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It was called the Paris of the east for a long time, until the civil war started in 1975 when 27 Palestinian civilians where killed by an attack on a bus. After the civil war which ended early during the 90's of the last century, Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, struggled back to become one of the most pleasant places to live in the Middle East, settled along the Mediterranean coastline. Wandering along the Corniche, watching and being watched, is a pleasant activity at first light or in the late afternoon when the sun goes down again. Another attraction near, or actually in the sea, are the famous Pigeon rocks, which lie immediately east of the city. You will feel like being in a modern western city when drinking a beer on of the terraces in the centre of Beirut. But just a kilometre further away you will still be struck by some buildings destructed by the civil war, on both sides of the famous Green Line, which was the dividing line between Muslims and Christians.
May 1 sees the observation of this public holiday which is recognized as Labor Day elsewhere.
Taking place annually around August and September – the exact date is determined by the lunar calendar – Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan and the end of the Islamic fast. This public holiday is characterized by food, gift exchanges and shopping for new clothes.
Observed November 22, Independence Day marks the date in 1943 when the country gained freedom from France after a 23-year period of rule. This nation-wide celebration sees most people enjoy a day off work, military parades, and locals displaying the Lebanese flag outside their homes.
Beirut has a typical Mediterranean climate with generally warm, dry and sunny summers and relatively mild but wet winters. Average days in summer (June - September) are between 28 °C and 32 °C, while nights average around 23 °C. With winds blowing from the desert to the east and south, temperatures in May and June can rise to over 40 °C! December to March is winter, with temperatures between 16 °C and 19 °C during the day, and between 11 °C and 13 °C at night on average. June to September has hardly any rain at all, while November to February is the wettest time of year, with 130 to 190 mm of rain a month, spread out over 12 to 15 days each month.
All international flights arrive at the Beirut Rafic Hariri International Airport (BEY). There are direct flights to a wide range of cities in the Middle East, Asia and Europe. The main carriers are local Middle East airlines, Air France, KLM, Lufthansa and British Airways. KLM and Air France have direct flights to Amsterdam and Paris respectively. Also, Gulf Air and Emirates have good connections with Lebanon and through connections to Australia.
There are no trains within Lebanon at the moment.
|Embassy Hotel||Makdessi Street Facing LibanPost - Hamra||Hotel||-|
|Mady's||azirian building gemmayze 6th floor above frigoliban||GUESTHOUSE||90|
|Mayflower Hotel||Yafet st. Hamra||Hotel||80|
|Riviera Beirut Hotel||Corniche El Manara||HOTEL||-|
|Seaside Furnished Flats||George Post Street Ain-Mreisseh||Apartment||-|
|Suite Hotel Beirut||Facing St. Georges Square Jal El-Dib||Hotel||-|
|Napoli Hotel||Hamra Main Street||Hotel||-|
|Mövenpick Hotel & Resort Beirut||General de Gaulle Avenue Raouche 2038||Hotel||-|
|Coral Suites Al Hamra||Rue Baalbek – Hamra||Apartment||-|
Lebanon offers fairly good internet services throughout the country, with internet cafés and (free) wifi quite common in Beirut and some of the larger cities and popular tourist places.
See also International Telephone Calls
The international telephone code is 961.
MTC Touch Mobile phone operator offers a GSM card for $15 including a $10 credit (The START plan). Internet access starts at $10 for up to 100 MByte in a month. Alfa is another mobile phone operator which offers several prepaid plans ranging from $10 to $68. Like MTC Touch, internet access starts at $10 for a 500 MByte bundle per month.
Libanpost offers postal services in the country. Post offices are open Monday to Friday from 8:00am to 5:00pm and Saturday from 8:00 am to 1:30pm. Kiosks at shopping centers keep longer hours and are open every day. They offer track and trace services and sending a postcard or letter is fairly cheap and reliable. For sending a pacakge, you might use international companies like TNT, DHL, UPS or FedEx, as they are fast and not much more expensive.
We don't currently have any Travel Helpers for Beirut
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