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Best attractions to visit in Beirut

21. Grand Sérail - Beirut

Grand Sérail

Grand Sérail, which is also known as the Beirut’s Government Palace, is a building built during the Ottoman Empire. Since the building acts as the government headquarters these days, it is not open for public. However, the stunning Ottoman architecture and the Hamidiyyah Clock Tower never fail to catch the attention of the visitors. The history of this great monument dates back to the early 19th century when the Egyptians decided to set up their headquarters on the top of Sérail Hill in order to keep watch for the Ottoman armies. However, the Ottoman Empire managed to recapture authority over the city and constructed their barracks on the hill. A clock tower was also built in 1897 to celebrate the coronation of Beirut’s Sultan. Today, the 25 meters tall clock tower is commonly known as the Hamidiyyah Clock Tower and has become a famous tourist attraction in Beirut. As already mentioned, the interior of the building is not open to visitors. But the facades and the walls of the building make for great photos. There are also a number of restaurants in close proximity of Grand Sérail where visitors can enjoy a heart-warming Mediterranean meal after a long day exploring Beirut’s architectural heritage.

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22. Riad el-Solh Statue - Beirut

Riad el-Solh Statue

Riad El Solh was Lebanon's Prime Minister when Lebanon gained its independence in 1943. After the war, the statue pedestal was rebuilt and a garden area was developed around it.

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23. Beirut Horse Racing - Beirut

Beirut Horse Racing

The horse racing scene in Beirut has always been a tradition after the Roman era. The roman Hippodrome in Beirut was discovered in 1988 and is the largest hippodrome out of the 5 in the region. The cultural minister had the site listed officially as one of the general inventory of historic buildings in 2009. There are daily horse racing and the betting are heated up on certain events, so if you are up for something similar to a Thai cock fight on a larger scale and the adrenaline challenges the Beirut Horse Racing track is the place to go. Do check out their website for race timings and info about the horses participating.

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24. Ramlet Al-Baida Public Beach - Beirut

Ramlet Al-Baida Public Beach

Ramlet Al-Baida Public Beach has always been a quick getaway for the nearby city locals and families. It’s a corniche as well were you could find fine dining and authentic restaurants and coffee shops across the street. Fisherman are always throwing their baits towards the water and local down to earth guys throw theirs at the woman walking! Relaxing on a bench with some simple street food and local beer is recommended to watch the show or go for a jog, a badminton game or even join the wise old men for a game of chess. It’s a corniche that has enough entertainment from beginning to end.

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25. Evangelical Church - Beirut

Evangelical Church

The Evangelical Church is the first Arabic Protestant congregation of the Middle East which is located in Beirut in Lebanon. This church happens to be the administrative center and headquarters of nine churches which work under the single name of NEUL i.e. the National Evangelical Union of Lebanon. The first Evangelical Church was built in 1870, and it housed the English and Arabic congregations. For the next hundred years and was the main center for all the celebrations and activities of both these communities. It was was destroyed in the Lebanese civil war between 1975 till 1990. The church was reconstructed in 1998 and since that time, this church happens to be the heart and soul of the Central District of Beirut. It engages the worshipers through services which are conducted by the famous Rev. Dr. Habib Badr. The church is also popular for its significant educational activities and diverse socio-cultural gatherings. In recent times, this church is running two schools of Beirut and also the Johann Ludwig Schneller School of the Western Beqaa District.

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26. Lebanese Prehistory Museum - Beirut

Lebanese Prehistory Museum

Known as the Museum Of Lebanese Prehistory, this famous building is a must go to site if you are interested in archaeology and prehistory relics found in Beirut. This museum is important since it was the first one of its kind within the entire Arabic Middle East region, to offer a glimpse of prehistoric history. The museum was opened in 2000 in order to commemorate Saint Joseph University of Beirut’s 125th anniversary. Visitors to the museum enjoy a glimpse of an exceptional collection of human and animal bones, with stone tools and Neolithic pottery, and a selection of other ancient items, all of which have been excavated from over 400 archaeological sites till the late 1990s. The building of the museum is built on a space of 350 square meters, designed on 2 levels. The basement display puts the lifestyle of the hunt gatherers on display, with the upper museum floor being entirely dedicated to the exhibition of tools. There are 35 amazing display boards in the museum with 22 windows, which have a range of flint stones and fossils on display, belonging to the Stone Age. The exhibits are divided into the sections of tools, invention of agriculture and hunting. A host of different exhibitions and conferences are held at the museum, which include some great specimens being the ‘Heritage of Darwin’, ‘Aquatic Fossils from Lebanon’, and ‘Paintings Of Frederic Husseini’. Tourists enjoy film documentaries and engaging exhibits in the museum, which serve as a source of information and enjoyment for all.

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