THE snow season in Lebanon runs from late December until early April, very similar in length to that of the more famous Alps.
Being only two or three hours away from any country in the Gulf region has definite advantages. There are six ski resorts in the country, all catering to skiers and snowboarders of all levels, from beginners to serious cross-country skiers.
Faraya Mzaar Kfardebian Ski Resort operates 42 slopes and more than 80 kilometres of ski tracks. Situated just above the village of Ouyoune El Simane in Kfardebian, Mount Lebanon, the resort’s base level starts at 1,850m and from the 2,465m top of Mzaar there is a spectacular 360 degree view of the other peaks and the Mediterranean Sea. Coastal towns and even Beirut might be seen on a clear day.
Hotels in the area include the five-star InterContinental Mzaar Mountain Resort and Spa, the four-star Terre Brune, the Merab Hotel, three-star, and the Auberge Suisse Inn as well as many more affordable chalet accommodation options.
The Cedars Ski Resort is located in a picturesque part of the north of the country. Sitting at 2,000m, this resort has a slightly longer season than the others, sometimes beginning in November and often lasting until late April. Cross-country skiing is particularly appealing here, mainly because of the many plateaus offered by the resort.
Après-ski activities could include a visit to its cedar forests, ancient sites including the old village of Bcharreh, Gebran – Khalil Gebran’s museum (Lebanon’s most famous poet, artist and novelist), and Maronite churches and monasteries found within the Kadisha valley. Online booking and information about skiing in Lebanon is available from www.skileb.com
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