Lebanon Tourist Information
See Useful Arabic Words & Phrases
Lebanon is a liberal democracy with a constitution agreed upon in 1926 but amended many times since then (last time was in 1990). The Lebanese Republic achieved independence in 1943.
|Area ||10,452 km2|
|Population ||3,562,699 (2002)|
|Capital population ||1,452,112 (2002)|
The political system was then adapted to satisfy the deep sociological and historical needs created by the presence of eighteen religious communities within the country.
Despite the resent years of war during the period 1975 to 1990, Lebanon nowadays resembles an extremely active building site.
Southwestern Asia, bordering eastern coast of the Mediterranean sea, bounded on the north and east by Syria, on the south by Isreal, and on the west by the Mediterranean sea. See map in Map & Sites page.
|Official language||Arabic||Second language||French & English|
|Religions||Muslims 75% - Christians 24%||Measures||Metric|
|Time||GMT +02:00 - US EST +7||Electricity||110/220 V, 50 AC|
|Currency||Lebanese Pound (see below)||Int'l Dialing Code||00961|
|Government Offices||8:00 to 14:00 (Mon to Sat)|
|Banks||8:00 to 12:30 - to 12:00 Saturday|
|Shops & Malls||9:00 to 18:00 - to 17:00 in Summer|
|Private Sector||8:00 to 17:00 - with one or two hours lunch break|
|Note: during the holy month of Ramadan working hours are usually reduced.|
A valid passport and a visa are required to enter Lebanon. Visas are delivered by Lebanese diplomatic missions abroad
Lebanon has always known the freedom of money transfer, permitting any person to bring in or take out any capital of his/her choice at any time without restriction.
Note: No Israeli stamp or any crossing point with Israel stamp should be on your passport this includes Araba border, Sheikh Hussein border, Rafah border, and Taba border.
|Currency & Exchange Facilities|
The currency of Lebanon is Lebanese Pound (called Lira) - 1 US Dollar equals LL 1513.750 (1 May 2001).
Coin denominations are: 50, 100, 250, and 500 liras.
Paper denominations are: 500, 1000, 5000, 10.000, 20.000, 50.000, and 100.000 liras.
After the drastic devaluation of the Lebanese currency in the late eighties, the whole economy is dollarized. Though today many transactions are quoted in the Lebanese currency, large purchases and real estate deals are conducted in US dollars.
Major credit cards, such as Visa, Master Card, Diners Club, and American Express, are accepted in large establishments throughout the country. ATMs are becoming more numerous and many are located outside bank branches and in the business areas of major cities.
Lebanon enjoys an essential Mediterranean climate with rainy winters and long warm summers with an average of 300 sunny days a year.
The winter is mild on the coast and snowy in the mountains. Annual rainfall ranges from 700 to 1200mm.
The summer is hot on the coast and mild in the mountains. In some spring months, one can ski in the mountains and swim on the coast, both in the same day.
Average temperature in Centigrade for Beirut (coastal) and Zahle (Bekaa)
|New Year||1st January||St. Maroun's Day||9th February|
|Good Friday||1 Day||Easter Monday||1 Day|
|Labor Day||1st May||Martyr's Day||6th May|
|Ascention||15th August||All Saints Day||1st November|
|Independence Day||22nd November||Christmas Day||25th Dec & 6th Jan|
Islamic holidays based on Hijri/Lunar calendar
|Eid Al-Fiter||3 days marking end of Ramadan (fasting month)|
|Eid Al-Adha||3 days at the end of Hajj|
|Islamic New Year||1st of Moharram|
|Ashoura||10th of Moharram|
|Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) Birthday||12th Rabe'a El-Awwal|
|Al-Isra' Wal Mi'raj||27th Rajab|
|Tourist Information Offices|
|Ministry of Tourism - Tourist Information||+961 (1) 340940|
|Middle East Airlines (MEA)||+961 (1) 629125 - 822780|
|Airport Information||+961 (1) 628000|
|Emergency Phone Numbers|
|Nationwide Emergency||112||Police Operation||160|
|Tourist Police||350901/343504||Beirut Information||427714/5|
|Jounieh Information||900000/9301111||Sidon Information||721221/725811/2|
|Tripoli Information||200400/1||Zahle Information||800169|
Tipping is a way of showing your satisfaction with a service rendered. Tips to your driver, guide and the hotel personnel are not included and left to your discretion.