Baalbak are a must see.
I hope this helps, Happy Travelling ...
Travel Tips for Beirut
Hamra is the main commercial district of Beirut, with rue Hamra the city's answer to London's Oxford Street. Rue Hamra and the streets immediately parallel and perpendicular to it are the center of all things retail in this city, with everything from hole-in-the-wall shops selling lottery tickets to Starbucks (who would have thought there would be a Starbucks in Beirut! There are several!) It's extremely bustling, and the place to buy absolutely anything. The pricey boutiques are all moving to the spiffy new downtown, but there doesn't seem to be much chance of rue Hamra losing its status as the place for all Lebanese people to shop.
From Hamra to downtown, church
When we walked from the Hamra area to downtown Beirut we saw this lovely undamaged church just at the edge of the devastated area near Holiday Inn.
We couln't find out the name of the church. We did not visit the church, we just liked it to have a look at it from the outside.
On my first visit to Lebanon in March 2005, I had the opportunity to see the country during interesting times. Demonstrations were being held at Place des Martyrs on a daily basis in which people demanded "the truth" about the assassination of Rafic Hariri a month earlier. It was wonderful to see the Lebanese fully (or mostly?) united for the first time in decades, regardless of religion or sect (see attached photo)! At the time, Lebanon was still under the control of Syria, which was allegedly blamed - justly or not? - for the assassination of Hariri. The demonstrations ultimately led to the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon, and although everyone rejoiced, the untold reality is that the Syrian presence had helped to maintain a certain stability and a controlled peace in the country. Unfortunately, Lebanon then slowly slipped into instability which culminated in 2006 with a full on Israeli invasion, followed by a political crisis which only began to be resolved at the end of 2008. Although some tensions remain, the situation is now fortunately very peaceful (as of early 2010) and inshallah (as the Lebanese say) it will continue.
Ah, who doesn't know that famous rock, I took you to that place, it is romantic, we took so many beautiful pictures, and we had an Arabic real coffee, ah... almost, how I wished you could try it in a real small ceramic cups, not the plastic disposable ones... but it is ok, now you know it, and it is only the first time, when you come again, you will have it with its ritual!
Mghara, or Grotto, is a topographical denomination that you'll see quite a bit in the mountains to the south and west of the capital, as there is no shortage of interesting geological formations to fascinate the visitor. This particular cave is not as big as some other caves, but it does have a number of chambers with interesting stalactite and stalagmite formations, as well as a variable water level that results in different patterns of colouring along the walls. The entire cave is submerged during the summer months when the mountain snows melt, and is accessible in its entirety during the winter months. There are guides will explain the different aspects of the caves and their geological significance for the region, to visitors. This is a pretty popular destination for families, particularly those with small children, and the only thing to beware of is the slippery floors - so wear good shoes! It is located south-east of the capital.
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