Is Lebanon safe?

By Joan Torres 213 Comments Last updated on April 14, 2023

Update safety Lebanon
Lebanon is going through a political crisis
1) In October 2019, thousands of demonstrators took over the streets of Beirut. The situation hasn’t really improved.
2) The problem with Iran is making things even tenser.
3) The massive bomb blast made things even worse
However, I got recent reports from travelers who say that everything seems normal, from a traveling point of view at least, and the only strange thing they notice is that the Lebanese Pound is fluctuating like crazy.

Today, many people are continuously asking me:

Is it safe to travel to Lebanon? Is Beirut safe? 

That’s because, unfortunately, many travelers believe that safety in both Beirut and Lebanon is an issue.

But guess what! Lebanon, including Beirut, is one of the safest countries in the Middle East. The only reasons why it’s not considered as such are the media and inaccurate Government travel advice and warnings.

With one of the lowest crime rates in the world today, Lebanon can brag about having the lowest number of Islamic extremists in the Middle East.

This article aims to tell you the reasons why.

Is it safe to travel to Lebanon

In this Lebanon safe guide you will find:

How safe is Lebanon?
Non-safe areas
How to visit the sensitive areas of Hezbollah
The isolated case of Tripoli
Solo female travel
Extra: Lebanon and Beirut safety tips
More Information

You may also be interested in which countries in the Middle East are safe to travel?

6 Reasons why Beirut and Lebanon are safe

1 – Contrary to what people say, there is no war in Lebanon and Beirut

For some reason, people in the West tend to associate Lebanon with war. And I wonder: ”Why?” Whereas it’s true that the country did suffer 25 years of Civil War, this ended in 1991. It was more than 25 years ago!

Furthermore, the Lebanese-Israeli war took place in 2006, but it lasted for one month only. For the past 10 years, the country has been able to enjoy peace!

Read: A travel guide to Beirut

Lebanon travel advice
A church destroyed by the Civil War, 25 years ago – Lebanon travel warning

2 – In Lebanon, there’s no place for extremism. Did you know that more than 40% of the population are Christians?

Lebanon is one of the most culturally diverse countries in the world and today, several different religious groups coexist peacefully.

Did you know that more than 40% of the population are Christians? No?

Did you know that Sunni Muslims (the branch of Islam that ISIS draws its followers from) only make up 25% of the population?

In this country, there’s no place for extremism. Have you ever heard of any Lebanese who has radicalized and joined ISIS? Normally, they come from Syria, Saudi Arabia, Jordan or even Turkey.

Lebanon is so culturally cluttered, that the chances of a person radicalizing are low.

Read: 50 Tips for traveling to Iraqi Kurdistan

Is it safe to travel to Lebanon now
A mosque and a church built side by side – Is Beirut safe?

3 – This is the most liberal country in the Middle East

On the other hand, although religion plays an important role in the life of most families, from a religious point of view, Lebanon is the most liberal country in the entire Middle East.

It has the largest number of atheists (especially among young people), beer is available everywhere and drinking alcohol in the street is allowed (and quite common). Surprised?

For the first time in history, Saudi Arabia they started issuing tourist visas. Read: Tips + How to travel to Saudi Arabia

4 – It shares a border with Syria. OK, so what?

Lebanon shares border with Syria. Yes, so what? They are two different countries. The border between them is highly guarded and controlled. The chances of the Syrian conflict moving into Lebanon are non-existent.

Learn: Is it safe to travel to Syria nowadays?

5 – The investment in military security is huge

We can’t forget that Lebanon is located in a highly turbulent region. The military presence aims to prevent any sort of potential conflict.

Soldiers and checkpoints are found in absolutely every corner of the country, especially in Beirut. The Lebanese people love the army.

They are accepted in society because it makes them feel safer.

Lebanon travel safety
Soldiers in Beirut – Is Beirut safe to visit?

6 – Crime rate and kidnappings are non-existent

As in most of the Arab countries, the crime rate is practically zero. No robberies, no violence. In Lebanon, you can walk around without a worry anywhere at any time, even women.

Read: A travel guide to Palestine

NO-GO zones when traveling to Lebanon

I just told you the reasons why Lebanon and Beirut are safe places to travel to.

Does it mean that you could wander freely across the whole country? No, absolutely not.

Whereas it’s true that 95% of the country is safe, the remaining 5% might not be. Why?

Because the few radicals who live in the country are found in those areas. These areas are dangerous, not only for the simple fact that you may meet some extremists, but, since the area is so close to Syria, it also suffers from spillover from the Syrian conflict.

Where are these no-go zones? 

Basically, the north-eastern portion highlighted in red. Don’t even get close to this area. The rest of the country is safe. Please note that the below map is an approximation.

Update 2018: The army managed to kick out many of the ISIS troops. The security in this tiny part of Lebanon has also improved.

Safety in Lebanon & Beirut: Visiting the sensitive areas of Hezbollah

There are a bunch of areas which, even though they are not classified as dangerous, are considered sensitive. Why? Because they are controlled by Hezbollah.

What does ”sensitive area” mean?

Hezbollah areas have always been the target of terrorist groups, such as the Islamic State.

In fact, the last suicide bombings that occurred in Lebanon (don’t worry, there is one attack per year) happened in Hezbollah areas. They are partially restricted and no journalism of any sort is allowed.

To understand it better I recommend you read: The day I was accused of being an Islamic State spy in Lebanon

Which Hezbollah areas are sensitive?

How safe is Beirut Lebanon?
The Palestinian refugee camp of Shatila, Beirut – How safe is Beirut Lebanon?

Things to keep in mind when visiting a Hezbollah area

Don’t even think of taking pictures or let anyone see you with a camera

Some locals may be hostile and you might be kicked out for no reason. If you have the chance to go with a Lebanese, then do it

Foreigners will always be treated as suspicious. You’ll pass through several checkpoints where you’ll be checked and interrogated over and over

In these areas, there are no tourists. Many of the residents can’t understand why someone would to come to their area for tourism purposes.

Repeatedly, you’ll be asked by the locals: ”What are you doing here”?

Simply, answer: ”Nothing, I am just a tourist and I am walking all around the city”.

Today, Hezbollah areas are relatively safe. I say relatively because there’s one suicide bombing per year, approximately. To be safer, stay away from crowds.

Before heading to any of those areas, check the current situation with a local Lebanese. The areas close to the Israeli border require a special permit. To get it, go to any police station in either Saida or Beirut. You will get it instantly.

Keep in mind that this permit gives you access to the area, but it doesn’t allow you to take pictures or do anything silly.

For more information, read visiting Bourj al Brajneh

Important to mention: These areas have no appeal for tourists. The only reason why you would want to go there is that you are tremendously curious and need to know what the hell is going on in there. I visited everything. In the border with Israel, I was detained by the authorities. In the Shia neighborhood of Bourj el-Barajneh, some locals kicked me out, pacifically, but for no reason. However, I didn’t experience any issues when I visited the Palestinian refugee camp of Shatila. If you are as freaky and curious as I am, the experience is definitely worth it.

Lebanon tourism safety
Bourj el-Barajneh (Hezbollah area) – Travel in Lebanon

The isolated case of Tripoli

The UK travel advice to Lebanon says that Tripoli is not safe.

Tripoli is a city located in the north of Lebanon and the second most important one. Why do governments consider it dangerous?

Since the Civil War, there have been one-off clashes between Sunni and Alawi Muslims who reside in the neighborhoods of Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen, respectively. Throughout the years, these clashes have killed several people.

This is a one-off conflict happening in a specific area, far away from the city center. It’s a fight between two small districts and doesn’t go beyond them.

The rest of the city is totally cool and safe. I spent four days in Tripoli, and to be honest, it was one of the highlights of my trip.

I also have to admit that, since I’m an extremely curious human being, I also went to Jabal Mohsen.

And what can I say?

Life there was merely normal. Again, clashes and bombings happen once a year, not more.

Read: 80 Useful tips for traveling to Iran

Lbanon safe to travel
Jebel Mohsen, a neighborhood in Tripoli which, according to FCO, is one of the most dangerous areas in Lebanon. However, I went there and it was just fine – Lebanon travel

Is Lebanon safe for solo female travelers?

I just am portraying Lebanon as a great, safe country to travel to but, what about solo female travelers?

I am fully aware that a man’s experience is going to be very different from a woman’s, especially in Muslim countries, where men tend to be more conservative.

However, many female travelers claim that Lebanon is a relatively easy country to travel to, much easier than any other Middle Eastern destination, as it is a country where both liberal and conservative people coexist peacefully.

For a more detailed analysis, read: Tips on how to travel to Lebanon as a woman

You may also be interested in solo female travel in Pakistan

Extra: Beirut and Lebanon safety tips

Consider going on a tour

I always encourage people to travel independently but I can also understand why some travelers may prefer to travel on a tour, especially in a place like Lebanon.

I recommend you book them via GetYourGuide, as they always work with a wide range of local guides and tour operators, and you can book your tour with just one click.

So far, these are the tours they offering for traveling in Lebanon:

  • Beirut city tour – Explore one of the most fascinating cities in the Middle East. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE
  • Jeita, Harissa and Byblos – Trip to one of the most stunning caves in the world and historical cities. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE
  • Wine tour – Lebanon is well-known for its wine and, in this tour, you will visit 3 different wineries from Beqaa Valley. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE
  • Baalbek – Some of the most outstanding Roman ruins outside of Rome. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE
Epic ruins of Baalbek

Stay safe by planning your trip ahead – Best books for traveling to Lebanon

The best way to travel to Lebanon safely is to plan your trip properly. For this, I recommend the following books:

Lebanon Travel Guide by Bradt – This is the most updated book guide about Lebanon. Bradt is my favorite brand because they always provide plenty of local insights and travel tips for independent travelers.

The Middle East Lonely Planet Guide – It has only one chapter about Lebanon but the information is updated, so it might prove useful.

You may also like:
Best books on Pakistan
Best books on Central Asia
Best books on Georgia

Use Couchsurfing

In Beirut, Couchsurfing is a big deal and there are plenty of events every week. I suggest you look up for these weekly events and get to know some Lebanese people. Actually, there is a group of local attendants who are organizing trips for foreigners almost every week.

Do you use a VPN when you travel? Remember that, in this type of countries, some websites might be blocked and your online activity might be monitored by the Government. Therefore, in order to navigate safely, you should use a VPN. Read my tutorial: How to find (and why use) the best VPN for traveling

A reminder

As I mentioned previously, don’t go to the northeast of the country and watch out when you are in Hezbollah areas.

And remember to check my other all my other guides about Lebanon:

Beirut travel guide
A 10-day itinerary for visiting Lebanon

For more content to the region, don’t forget to check all my travel guides to the Middle East, plus:

Best places to travel in the Middle East
Where in the Middle East is safe?

And don’t forget to check my Syria travel guide!

Conclusion: so, is Lebanon safe to visit?

Is Lebanon safe? The answer is yes, but you need to keep in mind that this country has gone through several conflicts and is located in the heart of the most turbulent region in the world.

Travel safe and cautious. If you have any question, leave a comment below. I’ll be happy to answer. Cheers.

More information for traveling safely in Lebanon

All our guides to Lebanon

Check more safety guides

Is Lebanon safe?


Lebanon sounds like a beautiful country. While I was volunteering in Calais, we sometimes managed to send containers or food and clothing to the refugee camps there, so I can’t really get away from the association in my head. I don’t think I would be scared to travel there, but it must feel quite mad to have the chaos and suffering of Syria so close.

Hi Katie, thanks for your comment. That’s great that you were volunteering in Calais and helping the refugees. I also did some volunteering in a Syrian refugee camp in Iraq. It was a beautiful experience! Which camps in Lebanon did you send containers? I know a couple of them. I understand that you can’t take it out of your head, but a refugee camp in Lebanon isn’t different than the ones in France. Lebanon is just giving refugee to all the Syrians who are escaping from the war.

Hello Joantow!

I’m born and lived in Sweden my whole life, though I’ve been traveling to Lebanon every second year since I’ve been a child. I’d like to add that I’m a shia muslim and the hezbollah areas you’re refeering to is not as what’s described, although I fully agree with everything you’ve stated very well!

It might be because maybe you’re not a lebanese descendant and you’re seen as a kind of threat or sucpicious. I’ve been to every single part of lebanon except some sunni places cause we are not the best of friends. I can agree with you that questions will be asked when traveling to hezbollah areas but that’s because we’ve been targeted by israeli zionists and isis, (something you might already know). Though I would never say it’s not safe in any of the hezbollah areas, especially if you know someone there. My friend is Swedish, blond and doesn’t look anything like a lebanese, he traveled with me and I took him on many lebanese tours, the shia hezbollah areas was where he felt most welcome and at home, but maybe that’s because he was with me… Anyhow great article!

Hi Jenni, unlike what people think, the crime rate is zero in not only Lebanon but, across all the Middle East. I don’t know what is the reason behind it. I think it’s just a cultural a thing. Seriously, Lebanon is this sort of country where if you forget a $100 bill on the table of a café, you’ll find it there when you come back.

I like what am hearing because I’ve being wondering how safe my wife is ,as Ghanaian. But from all that I’ve read , I feel she is save. thanks

The Lebanese were pretty racist but since the rich have been employing Ethiopian servants they have slowly become more tolerant, and in 2018 I noticed an Ethiopian cafe had opened near Bourj Hamoud (the Armenian area). If you speak Arabic and tell them off for staring they’ll be mortified. Also Lebanon receives Somalian visitors from the Gulf, I met a lovely couple while in my hostel, she was Lebanese and he Somalian. Both spoke brilliant English too.

Now I want to go to the RED ZONE! I just like to live life dangerous. 😀 Seriously, great write up and I hope to get out here soon

hahaha… You are crazy man. There have been a lot of reports of kidnapping in that area plus it’s a war zone and there’s continuously fight. I think that even if you wanted to go, you wouldn’t be able to pass beyond the check-points.

Hey guys.. im from lebanon. Lebanon is the most safe country you could ever see.. and the most beautifull ..

Me too I am from lebanon it is so safe but I don’t think tripoli is that dangerous but never leave money on a table because of course it will be gone depending on wich place did you put it

Hi there! I’m traveling to Beirut for work soon. Our legal team has recommended we dress very subdued with long pants and covered arms. Is this really necessary??

Tripoli looks amazing. I was surprised to read that the crime and kidnapping rate are non-existent though I guess once you think about it, makes sense. We Americans are just programed to be afraid of those areas.

I think the problem is in America and in the rest of the world. I’m from Spain and here everybody is also really scared about this part of the world. Our media only shows things related to ISIS, war and suicide bombers. But once you are on the ground, things are really extremely different

Glad to see people like you who have an open mind! I live in Canada but have a Lebanese background and visit all the time which stops me from viewing my beautiful country as a foreigner would. I hope you consider to visit us one day! We are very welcoming:)

Happy to hear that Lebanon is still safe to travel to. I’ve never been to the Middle East yet and want to go badly, so this just may be an amazing idea. Thanks for the inspiration!

The issue is our government, not the people. Fortunately for the past 2 days, our people have finally decided to protest against our corrupted government.

I want to travel to Lebanon by next week, is it safe to visit Beirut Lebanon with the current protest going on now

I kindly would like to disagree with you as I believe that its people are what make the beautiful country as amazing as it is. Everyone is like family! Sure there may be a couple bad people… but they are everywhere around the world. Cheers!

I totally appreciate your insights and take on Lebanon. While you felt safe, it might be different for a woman, especially one traveling solo. It would be cool if there were a map of the Hezbollah areas so we’d know what to avoid.

Hi Debra, I don’t think there’s any problem for a solo woman traveler. The country is pretty liberal and unlike in other Middle Eastern countries, people wouldn’t be starring at you just for being a woman. As I said, 50% of the population are Christian, so they are pretty used to uncovered and more liberal woman. Even outside of the capital, you get to see women wearing western (and slightly provocative) clothes.

hello Bebra, i am jhonney and i live near hezbolla areas, and i have friends there, its totally safe and you are welcome, you just need to show them that you are just a traveler.. please dont believe the media.. good luck 🙂

Im lebanese and i can 100% assure u even in Hezbollah territory women’s are safe every lebanese is raised to respect women if u ever have the chance to visit u will be amazed how free women are in here and there is no dressing code u can wear what ever u like and from Beirut to Jbeil parties never ends

I always wanted to visit Lebanon, I found their cuisine so delicious, but I was worried about safety. Thanks for letting us know that is safe to travel. Obviously one has to be careful everywhere he travels.

It’s sad that we’re in a time when “one bombing per year” is considered “safe” but that being said I would definitely go to Lebanon. I love visiting places that basically don’t have anything to see but give a very distinct insight into local life.

Hi Lydia. Thanks for your message. Yes, it’s weird to say that ”one bombing per year” is considered safe but seriously, there’s nothing happening beyond than that. How many bombs and gunshots have occurred in the USA in the last couple of years? Not one per year, but many. And still, the USA is considered a safe country. Yes, you are right, Lebanon is not a place for sightseeing, but a country to enjoy the local life.

Not a place for sightseeing? I went for the first time and was blown away with the amazing sights to see. From the cedars of god, the city of Byblos (Jbail), Medieval and biblical age castles, Roman ruins throughout the entire country, to one of the biggest, oldest and the most amazing underground caves known to man called the Jetta grotto… this is one of the most beautiful sight seeing countries on the planet. The list goes on and on for things to do and see in Lebanon. That doesn’t even include historical sights in Beirut. It’s
one of the oldest and most important port cities in the history of civilization. Tons to do and see.

Hi Joan
Thanks a lot for your lovely report about Lebanon.Very inspiring! I´m planning to go there on September and so, I´m trying to get as much info as I can, maily regarding the security topic. I would like to hear your opinion about 2 points: 1. I´ve heard that Baalbek is a Hezbollah area. So, is Baalbek included in your sensitive areas? 2. What do you think about reting a car there? Any issue with that? How about the road conditions?
Thanks in advance for your help.

Hi Tereza, apologies. I don’t know your comment went to my spam folder. Anyhow, thanks for your comment. Good that you’re planning a trip to Lebanon 🙂
1 – Yes, Baalbek is a Hezbollah area but is not as sensitive at the southern part of the country, meaning that you don’t need a permit and you can go there freely. No need to be alarmed
2 – If you can afford it, renting a car can be great. Petrol is as expensive as Europe though as they don’t have black gold resources. The roads are good. I would just worry about how the people drive, as they are pretty crazy. Have you ever driven in the Middle East, India or any country like that?

Thank you so much for letting people know how beautiful and safe Lebanon is. My husband is Lebanese and we will be visiting this summer. It will be my third time there and cannot wait. They used to call it the Paris of the Middle East and that it truly is. Thank you again for clarification as many do not know and are uncertain of their safety and the beauty that there is.

Hi Amy, Yeah, Lebanon, or Beirut in this case, used to be called the Paris in the ME and what people don’t know, is that this capital is a Westernized city where people in the West can have the same fun they have back home. The mix of cultures is fascinating and I’m really jealous that you have the chance to go there so often! Thanks for your comment!

I was enlightening by ur article and the first of its kind i have found.
My husband wants me and my 2 year old daughter to travel with him to jabal mohsen next week as his father is unwell.
I am quiet worried after reading what i can find and dont know of we should go.
I know my husband wouldnt put me in danger but i also feel like he wants his father to meet our daughter and will do this at any cost.
I have no idea of what it will be like as my husband doesnt talk to me about it and keeps telling me i will see when we are there and i will enjoy it.
Do you know anything about my rights while im there and my rights for my daughter?

Hi, Holly, Glad that you’re going to Lebanon!
all I can say about Jebel Mohsen is what I said in my article. There’s been some tension going on but, it was an occasional fight and now it’s been quite for such a long time. Furthermore, it was not a conflict related to terrorism but a religious conflict between a different kind of Muslims themselves.
As per your question, in Lebanon, 50% of the population is Christian. This means that the Muslims are already quite used to treat and deal with more liberal women. In Lebanon, you don’t need to worry about anything.
Have a nice trip

Hi…..just a quick warning. I travelled to Lebanon with my daughter when I was 24. I have been stuck here for 8 years. This is under Marronite law…… Very similar to Sonny law. No rights for woman. I’ve paid lawyers…. 100, 000 dollars…. Still here… Tried to go through Syria…. Hezbollah scared us and made us go back……. I even lived all around the country. In tyre…. Close to isreal…. Still no way out. British govenment have done nothing….. We r british citizens…. My daughter was born in the u. K. I can’t extend my worry for u!!! Please don’t go….. It sounds suspicious…… I’ve been poisoned recently 5 times… My daughters almost 8…. She won’t eat because of this….. There are no human rights…. A holiday here ok….. Don’t Bring your child here!!!!! Please!!!!

I’m very sorry to read this, but its all lie. I went my self with my family and feel like we are at home., for a good to week, people are very friendly welcoming.

Honey what ur saying is not true and if ur being held against ur will u can put a phone number in here and i can get u out of the country in a minute western embassies are bery powerful in lebanon and for any western people who visit Lebanon if u ever been arrested u can stay quite and ask for ur embassy if u didnt kill someone u will be out in no time and u will get an apology something the local dont get and that’s from experience as an ex policeman for 8 years

Awesome article man.I’m really happy that you had the experience to visit and share the most beautiful areas in Lebanon.Everything you’ve said is 100% true.I really recommend everyone to visit lebanon.One of the most beautiful and safest countries in the middle east.We haven’t got any terrorist attack since 2015.
Thanks again joan.
Proud to be Lebanese

Hello, Moe! I’m very happy to hear this nice feedback from a Lebanese. I’ve to Lebanon twice and spent 1 month in the country, so I got quite a lot of nice local insights! Yeah, Lebanon is 100% safe and I also recommend and promote it very much! Cheers mate!

My husband has lived in Lebanon his entire life except the last 2.5 years and he’s actually back there right now (I’ve never been) and after reading the comments, I asked my husband if its true that there is zero crime (no stealing, rape etc) and it’s as safe as what I’m actually reading about in these comments and he just laughed at me and replied “what do you think the jails here are full of criminals for? They didn’t just end up in jail for scratching their arses”? It’s like any other country in the world…Food for thought..

haha, Hi Shay, your husband comment is hilarious. Yeah, Lebanon is such a misunderstood place and is a country like any… just because it has a neighbor immersed in war, doesn’t mean that it’s dangerous!

Very well written. I have lived in Lebanon for about 7 months and I agree with pretty much everything written in the article. I would add that – to stay safe – one should never get into an argument with another driver over who had a right of way. Driving in Lebanon can be a bit of an adrenaline sport, and whilst most people are just fine (though on the road it’s “everyone against everyone”), one can occasionally encounter a real lunatic (the higher concentration of which seems to be among the shabby bus drivers).

Thanks for your words 🙂 Yeah, I agree, lol. Some of these bus drivers are real lunatic! But probably, I would also be a lunatic if I was continuously driving on those roads!

Thanks for the info! My partner and I are about to start our 1 weeks trip to Lebanon. We have rented a car and plan to travel by ourselves (my partner is used to driving in the Middle East). But I was wondering if it is a good idea to travel alone to Baalbek or would it be safer to go with a tour/driver? Any advice on how to visit Baalbek is welcomed!

Hi! If your partner is used to the crazy Middle Easter driving, then you will be more than fine! Baalbek is safe place, don’t worry about that. Cheers 🙂

My family and I just went there in June and Baalbek was safe and worth the drive. My daughter vlogged our trip to Lebanon and you are welcome to check it out and hope that it makes you feel more comfortable. Here is one link we were there for 3 weeks and she has a vlog for each one. Enjoy!!

I’m Lebanese and man, those sensitive places you went to, I have never been there despite my almost 20 years in Lebanon. Lol you really must be curious. Also I recommend anyone who visits Lebanon to visit the Mount Lebanon governorate mostly. It has Beirut, the most mountains and ski resorts, most grottos, most monasteries, most beaches and nightlife spots, and ruins and ancient cities like Byblos. It’s typically the mostly Christian area especially between the Jbeil-Keserwan districts.

Hi Joantow, My 22 year old granddaughter and have plans to vist Beruit in December for 10 days. We have already booked our flights and reserved out Hotel in the Harma district of Beruit. We also plan to visit the village of my parents birth in the Bekaa Valley. The village is on the border and Syria is visible from there. Did you travel to the Bekaa Valley. Is it a dangerous or waht you call a sensitive area? My Lebanese cousin who lives in Beruit is going to drive us there. Will we be stopped an questioned at checkpoints along the way? Has the recent resignation of Harri, the Lebanese prime minister, made Lebanon less safe?

Hello George, the entire country is completely safe, except for the tiny dot which I am mentioning above and anyways, a few months ago, the small ISIS spillover from Syria was finally expelled by the Lebanese authorities, so I would say that now it’s even. safer. You don’t have to worry about anything, especially if you go to touristic places such as Baalbek. As per the prime minister issue, no one knows what will happen, not even the Lebanese themselves, but there are no signs that the country became less safe according to my local friends. Cheers and enjoy Lebanon

Actually, the resignation made the Lebanese unite and the authorities become more awake, which means it’s like the safest time now.

Ur a lebanese so there is no worry ur visiting ur country its ur place ur land and ur heritage and if ur with a lebanese living in here u jabe nothing to worry about and bekaa people as 90% of the lebanese are very generous and wants everyone to see lebanon in the best picture possible

Specifically, Aita Al Foukar is safe?

And please post any interesting updates as you learn them- pertaining to politics and Lebanon’s continued stability and safety- my concern is that you mentioned there is 1 suicide bombong per year- I do t think that’s happened yet this year- I hope it doesn’t, but I sure hope it doesn’t when my father and daughter are there-very worried mom!!

Hi, Yes I always try to update this post with the latest updates. I don’t know what’s Aita al Foukar, sorry. And as per the suicide bombing, 1 per year it’s just an average. What I meant is that in the past 6 or 7 years there’s been maybe 5 o 6 suicide bombings. That should not concern you at all. The likelihood of being caught by a bomb is soooo low. It’s more likely that you get overrun by a car this morning in your hometown.

Just to make things clear, those suicide bombings ended in 2016. They always attacked the southern suburbs of Beirut, which are considered the Hezbollah headquarters. That happened when ISIS was still in the red spot, but since the border is safe now, the whole country is safe, no need to worry.

I have been living in Beirut for the past year, and feel very safe here. Yes, there are areas in Lebanon (and even Beirut) that should be avoided, depending on one’s comfort and, to a degree, origin. I would not sway anyone from visiting Lebanon, but suggest that you visit your country’s Embassy or Foreign Ministry website for the latest travel info (btw. the U.S. Department of State info on Lebanon is typically exaggerated, given historical context, and should be taken with a grain of salt). The Lebanese seem to be quite weary of fighting, and even if the Hariri resignation leads to the worst (which I doubt it will), another civil war (meaning internal war) is unlikely. This being said, one can never rule out an incident of some sorts, and it would be a lie to say that Lebanon is as safe as, for instance, Switzerland. The statistics show far more bombings than one-per-year, and many messed up people levitated here for decades. It would be naive to think they just disappeared or grew up.

Hello there,
I’m planning to travel with the ship from Northern Cyprus via Turkey to Tripoli in summer. It’s good to hear some positive opinions about this place, since our German goverment keeps warning about it in a dramatic tone. I can’t imagine that the situation is too dangerous for a one- or two nights stay before heading to Beirut.
Nice blog, keep up the good work 🙂

Hi Lukas! Awesome, I didn’t know the ship from Cyprus to Lebanon was working… May I ask you how much are you paying and if it leaves every day? Is it a ferry or a cargo ship? Regards,

Totally agree. This shouldn’t even be a question or doubt. But I understand if people are slightly anxious before the visit because I know I was. I was very scared of Pakistan despite it being just so near to where I live (Delhi). But it is only after I travelled with my family there that I lost the fear. Travelling does that to you and you should never be afraid of new places. A point of thought, though – always go with someone you know to new places that are known to be calamitous. Thanks.

Wow a great read, interesting and has really put my mind at ease before I head out to do some volunteer work with orphaned refugee kids.
Thanks keep exploring x

I don’t mean to rain on anyone’s parade, but do not throw caution to the wind. Lebanon is a fabulous country. I’ve been 2x in the last 10 yrs.. The 1st X I was there I was kidnapped by Syrians. They eventually let me go; it was not a pleasant experience. The 2nd X i was there, it was without incident. If the political climate with Israel on one end and Syria on the other end were more stable, I’d love to live in that country because the people are AMAZING! Nevertheless, Lebanon is not in Europe. It is in one of the most precarious spots for any country; especially a country that is riddled with intellectuals, gorgeous people, well-dressed, polite, ingratiating, and outgoing. Lebanon is my most favorite country in the world. Why? The people make that city AWESOME! Even though I would love to be there, today, I’m too afraid…frighten to venture back there with ISIS on one end and the Jews on the other end and Hezbollah and its recklessness with Iran at epic-center. It’s a ticking time bomb. If it is not imperative for you to be there; do not go until Syria, Israel, Iran, and Hezbollah are stabilized.

Hello, I live in Lebanon, and there is no danger right now. ISIS is completely dead in Syria and Iraq, and the whole Lebanese-Syrian border is protected by the Lebanese and Syrian army respectively. As for Israel, nobody wants any escalation from either side, and plus Israel is currently building a wall along the border. Hezbollah on the other hand has no members of its military branch on Lebanese territory except in Hermel, which is on the border with Syria and is has nothing for a tourist to see. Even with that it is still considered safe. I say if you’ve been to Lebanon in the past 10 years then now is definitely the best time of all to be here. Just beware of “Syrians” lol.. Kidnapping did use to happen a lot in Beqaa, but now again it’s safer than ever.

My daughter and dad were just there in December and had a great time and felt completely safe and secure.

Nazir, that’s GREAT news!
Thank you for taking time to respond.
You’d better extend me your Email address so that I can make sure I AirBnB with you and you make certain I’m safe for 3 – 5 weeks while working and enJOY Bayreuth, Lebanon and other cities too. I’ve been to countless places around the world and the people (their energy & synergy) in Lebanon by far exceed cultures from all around the world. I’ve been as far away as Uruguay to New Zealand (the worse ever is New Zealand)…and Lebanon is still TRUMP! No, NOT DonaldJTrump. …’trump’ as in Champion!
Kidding aside, I was kidnapped in February 2003. It was not funny at all. The experience was harrowing.

Lol I’m glad you actually loved this country the most and call it trump, even with what happened!
2003 was a bad time for the whole world actually, and don’t forget that there was Syrian occupation in Lebanon back then.
Anyway, I’ll hand you my secondary email just for security:, so when you’re here feel free to ask me anything! Btw, it’s Nizar not Nazir, and it’s Beirut, Bayreuth is a city in Germany.. Sorry for bringing out the grammar nazi in me Lol

GREAT! You must be the Ambassador for the country Nizar. You most definitely have the pulse!
Will be expecting you to overshadow my trip for the 3 – 5 weeks beginning at the end of May, early June 2018.
If I had known everything was stable and secure, would have arranged to be there since early 2018 to realize project.
When I arrive it will be ‘Tourist (High) Season’ and all the entire world will converge on Beirut and all the prices will go through the
ceiling. I.e., hotels, AirBnB, HouseTrip, Motels… stores etc… We’ll see.
Again, much thanks!
Yeah… it’s Birut, Bairut, Beirut. عيسى عيسى, … my bad …I placed your country in Bavaria. LoL! …is all good!

Lol that’s no problem! And you’re welcome, thank you as well, hopefully one day I’ll be an ambassador because why not lol.. There definitely would be a lot of tourists and higher prices, but if you look on the bright side, beach season would have started and all resorts would be open by then. Hope you can make it and enjoy!

Great article-we’re visiting Beirut and hopefully areas outside the city in May for 10 days. Can’t wait. We’ve previously visited Jordan (twice) which is amazing and I’m hoping The Lebanon is as fantastic as you describe. Obviously we will adhere to advice about no-go areas but we know how much false information is spread by governments with their own agenda on the Middle East

Hi Nita! Yeah there are a few NO-Go areas but even there the situation has improved since last summer. I am sure you will have so much fun. I was planning to come back in May as well but I have to delay my trip for one or two months for some reasons!

I am just just back from a week in Lebanon most time spent an hour from Beruit working with refugee children an amazing experience in an amazing country.. Already booked to return for longer!

Lebanon sounds beautiful! I’ve been thinking about traveling here this summer but I have some concerns. Is there much racism? I am Biracial but I’m often confused of being of Middle Eastern descent because of how light my skin is. I know I shouldn’t worry but i can’t help but worry about how the media has portrayed people of color in the Middle East and the hostility against Americans.

Lebanon is the most culturally diverse country in the Middle East and, perhaps, Europe, as well. Therefore, I don’t think that it is a racist country plus all the young people dream of America.

Chicago sees its most violent week of the year: 9 killed, 76 wounded may 8th 2018 food for thought. read all the crazy stuff that happens here. I’m sure there is some countries you don’t want to go to. Wonder if there is a post from non Americans asking if Chicago is safe to visit? You are gonna find violence an crappy people no matter were you go.Travel smart an enjoy this beautiful planet an all its great people an cultures. 🙂 enjoyed your blog post! Cheers!

Thanks for your insightful comment Mo! Yes, many people judge countries from dangerous when actually, in their home countries there is so much shit going on! We need to be more analytic and read many different media sources. Have a nice day!

Loved to read ur article about Lebanon. I’ve always liked to explore other countries cultures since im born and living in sweden (father from Peru and mother from sweden). Im thinking about travelling to Lebanon. Any specific places that I should visit?

Best regards, Sebastian

I am part Lebanese and have dreamed of visiting. We have always been afraid to go because of our American passports. We are now considering this adventure! Kibbeh and grape leaves from the mother country are worth it!

Very poor travel advice. Terms like “non-existent” used in article to describe risky areas substantiated with facts or recent statistics? Nah. This is tripe, the State Department is your source and they say reconsider travel plans to Lebanon.

Hi Jake, thank you so much for sharing your opinion but clearly, you don’t really know what are you talking about… The FCO advice is extremely biased and, on many occasions, it is just based on UK interests, so claiming that it has to be your source of information means that you are not very well-informed or, in any case, a very unexperienced traveler.

Actually, I am answering you now from Abkhazia. Do you know where is it? Abkhazia is an independent republic. It is actually an independent country but it is not recognized by any other besides Russia, Veneçuela and a few others. Today, Abkhazia has become and extremely lovely place, full of Russian tourists and just peace everywhere. The UK advises against all travel to Abkhazia. Why? Basically, because they don’t recognize it as country, so they are not very interested in you to see what is going on there. Moreover, there is also not diplomatic representation, so they claim that if something happened to you, you would be there on your own. So, should I stay home or go somewhere else just because of this weak advice? There is a higher chance of being killed in a car accident in front of your house than being killed in Abkhazia.

On the other hand, the FCO also advices against traveling to all countries where there is (or used to be a long time ago) a potential risk of terrorism or any kind of hostility. In some countries, this might be very high, like Yemen for example, but, in others, it is extremely low, like Lebanon. What happens is that even if there is only a 0.0001% of chance of terrorism, they will tell you not to go because, if the unlikely happened, they can blame you for not following their advice. If you had the decency of reading the entire article, you will see that the FCO tells you not to go to Tripoli and all the surrounding area. This is actually quite funny because Tripoli is one of the safest places in Lebanon. There used to be some fight in one neighborhood which is on a mountain, separated from the main city and, in any case, it was a fight between people from the same neighborhood, which didn’t go beyond that. That was some years ago and just ask to any local or anyone who has been there and he will tell you that it is extremely safe. It is funny that, according to the FCO, this area of Tripoli is an orange area but the whole Mexico is green, where there is a muuuuuuch higher chance of getting kidnapped there than in Lebanon. Dude, what I am telling you is that, on many occasions, it based on UK interests.

And yes, the crime in Lebanon is practically non-existent. Actually, I am extremely tired of having to look after my bag every time I am in a café or just being pickpocketted in my home-city Barcelona. In Lebanon, the crime rates are ridiculously low and you could forget your phone in a restaurant, come back after a few hours and, in most occasions, it will still be there.

And you think this is tripe? Well, this article was used during a trial in Canada against a father who wanted to take the custody of his daugther, because the mother (who was Lebanese) wanted to take her to Canada. According to the judge, the article was an extremely reliable source and an excellent analysis of the situation in Lebanon.

Dude, I am not blaming you for always following the FCO advise. If you want to stay at home and don’t enjoy life, it is up to you 😉


I want to visit Lebanon in the summer but am having a dilemma because I am dual nationality, one of the nationalities being Israeli. I am planning on going to Beirut and then to help in a refugee camp- I would really like to learn about the culture and experience the place. It sounds like an amazing place to see but is the risk too high for someone with my origins in terms of the various groups that are active around there? I would obviously not draw attention to this when there and will not go on the Israeli passport (!) Any comments would be helpful… the FCO advice is so different to what people who have been say that I don’t know what to think!

Hi Momo. I have a friend who is Lebanese but has an American passport and she has been to Israel on her USA passport, without any problem. They just can’t know what is your actual origin because there is no information exchange between the two countries. That is all what I can say, and I believe that it should not be different if it was the other way around, unless you have an Hebrew name, in that case I do’t know what to tell you.

No my name is not a Hebrew name. I know of blogs by people who have typically Jewish names and it has been fine for them too by their account. I just wondered what the bloggers on here think, or if they have heard of / know of anyone in a similar circumstance. I agree with you that there is no way they can know, though.

Hello! I’m traveling to Lebanon next week, to stay with a friend (native Lebanese). We’re spending most of our time in Beirut, where he lives, but are planning on going to Tripoli and Hermel city. I’m aware that the UK home office advises against all travel to these area. I’m just wondering if you know for what reason? And, is it safe to go there? As in, providing you’re cautious and don’t do anything stupid, would you advise against visiting? We’ll be traveling with two Lebanese locals and a driver from Beirut. Thanks!

Hi Robin, the reason is that there have been one-off clashes between Sunni and Alawi Muslims in one specific neighborhood quite isolated and far from the city center, a couple of years ago. That’s why. Ask you friends and they will tell you it is safe. However, since the UK advises against traveling there, just bear in mind that your regular travel insurance will not cover you during your stay in Tripoli.

Hi Joan. Thanks for your reply! That’s very good to know! My friend says we’ll avoid any ‘volatile’ areas. What about Hermel city? Would you say it’s fine to visit that area. The FCO warns against all travel there too. Also, any ‘must see’ places and tips/advice?

Just wanted to say that my wife and I visited Lebanon last year and it was an amazing place to visit. The people are warm and friendly. I had read all the travel advice from the government but never once felt unsafe. We took shared taxis which your told not to take but they are a great way to get around Beirut and cheap too. Hired a driver to take us to a few places, no problem there too, such a lovely old man who had great knowledge of the places we visited, Byblos and as far down as tyre. We enjoyed Lebanon so much 2 of our friends are on holiday there now from our recommendations. We are also going back in September this year, can’t wait!! My advice to anyone would be go and try Lebanon once and no doubt you’d go back again. Just use your head, follow the local customs and you’ll have a great time.

My father worked in Beirut in the late 1960’s and raved about Baalbek. I have finally decided to visit in October as it seems ok post the election. Is it easy and safe to visit Baalbek currently and the odd vineyard. Any restaurant recommendations in the old area of Beirut? Any other recommendations for a 5 day trip?

This might be a dumb question, but how is the language barrier in Lebanon? I see that the official language is Arabic, so being from the United States, will I have trouble traveling / getting around if I travel there without knowing someone inside Lebanon prior to going?

Hi Kyle. Most educated people speak both English and French. Outside of Beirut, it may be tricky to communicate but, in the end, with Google translator and gestures you will be more than fine.

Hello Against the Compass .
Me and my wife, we are planning to visit Lebanon in November. We really want to visit Beirut but it is our first trip in Middle East.
Before I read your article, I was worried about the safety of this trip. I feel much more calm now .

The plan is to stay 3 nights in Beirut. We’ll have 1 and a half day to explore Beirut and maybe we do a day trip in Byblos.
i) What do you suggest?
ii) It is worth the trip to Byblos?
Thank you in advance!

Hi there! Your plan sounds good but I would consider that you make a trip to Baalbek instead of Byblos. It is completely up to you but the ruins of Baalbek are some of the most impressive Roman ruins outside of Rome. The ones in Byblos are not as impressive and one goes there to wander around the old city, which is filled with expensive seafood restaurants. It is pretty, I don’t deny that, but I just prefer Baalbek. This is just a personal opinion!

I have visited Lebanon many times, the first being in 1989 during the civil war when there was a lull in the fighting. Unfortunately the war flared up while I was there and the only airport in Lebanon closed due to the heavy fighting so I had to escape to Syria and beg for a visa at the border (there is no Syrian embassy in Lebanon). This is something to keep in mind especially as Syria is now a different place and not somewhere to escape to.
Personally I have not enjoyed my trips as much as many of you have. Beirut is extremely hot, humid, overcrowded and polluted. There is a huge issue with refuse collection. The landfill site is full and no other landfill site has been set up. During rainy periods masses of waste flows through the streets. There has been a spike in respiratory infections as a result.
I first went to Baalbek in 1992 which was astounding and glorious. I took my children in 2010 and it was a whole different experience. It had become fenced off with an entrance fee and hawkers relentlessly followed and pestered us to the point where it was unbearable.
The Jeita Grotto is truly astounding and immense. I visited these in 1997 with a baby and a toddler. I was a little anxious as the safety railings were minimal. Recently there was a fatal fall so hopefully the authorities have finally improved the safety railing as a result.
My children and I usually get food poisoning when we go to Lebanon unless I do the cooking and we only drink bottled water.
We are also allergic to the numerous, pesticide resistant mosquitoes which seem to be around for about 8 months of the year.
Lebanese go out of their way to be hospitable but the favourite pastime in Lebanon is gossiping so it is more about being liked and showing off than true hospitality.
The economy is very bad, unemployment is high, all the divisions are still there and lots of Lebanese are trying to get out of the country.
Yes, Lebanon is a fascinating country with a long history and beautiful places to visit but go there with your eyes open.

Hello, what a great article of Lebanon. We are from Mexico and next year we are planning to go to Israel and are considering extending the trip to Lebanon for one week.
We have been in Jordan and our guide told us there are some countries in the ME that if you have been in Israel you might not get the permite to enter. Is it true? And if so, is Lebanon one of these countries? Thank you!

I was considering visiting Lebanon in February during winter to avoid the bulk of tourism. I have a Lebanese friend in country that has informed me greatly on the peoples and places. She is Christian so there are many places she has not been herself just for safety precautions.

My question is, seeing that Lebanese people are generally what I’d call egocentric, how would travel be for a black American? What are the perceptions and race relations? I worry that Lebanese are so outspoken and blunt that I’ll face instances of racism even unintentionally.

I’d hate to find myself in a situation or provocation that escalates because I may not be prepared for my reception by locals. My Lebanese friend has assured me that she can handle it and that most probably would remark in Arabic so I won’t understand their negative comments anyways.

Hi, to be honest, if you are a foreign tourist, I don’t think Lebanese have any problem based on your race or nationality, so you should be fine.
Moreover, I don’t understand why you say that Lebanese are so egocentric, as I felt totally the opposite. Whereas it is true that, in the capital, some wealthy Lebanese may seem arrogant, like in most worldwide capitals, other than that, which is the remaining 98% of the population, people were super kind and hospitable.

Hello again,

I was able to travel to Lebanon in April. Even after all the positive reviews, there was still anxiousness on my part. I’m happy to say that the 2 week stay was in deed safe. Of course the first few days I was weary of the young males trying convince me to purchase their wares. My friend laughed at my naïveté, responding with a warning never to buy anything from these types of solicitors. Anyways, they were harmless in the end.

I had so much fun in Beirut. The residents treated me very kindly. Friendly, yet outspoken, I was a bit uncomfortable with the unabashed commenting. The egocentrism I spoke of was in reference to what my Lebanese contacts informed me about prior. I didn’t mean anything terrible by using that wording. It is more of a conceitedness, vanity or possible borderline narcassisim that isn’t at all expressed in a harmful or purposely negative manner. For instance, one of the Lebanese girls accompanying my friend was told she should lose some weight! I thought it to be so rude but the Lebanese girls assured me comments on appearances are commonplace and not meanspirited in nature. That Lebanese are blunt with other Lebanese people. Chalked it up to being a cultural thing so I kept an open mind.

Anyways, after my 3rd or 4th day in country I had no safety concerns. Felt safer in Lebanon than I do back home in the United States by far. The beautiful landscapes were amazing. I also haven’t visited many places with as much history aside from the UK. The food was superb, specifically a dish called warak enab. I had fallen in love at first bite! Had a less than favorable reaction to something called shawarma(?). My friends informed me even they have stomach issues sometimes when having the chicken version. Spent 3 days in the hotel but no big deal there. Eat from what appear to be “Established” restaurants and possibly avoid street food if you have a weaker digestive system perhaps.

Seemed as if the people treated me even more nicely than they treated the Lebanese natives I toured with. When I asked about why, the friend that invited me to Lebanon stated, “You’re American, we love foreigners, especially westerners if only for the similarities we see in ourselves. You also are a tourist with which we will be just as fascinated to hear of where you come from, rather than seeing it on TV, as you are hearing about our country from the peoples perspective.” I took this to mean they’re aware media doesn’t quite portray Americans and Lebanese alike, in a fair light. So there was that. Also, Not one instance of hate speech or discrimination due to my race or citizenship. A man at a nightclub we visited even told me that black Americans are poorly depicted in the media which had shown him mostly negative stereotype given his limited contact with said peoples. He was pleasantly surprised with how respectful and easy going those he’d meet are. I told him of the worries about my race that I’d had prior to the stay in country. He bought me a drink and told me something I’ll never forget, “You are a man. I am a man. We as men should not shape our being from gossip by people that exist only for conquering this world through division”. That was the deepest thing I’ve heard in a good while. Anyways, we enjoyed some laughs together over current affairs like celebrity mishaps, Trump and even Lebanon’s poor infrastructure. I was shocked that nothing is off limits when it comes to Lebanese banter.

I’ve seemingly written a whole book here just to say that I very much enjoyed my visit to Lebanon. Again, Lebanon is as safe as most any country. The people are so accommodating, endearing, astonishingly beautiful inside and out as well, and welcoming. I guarantee it is rare to be shown such a great guest experience, not only in the Middle East, but almost anywhere else in the world as you’re able to receive in Lebanon. 10/10. Recommend anyone on the fence about visiting to book their flight already. You most likely will not regret it. May even find that Lebanon’s spirit is so intoxicating to the point you’ll forget all the misconceptions about the country. My heart will forever remain in Lebanon, where it was captured by it’s citizens amazing wealth of life. For all of Lebanon’s shortcomings, the people in my opinion were it’s most interesting tourist attraction. Go for the lovely landscapes, ancient history, atmospheric nightlife but return there because of the classy, extraordinarily individualistic people that populate the country!

Thank you so much to the creator of this blog for sharing content that convinced me to “risk” traveling Lebanon. Was my most enjoyed travels as an adult by far. Will attempt a trip to the Netherlands and then back to Lebanon as soon after as possible.

(Actually entertaining the idea of relocating to Lebanon for an extended period. Any information on this topic would be much appreciated)

Me, too! What an awesome trove of information. Thanks so much for this. And speaking of excellent resources, thank you, Joan, for your blog! Lebanon’s been #1 on my wish list since I was old enough to point it out on a map and savor my second-generation Lebanese mother’s cooking. I’m finally visiting for the very first time in October, all crazy with excitement while researching and taking care of travel insurance (huge thanks for the info on that, by the way), adding to the mile-long list of restaurants, etc. One quick question for you, Joan: do you have any favorite places or recommendations for where to see live music in Beirut? Any suggestions are welcome, especially places showcasing Lebanese artists. Thank you so much for what you do, and safe travels!

Hey man, thanks for your kind message! I didn’t really party or go out when I was there, so I can’t certainly tell. However, I am pretty sure that you can find something in Gemazyeh street, which is the street with the largest number of ”cool” bars

I was considering visiting Lebanon in March as the weather starts to change. Is there anything regarding the safety situation that has changed since writing this article?

Also in the event that protests, demonstrations, or incident occur, what advice would you give to a potential traveler?

The security situation hasn’t changed since then. if you see a public demonstration, the normal advice would be telling you to stay away from it, even though I wouldn’t see it a very big problem

RE: “one of the safest countries in the Middle East”. You’re pushing the concept of relative safety. If Lebanon had 99 terrorist bombings in 2017 and all the other countries in the middle East had 100, Lebanon is, in fact, “one of the safest”. However, it’s still not safe. You do your readers a huge disservice by speaking in relative terms and not absolute terms. Per your logic, a crashing jetliner is “safe” moments before it hits the ground. After all, no crash has happened and nobody is dead … yet. When dealing with people lives, don’t offer half baked ideas. If you’re going to claim safety, define your use of the term. You may feel “safe” surrounded by war that has not have filter over into your little community. Others may have a broader definition of the term that they feel keeps them possibly alive longer

Thanks for sharing your opinion but you seriously don’t know what are you talking about. It seems that you haven’t even been there, yet, you are giving non sense statistics. Go to Lebanon, see it with your own eyes and then we can discuss about it 

I agree. Although the article is very inspiring and apprecitable, some of the terms used seem quite generic and not supported by hard data or facts. A balanced review would encourage the reader to think logically. Surely, the media has very much exagerated things and even spred false news. however, Ignoring facts like 2006’s 33 day war, could lead the reader to question all the other postitive points of the article. Instead the author could simply state the fact that there have been incidents just like some of European countries. E.g With all the bombings and stuff London is still one of the most visited cities in the world.

The author may have partly, unawares, used personal experience as the base for travel being safe in Lebanon. After all, the blogs are about the author’s travels and experiences. That would be expected since we are being informed partly from occurances or lack thereof during time in country and partly from the author’s own research. No need to be hostile, if you feel there is error in one’s wording or judgement. Better to enlighten with your own research data from a non-emotional state. Or create your own blog with research refuting what you consider “counterfactual” information shared here.

Now that the war is winding down in Syria does anyone know if it is safe to take a bus from Palestine to Lebanon via Jordan? My boyfriend lives in Palestine and we would like to travel to Lebanon together since I have only been to Palestine I thought it would be nice to see more of the middle east that way.

My daughter want to visit Beirut and from there to it safe for 27 years old woman travel along.i worry about Lebanon she has a family.but visiting a balbek no there any group travel service they have perhaps from Lebanon tot email address is you can email me. Please I worried for her so much.thank you dear!

I am planning to Travel from India to Jerusalem and from there to Lebanon. Do i need to get the visa beforehand or can i get an on arrival Visa. Also, how safe is it to travel from Jerusalem to Lebanon.

Hi, my friend and I are visiting Lebanon in February. We are considering visiting Laboueh, Ras Baalbeck, St Maroun Caves and Kamouh el Hermel. Are these places safe for a day trip?

I had the pleasure of traveling near Lebanon (to Israel). Hopefully one day the Middle East can be seen as a great place for tourism. They have such beautiful weather and great food.

Hey Juan,
I know Lebanon but I am going to hike sections of the Lebanon Mountain Trail for the first time in April. Especially those in the north look great to me (2-4), do you know if they are safe? Tashea and el-Qemmamin are not that close to Hamra and Sharbin (which you marked on your no-go-zone-map) – but not that far either.

And if you have any additional recommendations or advice ragarding the LMT I am happy to hear that too 🙂 ! Cheers

Hi Joan
In terms of safety , what about Bekka valley and also Baalbek ruins . Ive hired a car and would prefer to drive myself as i really enjoy driving


The driving in Lebanon is crazy, but not more than other Arab countries and the more countryside you are, the fewer cars you find, so in Bekka Valley you’ll be just fine!

Hey, do you think it is still safe to go to Lebanon now considering the current situation between the US and Iran? Do you think Lebanon will be affected?

I am on of those people who thought Lebanon might not be safe for traveling. However, what you have described here, has completely changed my perspective. If all this is true then no doubt Lebanon is the safest place to travel in the middle east!

Iam jay from lebanon, no matter how much we tell you about lebanon that it is a safe, touristic, religious, traditional country, you only need to paxk your bags and book a ticket for this summer, you will definetely not regret it. You can reach me for any help or support.

I met an indian friend here at philippines, he is asking me if i am available to go to lebanon for a job at some restaurant or hotel.
I just want to ask if, is it safe to work at lebanon as an overseas worker?
Until now i am still thinking about it. It would be very helpful for me to know some informations about the offer.

Nasrullah has said that if the USA attacks Irsn, Hezbo will stack US interests. And we’d love to go to Baalbek but are hesitant because of that. Any late word?

Lebanon is not for one group of people as Joan said u habe sunni, shia and christians if u have no ties to any government (Spy) or something related u have nothing to worry about and the local really dig foreigners if u like check the american singers and stand up comedians who came and made parties in here and u will know how much safe it is for u

I noticed that you mentioned ISIS as a part of Sunnis . What is your point ???As a Sunni Muslim , isis is not part of us so when you talk about extremists , think about billions of people that you might hurt .
By the way , the prime minister of Lebanon is a Sunni Muslim .

Just to refresh your memory . This is your article .

Did you know that more than 40% of the population are Christians? No? Did you know that Sunni Muslims (the branch of Islam that ISIS draws its followers from) only make up 25% of the population?

In this country, there’s no place for extremism. Have you ever heard of any Lebanese who has radicalized and joined ISIS? Normally, they come from Syria, Saudi Arabia, Jordan or even Turkey. Lebanon is so culturally cluttered, that the chances of a person radicalizing are low.

Yeah, I perfectly know what I wrote and once again, I never said ISIS is part of Sunnis.

What I mean in that sentence means is that the people from ISIS are Sunni (this is a fact, not an opinion) and here was trying to analyze (through several reasons), why in Lebanon there is no room for extremism.

I think you really should improve your reading comprehension man

Your article is dead to the point bro at first i wasn’t gonna keep reading cause i thought its a lebanese were writing it but i kept reading just to see where the article is going and i was amazed how accurate u were thank you for the article and ur kind words i would gladly send u my info if u ever visit again u will have a friend that can take u where ever u want and for the people who doesn’t know we are the only ME country that raised a european flag (Spain) after a revenge attack on isis for the Bombing in spain and again u can add a friend to ur list in lebanon whenever u decide to visit again

I lived in Syria for a few months in 2005, but only visited Lebanon for the first time in 2013, to get as near to Syria as I could.
It was February and you could cut the air with a knife, in Tripoli, Baalbek and South Beirut. At Cola Bus Station, where there were banners with President al Assad on display.
In Tripoli they were selling FSA paraphernalia, and that group, to my mind, was a front for the Syrian Brotherhood, the instigators of the Syrian war.
There had been fights going on each night since 2005, when Syria withdrew its troops from Tripoli, between some Alawites and the Sunnis. I heard the gun fire and on the Friday the Imams in the various Mosques were arguing. I’ve been since then and the atmosphere has been different.
My view is that Mr Hariri, following his father’s death, would have thrown in his lot with the Sunni Islamists, had it not been the invasion of the foreign factions. The Brothers would at least accept a Parliamentary type system, but some of the invaders seemed not to be able to read the Quran even.
I returned in the autumn of 2014 and the tables had turned somewhat as there had occurred the kidnapping of the Maronite soldiers by IS, in Arsal, on the border with Syria. There were demos outside Zahle, in Bekka that had moved to the Beirut Parliament by 2015.
I believe Mr Hariri was frightened by then, and was ready to defend Lebanon. He is not an Islamist for sure.
At one point he told an American business woman, I met at the airport, that he was second on the IS hit list. She’d been on a delegation to Lebanon. It was shortly after, that he went to Saudi where Britain got to him for sure and another change began.
I’ve been watching, and Mr Hariri had befriended Tony Frangieh, a family friend of President al-Assad, to stand against Mr Aoun for the Presidency.
I understood his point about Mr Hariri’s father’s assassination but they still don’t know who was responsible. It seemed to me as an onlooker, and a member of Stop the War in Britain that it would have been counter-intuitive for Syria to have been responsible.
My bet is on Britain, but maybe it was the Israelis at its behest.
Don’t worry I always suspect my own ruling class as it is very powerful but hides behind America.
Meanwhile in Tripoli there have been been regional swings towards Sunni governors who are far more inclined to Islamism than Mr Hariri.
Lebanon is so divided into factions, that are also divided, it can be easily be disrupted. The last elections looked promising but now the people are at it again, much to Britain’s joy, it need war.

Hi, is a permit required for Sidon and Tyre. Since we are planning to stay a few days in Tyre and visit Sidon on one of the days. But we don’t intend to visit any other area around. Can anyone clarify. Thanks in advance.

I have read through the entire comments above and replies from you Joan, and I am inspired. I am in Cyprus at the moment and was considering taking a day trip to Lebanon, specifically Beirut. Do you think that having probably only about 12 hours in the city it would be worth it ?

Hey Dave, as far as I understand, the ferry goes to Tripoli, right? This means that you’ll need to take a bus to Beirut, which is 2-3 hours one way, plus the time you need to find and wait for the bus.
Just being realistic here. Lebanon is really worth a visit but I would personally just stick to Tripoli, which is much more Lebanese than Beirut btw, I mean more traditionally Lebanese. Beirut is a big city.
If you won’t have the chance to visit Lebanon in the next couple of years I’d definitely go.

I had been in Lebanon in January for two weeks. It was a great experience. I love Beirut, we also visited Tripoli, Sidon, Biblos, Balbeeck. We used shared taxi, and we didnt have any problem.
I think is a great place in ME.

We come to Lebanon as tourists from Russia on November 4, 2019. Will we be able to travel around the country in our rent car, due to rallies and road closures? Byblos, Tyr, Baalbek

Extremism has tarnished the name of some countries in the middle east. Due to that, a general misconception has formed about all countries in that area

Hi Guys,

I am thinking of visiting Lebanon with my family in the 3rd week of November, 2019. I wonder what situation is like in the country as of November. Have the protests stopped? Are the streets of Beirut still overrun and are they still blocking the roads? Please update!


I have just come back. During my stay I visited South Beirut. I would not advise anyone to go there. I have been all over Lebanon including the border towns with Syria and felt safe. South Beirut is a whole different ball game.

Yes, the South would be, if the Israelis manage to invade, that will be their only route through to Syria.
I’m going to Lebanon at the end of March and I’m praying Lebanon hasn’t broken into civil war before then. I hope to get a visa for Syria from Beirut before it’s too late and it’s too expensive for me to return to Syria. With the guides an’ all.
I’ve been expecting a civil war to happen since the demonstrations about the build up of rubbish on the streets in 2017. Call me a pessimist but it is extremely likely, particularly as one commentator says the people are calling for President Aoun’s resignation.
It was the Maronite factions that began the civil war in 1979 and they were divided between Gea Gea’s right wing Lebanese Forces, that executed people on behalf of the Israelis, and Aoun, a staunch supporter of Sadam Hussain, late President of Iraq, and who wanted to be PM. That would have been a direct infringement of the constitution.
As for Hizb Allah that party seems the only one ready to defend the country against the Jews and the Sunni Islamists. As Said Nazrillah has given up the idea of a Shiah Islamic state, it is that party that has my vote. Anyway I love Baalbek, and my Shiah friends there are proud to be Lebanese.
Interestingly Baalbek is no longer a red zone, but a yellow one on the British government site and neither are, the mainly Palestinian, Shatila/Sabra districts of Beirut. There is a huge problem with the latter in that many Palestinians who were given refuge in Syria, live as refugees in those camps, and some have huge sympathies for the Syrian Brothers.
The whole situation in Lebanon is more murky than dangerous at the moment, but watch your backs everyone and don’t soak up any propaganda.

Hi guys,
I’m planning on spending my honeymoon in Jounieh from the 17th of December. Is it safe to travel to Lebanon?

We just returned from a 10-day trip to Lebanon. We traveled extensively throughout the country, without incident, visiting small countryside villages and large cities, famous historical sights and more. We did not experience any threatening circumstances or unpleasant inconveniences. It is a shame if you pass up the opportunity to visit this great, friendly country, based on travel advisories or media reports.

Our group visited such places as the Las Salinas Resort, near Tripoli, with its 5 swimming pools, bowling alley, 4 movie theaters and health center with every conceivable feature (visit their website). Also, we had the pleasure of visiting the beautiful Chateau Belle-Vue Winery and Le Telegraphe de Belle-Vue Hotel, in the small village of Bhamdoun. What a great story it offers!

At all turns, we were welcomed and received and unequaled hospitality and great food at every meal. Don’t pass this up. It’s possibly safer in Lebanon than in your own neighborhood.

The border between Lebanon and Syria was far from secure during the early years of the Syrian war. In 2014 a number of Maronite soldiers were captured by Islamic State at Hermel in North Bekka Valley, the protests outside the parliament in Beirut lasted 4 years. After that it was notable that PM Hariri who I suspect had supported IS up to then conscripted or recruited more troops into the army, they were particularly deployed in North Bekka and North Tripoli. Also Hariri and the Hizb’Allah leader Hasan Nasrillah stopped the displaying of paraphenalia on the streets, and the gun fight battles that had raged in Tripoli capital for nearly 20 years.
I’ve never seen anyone drinking in the streets in Beirut only outside cafes in the Ashrafiyyeh and Germayzi areas.
The Christians are divided over Syria in Lebanon, and during the civil war the Maronites were divided in two, with one side supporting Iraq and the other the Israelis. The latter employed guards at the airport along with the Syrian and the Lebanese government to check passports and luggage before people were allowed to pass through the actual customs. Lastly there were reports in the Lebanese Daily Star of 2 Christians from Tripoli joining IS.
Having said all that I like Lebanon and have travelled around on my own apart from the Hermel region that doesn’t have public transport. I found Syria far less factionalised or sectarian and believe that’s why Britain stirred up the crap there.

Hi thanks for the absolutely amazing content!
There is a travel guide where Lebanon is rated 3. Reconsider to travel and 4. Do not travel.
1# I have 3 days business trip in February, is it ok to travel;
2# Also it is too expensive to use mobile and internet. Is it any other cost benefit and value for money option?
May I have A$AP your advice?
Once again thanks a lot.

Hi Thanos, yes, it should be OK to travel and yes, mobile internet is crazy expensive, but if you only have 3 days, there is no point in buying a SIM card. You can just connect to WiFi when available. Enjoy!

I am a lebanese who is currently sitting in Tenerife and enjoying the sun while reading this article. For anyone thinking about going there, trust me its a very intresting experience. Thank you for sharing!

Revisiting your site and forum for the latest updates on the travel situation in Lebanon – thanks so much to you, Joan, and to everyone else for posting your stories and suggestions! I finally made my first trip over there in October 2019, did a two-week tour with a group, and loved it so much that I’m already planning my next trip over this year, even as the situation unfortunately seems to be escalating. One can never predict the future, but it just feels like now’s not the time to forget this corner of the world, but to be an ambassador for it, instead. Thanks again for your inspiration!

We are booked to travel to Beirut for a week in mid March 2020 for leisure. Some of stories about situation in country rather alarming! Flights already booked but holding off on booking hotels etc. in case flights cancelled or UK Foreign Office warn against travel. I realise country in a difficult position economically and politically and that things can change. Any advice?

Do not change anything! you will have a 1 of a kind experience in our country , never has the economic situation been stable in our country 🙂 we know how to manage, i can help for advice accomodation and tours for very reasonable prices…from 1 traveler to another a female passionate about her country…you can email me for all/any info

How is the travel restrictions with Covid-19? I have a booked a trip with Hotel from 22. June to 24. June. I just want a guided tour and taste the famous food. I’m from UK but on other business in Istanbul and wanted to use the opportunity to return to the region. I have previously visited Syria before the war and it was a fantastic holiday.

I totally agree i think your more likely to get hit by car anywhere in the world than let alone a terrorist attack besides all the capitalist/corporate/socialist global crime that is run by central banks, insurance, slavery, chemicals (there is a pill for every thing these is that not crime!) and full shit global media…

It is a so sad and it’s a shame for country like Lebanon with such a beauty of landscape, foods weather and people to be divided simply because Muslim groups have created such division between themselves. I am a Muslim I believe in one god and my dear friends are both Shia and Sunnis. Muslims must create a message in mind that in the Middle East we must come together to Unite to show the the whole Middle East is a beautiful place for people to visit, live and travel. I pray and hope for the day soon….

“Did you know that more than 40% of the population are Christians? No? Did you know that Sunni Muslims (the branch of Islam that ISIS draws its followers from) only make up 25% of the population?”

WHAT?! This is pretty… Islamophobic. And I’m an Orthodox Christian btw. Not that it matters

Its just annoying with so many creeps catcalling and stalking, you can’t do anything without those creepy men showing up.

Amazing Article… That’s exactly true what you mentioned… You almost know More than us (citizens). When foreign write such articles it means kroe than true

Beirut is safe? Sure, if you don’t mind being kidnapped or blown up by some lunatic from Hezbollah. The U.S. State Dept. has issued a travel warning, which is still in effect, for Lebanon. It is most certainly NOT safe to travel there.

I get that you traveled to Lebanon a few years ago so this is outdated. But at this point this is just irresponsible to leave this up because the security situation has changed rapidly. MTV News just reported that in the past two months there were more weapons purchases than at any time in history. Hezbollah has openly assassinated multiple critics for the past few months. Thefts have increased a lot and armed robbery is becoming more common as the economy deteriorates.
The Lebanon you saw 2 or 3 years ago is not the Lebanon that exists today. Lebanon is a memory. I’m sure some tourists come here and end up completely fine. But should you be just saying it’s totally safe in 95% of the country? Absolutely not. Lebanon is my favorite country in the world and I wish I could say to come here but people should not be coming right now.

Idk why u would post something extremely incorrect like this. I’m Lebanese and ur giving people misleading information, Lebanon rn is probably one of the most dangerous countries in the world, extreme corruption, which leads to people doing anything including killing and robbing. Don’t go to Lebanon if u not Lebanese.

I have traveled to several countries in the Middle East (Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Syria, Iran), and I have to say that your article is really misleading… it is very dangerous to give wrong information to people regarding safety in Lebanon. For me, by far, Lebanon is the most dangerous country of the 5 countries I mentioned (yes, I found it way more dangerous than Iraq or the parts of Syria where I went to). Many parts of Beirut are really dangerous, as well as many other parts of the country, and locals do always warn tourists about the safety issues in Lebanon. It is hard to imagine how many weapons are in the country, and so many areas of the country are controlled by armed militias. It’s a wonderful country, but it is definitely not the safe country described in this article.

Well wish me luck I’m going to Lebanon in September. The country has suffered for appointing a president Britain doesn’t like, Mr Aoun, but that’s the way it is. Lebanon is never far away from civil war either I’m afraid, my first time was in 2013, and it was a knife edge, since many Sunnis were, including Hariri (the former and later Prime Minister) were on the point of joining Islamic State.
Lebanon is patronised by the big powers, and I suspect the Russian contribution will or has stopped, because of Ukraine and the American invasion of Poland. It’s funny everyone pounces on Hizb’ullah, that was hardly the worse perpetrator of the civil war. I’d say the most dangerous group was then was the Maronite militia led by Mr Geagea, the Philange, that was commited to the Israeli cause and did the Israeli’s work for it. I know it stood guard at the airport, checking passports along with the Syrian and Lebanese armies. There’s no innocent faction in Lebanon they are all armed to the hilt. Yes I guess crime has risen but that’s what poverty does.

This article is absurd. Lebanon is most certainly not a safe destination. Stop spreading false information. At present, stay away from Lebanon, unless you don’t care about getting killed, maimed, or kidnapped.

You are being ridiculous, I was there in Sept, I only stayed in Beirut and Balbek, my usual places but went to Syria for a week and no-one said boo to me. It was as I’d left it in 2018 apart from my country, Britain, making waves for it, but no change there.

Hi Helen, Lebanon was good last September, or at least it was in Balbek and Beirut. I’ve been there loads of times and don’t tour, I just stay where I know people. The country has hardly any power, so it will be cold now. All the cars were back on the road and the black-market economy was legal (don’t ask). The tourists in my hostel were nearly all young, a lot were adventuring to Syria, to say they’d been I presume, but Syria and Lebanon needs an economy boost.
Lebanon has been ostracised by Britain yet again and then every country follows. This time the excuse is that the country can’t decide on a president, but before the current one it didn’t have a president for a decade. Anyway all I was hearing was that President Aoun was no good and it is true that he did start the civil war back in 1979 but they have to blame someone. Also Britain hates him.

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