There is no doubt about the fact that the tourism industry plays an important role for the economy of any country. This remains true for Lebanon as well, as it is one of the major sources through which the country generates its revenue. Within this touristy nation, Byblos is a modernized town that is also considered to be one of the most ancient inhabited cities of the world.
There are a number of interesting things to do in Byblos, from exploring the ruins on which this has been city built, to watching the sunset over the beach. Three is a major area of the city that has been built on layers and layers of ruins belonging to the Stone Age and the Ottoman days. Exploring the culture is one of the other things to do in Byblos, as the culture of the place depicts the perfect amalgam of tradition and sophistication, which is a rare combination. One of the best things to do in Byblos, if you visit the place during July to August is to attend the “Byblos International Festival”. Here, you may get a chance to listen to the local as well as international artists. This festival is a celebration of the unique and ancient culture of Byblos. This city serves as home to some of the most historic and religious sites such as the Church of Saint John the Baptist, Crusader Castle built in the 12th century, and various Phoenician Temples, such as the Temple of the Obelisks.
One of the first places to visit in Byblos, when you come to this city is “the old harbor”. There is rocky headland that provides shelter to this harbor from the sea. Near the harbor are the remains of an ancient city where the St. Jean-Marc Cathedral, the old market area and the Crusader Castle are still standing to this day. You can also find a number of other places to visit in Byblos, as it can be marked as the birthplace of a civilization that was responsible for populating Lebanon. These sites include the Tower Temple as well as the NE Gate of the ancient city. The Byblos Wax Museum, Byblos Fossil Museum and Edde Sands Hotel and Wellness Resort make up the list of many other things to do in Byblos. Byblos’ past gives you a chance to explore a blend of cultures and religions. Here, you can find castles, churches as well as mosques, such as the Sultan Abdul Majid Mosque, located in close proximity. The things to do in Byblos also include spending days relaxing on the sandy beaches, eating at the numerous open air cafes and signing up for yacht cruises that leave the harbor periodically. So this destination truly has a lot to offer from history to recreation and is a must visit when you are in Lebanon.
The things to do in Byblos Archaeological Site and to see is a historical tour that shoud not be missed. The Crusader Castle is located just within the entrance and adds a fitting touch to the archaelogical site which features Greek, Roman and Neolithic ruins. The Roman Theater has only five tiers remaining ,was built about 218 A.D. It was removed from its original site between the City gate and the two superimposed temples, to its present location.
The Royal tombs go back to the necropolis dates; 2nd millennium B.C. and contains underground tombs of the Byblos kings. The most important is that of king Ahiram, whose sarcophagus bears one of the earliest inscription of the Phoenician alphabet.
The Ramparts and Glacis city walls of 3rd and 2nd millennia B.C. are located inside the modern wall next to the castle entrance, those structure show successive stages of the construction and restoration. The Remains of the temple of Baalat Gebal ( 2700 B.C ), dedicated to the Lady of Byblos , the goddess who was to preside over the city for over two millennia.
The area that was once the spring called " Ayn el-Malik " can be seen in a large cistern constructed of irregular stone. This was the main source of water for Byblos.
The L Temple is derived from its shape. It was erected in the 3rd millennium B.C and was dedicated to a divinity.
As for The Temple of the Obelisks which was originally built on top of the "Temple en L" was moved by archaeologists to conduct the excavations .
The Crusader Castle in Byblos is a solid structure that is surrounded by a wide and dry moat spanning 10 meters. This is located just within the entrance and adds a fitting touch to the archeological site which features Greek, Roman and Neolithic ruins. The castle offers a panoramic view over the vast ruins along with the harbor if you climb to the crenellated towers and roofs. There is also a fortified central tower where you can truly appreciate the majesty of your surroundings along with a small museum which is located within the castle confines. Information panels outlining the castle’s history are also present which can offer context to your experience.
Once you finish exploring the castle, you can turn back to the entrance and turn left to take a closer look at the ruins. These include some old city ramparts that date back to the 3rd millennium BC, a couple of temples, a Roman theatre that looks out over the sea along with several sculptures. The interesting thing is that the entire layout of the castle was not based on the typical grid favored by the Romans. It was adapted to suit existing monuments on the site.
Ramparts, glacis and city walls of the 3rd and 2nd millennia B.C. located inside the modern wall on the right side of the Castle entrance,those structures show successive stages of the construction and restoration of these Mediaval ramparts.
the indented wall belongs to the fortifications of the 3rd millennium, while the terraced slopes or glacis are made of large blocks that go back to the Hyksos period (1725 - 1580 B.C..
Byblos is one of oldest cities in the worlds. Since its creation more than 7000 years ago, during the Neolithic Age, it has constantly been inhabited. Byblos "City of Letters" is a living museum of human history, providing a reference for all literary works. Jbeil means "pottery" in Phoenician. It could also derive from the contraction of two words : "Jeb" meaning "well" or "spring", the God "El", father of the adored triad of Phenico- Cananeens. Only Foreigners and particularry Greeks used the name "Byblos". And because it is the city of the book, its name also derives from the "Bible".
Jbeil was born during the Neolithic Age when a small fishing community settled along the coast and built monocellular huts. About 3000 B.C., the small village developed and prospered thanks to trade relations with Egypt. The habitants exported wood from the mountains, which was used by the Pharaohs for shipbuilding. They imported gold, alabaster, papyrus rope and linen, thus strengthening cultural links between the city and the Pharaos homeland.
The souk is developed outside the medieval entity. Until nowadays, few craftsmen still preserve some traditions. But, one can find today antiquities stores and other businesses.
Byblos port is a decades old port in Lebanon’s Byblos city and is actually considered to one of the oldest in the country to date. In 3000BC, it was considered to be the main shipping location for timber in Middle East and was regularly used by the Phoenicians to transport wine, the famous cedars of the country and other items to Pharaohs in Egypt for their tombs and ships. The city itself is home to a number of cultures and civilizations that were introduced in Lebanon over the years and is constructed over a number of ancient ruins that date back to as far back as the Stone Age.
So if you visit Byblos, you won’t be just visiting a port city, but a city steeped in history that has been tied closely with the Mediterranean for decades. The port is home to several seaside restaurants that serve mostly fresh seafood and offer unimpeded views of the ocean as far as the eye can see. The souk which is situated in Jbeil also features several small cafes that are known for their romantic atmosphere. So if you are in Byblos, make sure you visit the port if you are in the mood for sea food fresh from the sea.
The Cathedral of St John Marc is located outside the Byblos archaeological site, the Crusaders built it in the beginning of the 13th century, in line with the simple Roman style. Destroyed by an earthquake, its southern facade was rebuilt. During the Ottoman rule, the Cathedral of St John Marc was used as a stable.
In 1764, the Maronites took the Cathedral. The external baptistery has the shape of square, with Byzantine and Italian decoration. The bell tower is recent, for the original one was destroyed by the earthquake. Mosaics of the ancient Byzantine Cathedral now fall in neglect.
Saint Maroun’s Monastery has a magical and a pious atmosphere that is a bit more unusual. Actually one of the most serene things to do in St. Maroun Annaya Monastery is to wander around with prayers and somehow in random places, Saint Charbel’s presence will let you know! Charbel was a name he chose after becoming a Christian monk and joining the Corps of the Lebanese Maronite Order in St. Maroun’s monastery-Annaya in the year 1851. His name was Youssef Antoun Makhlouf born on May the 8th 1828. He was and still is famous for his miracles, he is a healer, a saint and a spiritual gateway to the divine source. If you are looking to free your mind and soul, a visit to Saint Maroun’s Monastery is a must.
Ehmej is a village with a small population famous for its deep forests and environmental tourism. From breath taking camping sites to hiking, climbing and all kinds of outdoor games, sports and entertainment activities at the Park Arz Ehmej. Things to do in Ehmej are all about outdoor recreation and connecting with nature and mother earth.