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There are 5 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Lebanon. All of these five sites are listed under the Cultural category.
Lebanon UNESCO Sites
- Anjar (1984)
- Baalbek (1984)
- Byblos (1984)
- Ouadi Qadisha (the Holy Valley) and the Forest of the Cedars of God (Horsh Arz el-Rab) (1998)
- Tyre (1984)
Anjar is one of five cultural UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Lebanon. It is a town within the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon’s Zahle District. The site was designated as UNESCO property in 1984 because the ruins depict the layout of the traditional palace-cities during the ancient times. The ruins and their corresponding ancient layouts had been preserved since they were initially planned and built under the Umayyad civilization. This town served as a major commercial center during the Umayyad civilization as it is strategically located at the crossing point of two trade routes.
This UNESCO town is also commonly referred to as Haoush Mousa. It was discovered by archaeologists in the late 1940s. Since then, more excavations were done at the site that revealed a fortified city filled with 42 towers and walls.
Baalbek is a Phoenician city that is another cultural site listed under the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Lebanon. This ancient city served as a site of worship for a triad of deities. During the Roman times, it still served an important religious function and thousands of pilgrims flocked to this city.
To this day, what is left of this once important religious and pilgrimage site are the colossal structures that are left throughout the ancient city. These structures are also notable for their ability to exhibit ancient Imperial Roman architecture.
Byblos is a Mediterranean city located within the Mount Lebanon Governorate in Lebanon. Listed as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Lebanon, this city has had a long history of settlement that dated back to the 8800 BC. Some sources also claim that this city was built by Cronus and served as the first Phoenician city ever built.
To this day, the city is still inhabited making it one of the continuously inhabited cities in the world, and in the ancient times. There have been many civilizations that have developed throughout its history and each of those left behind ruins that make up what the city now has become. From citadels, to churches, to Persian fortifications, these are just some of the ruins you will find within this world heritage property.
Ouadi Qadisha (the Holy Valley) and the Forest of the Cedars of God (Horsh Arz el-Rab) (1998)
Another entry into the list of cultural UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Lebanon, the Qadisha Valley is one of the world’s most significant early Christian monastic settlements. Many of the monasteries found within this valley have been around for many centuries. They are located in a rugged landscape with dramatic views. Near these monastic settlements, you will also find the great forest of cedars of Lebanon. They are considered valuable in the building of the great religious structures.
This property was inscribed into the list of UNESCO sites in 1998. The valley is located at the foot of the North of Mount-Lebanon chain. The rocky cliffs among the valleys are considered a place for meditation and worship. This area is also considered as having the largest collection of Christian monasteries and hermitages since Christianity first spread.
Inscribed in 1984, Tyre completes the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Lebanon. The legends claim that purple dye originated in the city of Tyre, which is located in the South Governorate of Lebanon. This ancient Phoenician city is also known as the birthplace of Dido and Europa. It is among the largest cities in Lebanon and is where you will find one of the largest ports in the nation. Tourism is a primary industry that supports the economy.
One of the reasons why tourists flock to Tyre is due to the many archaeological remains in Tyre. These remains are mostly during the Roman times. Some of the notable structures in Tyre includes the 12th century cathedral built by the Venetians, Roman baths, Roman arena, and the walls of the ancient Crusader castle.