Many people associate Lebanon with ancient ruins, beach life, a lively and beautifully located capital, and perhaps still with the civil war that raged in the country for many years. Less known, however, is the possibility of skiing in this Mediterranean and Middle Eastern country. Still, skiing can actually be found close to the capital. Moreover, you can get a great view over Beyrut, other coastal cities, mountain ranges and the Mediterranean Sea from Mzaar, the top of the Faraya Mzaar ski area. It takes even less than an hour to drive up to the slopes from the capital.
The rental equipment is fairly good, , and once you have your lift pass - beware of the many impatient people trying to skip lines - you are ready to go up and get a taste of Lebanese snow. The lifts are quite old and pretty slow, unfortunately, but otherwise skiing here is great. The Faraya Mzaar ski area is large enough to keep you skiing for a few days. The slopes are never really difficult or long and almost always quite wide. Moreover, if you go a little outside the main area, you can find some of the slopes completely for yourself and enjoy nature and the thrill of skiing down the white powder all alone or with your friends.
Another great advantage of skiiing at Faraya Mzaar is that it is mountain range like the Alps, which means that almost all hills are skiable and it is quite easy to ski off piste. Beware of stones coming through the snow, though. The second day of skiing, we found the lift of the highest slope open, and when we got off at Mzaar, the highest point of the entire ski area of Faraya Mzaar, we marvelled at the view over Beyrut, some coastal cities, and a late afternoon sun reflecting on the Mediterranean. After skiing down and driving back to the coast, we were able to swim in the Mediterranean less than two hours after having fun in the snow of Faraya Mzaar - an experience to remember.
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Faraya Mzaar Skiing (). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Faraya Mzaar Skiing.
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