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Middle Eastern Marvels – 1 Lebanon & Syria 08 Days Tour

0
  • 08 Days
  • Max Guests : 20
  • Wifi Available
  • Apr 13 - 20 & May 13 - 20

Tour Details

LEBANON
Lebanon is located in the heart of the Middle East but, believe it or not, over 40 per cent of its population belongs to different branches of Christianity, including Protestants, Armenian Apostolic, Greek Orthodox and Melkite Catholics, just to name a few. Today, both Muslims and Christians coexist together, in peace and this can be seen not only in the Lebanese daily life but also in the city’s architecture.

An absolutely enchanted corner of the Mediterranean, there are many reasons why you should travel to Lebanon. The food is legendary, its stormy past, too. There are countless things to do in Lebanon, many places to visit, people to meet and stories to tell.

From the hipster cafés and underground clubs of Beirut to Palestinian and Syrian refugee camps, remote Christian monasteries, the most impressive Roman ruins, the best food and wine in the region, combined with our beloved Middle Eastern chaos and souks, Lebanon is an often misunderstood and underrated country which, despite its small size, is home to huge cultural diversity, adaptable to any kind of traveller and budget.

SYRIA
Syria is a great country, home to one of the oldest civilizations ever, so visiting Syria from a tourism perspective is an absolute must!

Syria is one of the larger countries of the Middle East and shares its borders to the north with Turkey, to the east with Iraq, with Jordan and Israel to the south, and with Lebanon to the south-west. An added natural beauty is its short coastline on the east Mediterranean Sea.

Syria is epic. Visiting Syria is an enriching experience. The Syrians are welcoming people, really friendly. In northern Syria, not too far north of the little pocket where the last communities of Aramaic speakers live, lie Syria’s mysterious Dead Cities, “780 abandoned settlements dating back to between the fifth and eighth centuries.”

There are also remnants of an Iron Age temple from around 1200 BC. There’s so much history in Syria — Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek, the Silk Road, the Crusades. But this region — probably the entire country — is seriously under-touristed. Seeing these lesser-known ruins would certainly be on my itinerary. Syria….an experience worth living.

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From1,200€
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1699

Price Includes:

  • Accommodation with Breakfast Lebanon, Syria (4*- 3*).
  • English speaking professional guide
  • Local guide in (Lebanon).
  • Transfer from Beirut Airport/to hotel.
  • Transport.
  • Approvals for visa.
  • Security clearance.
  • Entrance fees to all sites mentioned in the program.
  • Departure tax.
  • Assistance 24/24 on mobile phone, in Syria.
  • Tips in hotels

Price Excludes:

  • Airline tickets to Beirut – approximate fares to be expectedLIS-FRA-BEY €515 per person, one suitcase. ** LIS-DXB-BEY €583 per person, one suitcase. **
  • Drinks, Lunch, Dinner.
  • Personal expenses.
  • The cost of the visa at border; for Europeans (60 Euros or 70 $).
  • PCR Test (100 $) for non - vaccinated.
  • Tips for guide and driver.
  • Travel Insurance – we recommend World Nomads https://www.worldnomads.com/

** pricing advised is an estimate value based on survey performed in May22.

Extra:

– Plane ticket reservation: €30

Itinerary

Day 1 - 13 Apr 2024 - Arrival – Beirut

Meeting at the airport according to the schedule of your arrival.
Transfer to the hotel.
Dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 2 - 14 Apr 2024: Beirut – Beit Eddine – Sidon – Beirut

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure towards Beit Eddine and visit of the Palace.
Continue to Sidon.                                                                      

Sidon (or Saïda): Port city of the Lebanese coast, mentioned to in many documents since the fourteenth century.It was, for a long time, a very active shopping center.

Dominated by a citadel and open to a port, the third in Lebanon, it continues, as in the past, to be surrounded by vegetable gardens, banana and lemon trees. And while its old quarters still retain their medieval charm, its main streets are lined with modem shops where all kinds of goods and pastries accumulate.

To Beirut. 

                                              

Our final stop will be Chateau Ksara Lebanon’s most famous winery. We’ll visit the natural caves which are used by the winery and enjoy a wine tasting of your choice!

To Beirut. Dinner and overnight at the hotel. 

Day 3 - 15 Apr 2024: Beirut– Jeita – Byblos – Beirut

Breakfast at the hotel.

The Jeita Grotto is a system of two separate, but interconnected, karstic limestone caves spanning an overall length of nearly 9 kilometres. The caves are situated in the Nahr al-Kalb valley within the locality of Jeita, 18 kilometres north of the Lebanese capital Beirut.
Though inhabited in prehistoric times, the lower cave was not rediscovered until 1836 by Reverend William Thomson; it can only be visited by boat since it channels an underground river that provides fresh drinking water to more than a million Lebanese.

Continue to Byblos. Lunch along the way.                                                                                    
Located 40 km north of Beirut, Byblos is one of the oldest cities in the world. Human presence has been registered on this same site, since about 9000 years ago. A flourishing city under the pharaonic empire during the 3rd and 2nd millennium BC
It was a prestigious commercial, religious and cultural centre of the Canaaneo-Phoenician coast.            


Back to Beirut.    

Day 4 - 16 Apr 2024: Beirut – Baalbek - Anjar – Damascus

Breakfast at the hotel.

Visit of Baalbek: Baalbek is an emblematic site of Lebanon.
The first traces of human occupation on this site date back to the 3rd millennium BC. AD incorporated into the empire of Alexander the Great, the city was called Heliopolis in tribute to the Sun God. The city was then included in the Roman Empire.

Fabulous buildings were built there. Thus, the temple of Jupiter would have outgrown everything that was built in the Empire, including Rome!

Anjar: Umayyad city dating from the eighth century, it was built under the order of Caliph Walid I. It was located on the caravan route and was therefore an important shopping center.
It owes its name to the source Ayn al-Jar that once fed a lake on which Noah’s Ark had landed.    

Continue to Damascus.

Day 5 - 17 Apr 2024: Visit of Damascus

Breakfast at the hotel.                                                                                   
Guided tour of Damascus. Lunch during the visit.                                                                                  
The National Museum – Its visit provides an overview of the civilizations that have succeeded in Syrian soil. It contains statues, seals, jewellery, masks, mosaics, tablets and weavings from the most important sites in the country.                                                          

The Umayyad Mosque – Located in the heart of the Medina, the mosque is distinguished by its prayer room, its courtyard and its walls covered with mosaics.                                                                               

“EI-Azem Palace: Not far from the Great Mosque, in the labyrinth of the souk is the palace EI-Azem. It is considered as the sumptuous model of the Damascene house whose exterior simplicity and sobriety do not suggest anything about a beautiful and rich interior, with many varieties of flowers, fruit trees and water jets”                                                                                                                                                   

Saint Ananian Church: lt is of particular importance because it is attached to the memory of Saint Paul. Before his conversion to Christianity, he had a vision here that blinded him for several days and gave him an unshakeable faith.                                                                               

Souk AI-Hamidiye: The most beautiful souk of Damascus. lts shops display ali sorts of goods, especially clothes, fabrics, pastries and handicrafts.

Overnight in Damascus.

Day 6 - 18 Apr 2024 - Damascus – Maaloula– Crack des Chevaliers – Al Mishtaya

Breakfast at the hotel.

Departure towards Maaloula village famous for its houses dug in the rock like beehives and especially because it still speaks Aramaic, the language of Christ!

Visit the Crac des Chevaliers: Most famous Fortress of the Middle Ages. It is the symbol of an era of bloody struggles between Muslims and Crusaders. The crusaders made it the basic element of their system of strongholds on the coast.
It is so vast and so impregnable that it has become the symbol of a whole era of bloody struggles between Muslims and Crusaders.                                                                                                                            

Continue to Al Mishtaya,  overnight at the hotel.

Day 7 - 19 Apr 2024 - Al Mishtaya – Palmyra- Damascus

Breakfast at the hotel. 

Departure to Palmyra: The one that the Romans baptized Palmyra (the city of palms), and that the Syrians call Tadmor (miracle in Aramaic), is the most important oasis of the Syrian desert.
Located 240 km from Damascus, Palmyra is the city of all superlatives.
It arises in the midst of golden sands that extend to infinity. An oasis of columns, remains and palm trees that testifies to the splendour of this city that made, one day, tremble Rome …

The temple of Bel: It was for the Palmyrenes what Zeus was for the Greeks. Its temple is the largest and most majestic building in Palmyra, a unique example of fusion between Greco-Roman and oriental-inspired architecture.
The theatre and the big colonnade: It crosses the city on more than one kilometre, by which the caravans arriving from the desert, passed.

Tombs: including tombs towers, tombs dug, tombs temples or individual tombs.   

Continue to Damascus.

Day 8 - 20 Apr 2023: Departure

Breakfast at the hotel.
Transfer to the airport according to flight schedule, flight on scheduled flight or transfer back to Beirut.

 

Group minimum 06

Rates:
EUR1200 Per person sharing 
​Accommodation in Double/Twin rooms, increment 1 single room.

Essentials: 

Will be sent with full itinerary when confirmed

Check List: 

Will be sent with full itinerary when confirmed

Passport:

Click here to check the visa requirements for Lebanon
Click here to check the visa requirements for Syria


Weather:

LEBANON
While it has four distinct seasons, uniquely for a Middle Eastern country, and so can be visited all year-round, the best time to go to Lebanon is definitely spring. The weather is pleasantly warm and dry, ideal for the coast, the mountains and exploring the country’s many historic sites.

Lebanon is nowhere near as arid as other Middle Eastern countries, with a quite moderate climate and four distinct seasons. Late spring, May and June, as well as the autumn months of October and November, are the best months for trekking in places such as the Kadisha Valley or Horsh Ehden and wine tasting in the Bekaa Valley.

Summer temperatures can be oppressive on the coast where many cities are situated, up to around 25°C to 28°C in Beirut, whereas it’s substantially cooler at higher elevations. The best time to go to Lebanon is the spring and autumn, when it’s far milder, the scenery is at its most beautiful, and the archaeological sites are not at all busy.

SYRIA
Spring and autumn are the best seasons to visit Syria. March to May is the spring while autumn is the time between September to November. The weather during this time is cool, mild and pleasant. Spring witnesses the blooming of beautiful flowers. It is extremely pleasant to travel within Syria in the cooler temperature of autumn.

Average temperatures in Syria vary drastically. Considering humidity, temperatures feel very nice much of the year, but hot in the summer and cold in the winter with a very low chance of rain or snow throughout the year. The area is somewhat temperate — in the 51st percentile for pleasant weather — compared to tourist destinations worldwide. Weeks with ideal weather are listed above.

If you’re looking for the very warmest time to visit Syria, the hottest months are July, August, and then June. See average monthly temperatures below. The warmest time of year is generally early August where highs are regularly around 37.9°C with temperatures rarely dropping below 23.9°C at night.


Currency:

LEBANON
The official currency is the Lebanese Pound (LBP), which is divided into 100 piastres; the Lebanese Pound is locally known as the Lira. US dollars are accepted throughout the country.

ATM machines are widely available in Lebanon except in isolated towns and cash can be withdrawn from banks during business hours.
Credits cards are widely used.

Tipping is customary in Lebanon and service staff are usually tipped around 10 to 15 percent of the bill. Porters, hotel staff, valets, and doormen usually receive a nominal fee, depending on the area, service, and establishment.

SYRIA
​The official currency is the Syrian pound (SYP), which is divided into 100 piastres. Travellers can change money at official exchange offices, hotels and at different shops; GBPs and USDs are the best foreign currencies to visit with.
International sanctions have blocked ATMs and credit cards, so travellers will have to bring enough cash for the duration of their stay. If necessary, travellers can withdraw USD from most ATMs in Lebanon, as the capital, Beirut, is about a two-hour drive away from Damascus.
Visitors can also exchange Syrian pounds for Lebanese pounds or USD in Beirut. They’re unlikely to get the same opportunity outside of Lebanon

Visitors ordinarily tip waiters, bartenders, hotel staff and taxi drivers in Damascus. Waiters generally receive a tip of between 10 and 20 percent, depending on the quality of the service. Taxi drivers expect a tip of between 10 and 20 percent; hotel staffs usually receive between 2 and 5 USD.


Vaccination:

Covid Lebanon
Passengers must have:
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 14 days and at most 6 months before departure; or
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated and received a booster dose; or
– a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken at most 48 hours before departure from the first embarkation point; or
– a negative COVID-19 rapid antigen test taken at most 24 hours before departure from the first embarkation point. The test certificate must have a QR code.

Passengers transiting through Beirut (BEY) to Syria must have:
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 14 days and at most 6 months before departure; or
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated and received a booster dose;
– a negative COVID-19 PCR test result issued at most 48 hours before departure and are subject to a COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival, at their own expense; or
– a negative COVID-19 rapid antigen test taken at most 24 hours before departure from the first embarkation point. The test certificate must have a QR code.

Covid Syria
Syria is open for tourism. Passengers must have a negative COVID-19 PCR test result issued at most 96 hours before departure from the first embarkation point.
– This does not apply to:
– passengers younger than 12 years;
– passengers with a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 7 days before departure.

Passengers could be subject to a COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival.
A completed “Passenger Locator Form” (PLF) must be presented upon arrival.

At the end of the tour and departure to Lebanon, or Jordan, you do not need PCR test if you want to stay in Lebanon and if you are leaving Lebanon directly, the matter depends on the destination.

If you want to leave for UAE, from Damascus airport, you don t need PCR test, if you are fully vaccinated.​

 


Trip Highlights:

LEBABON
Beirut
Baalbek
Byblos
Jeita

SYRIA
Historically known as the cradle of civilization.
Damascus – old and new
Traditional Souks
Maaloula village
Palmyra
Most famous fortress of the Middle Ages

 

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