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Safety and sightseeing in Beirut 2014/5

Safety and sightseeing in Beirut 2014/5

Old Apr 7, 14, 9:06 pm
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Safety and sightseeing in Beirut 2014/5

any updates? planning a short visit (2-3 days) un July...not sure if I should book...
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Old Apr 9, 14, 2:36 am
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Originally Posted by roland_wa View Post
any updates? planning a short visit (2-3 days) un July...not sure if I should book...
Had to change my schedule around so will be later in the year instead.

Ramadan is in July this year so might make a difference(?).
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Old Apr 15, 14, 5:39 am
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It should be a lot quieter in July (Ramadan) but places will still be open (beaches, bars, etc). It's not as "strict" as other countries in the region when it comes to Ramadan. In fact, in the evening, cooler hours, things come back to life as people go out shopping, eating, etc.

As for the situation, well I can say that it is relatively calm at the moment. However, with the ongoing clashes in neighboring Syria, the spillover effect is very likely despite our army's best effort at trying to control the situation. I cannot honestly say what might happen next. Things tend to erupt in minutes in this part of the world, and sometimes for the stupidest possible reasons.
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Old Apr 15, 14, 11:12 pm
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Originally Posted by BEYFlyer View Post
Things tend to erupt in minutes in this part of the world, and sometimes for the stupidest possible reasons.
May you and your loved ones be safe though all of it, BEYFlyer. I loved visiting Beirut, and I'm grateful for the advice you gave me before my visit. I wish the timing had been such that we could have met in person.

BTW, I can't recall if I ever told you about a little video I put together about running the Beirut Marathon. If you're bored... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSFftiYcr-E
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Old Apr 16, 14, 3:09 am
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I saw it dhuey Thank you for being here for the Beirut Marathon and I am happy to hear you enjoyed your stay.
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Old Apr 19, 14, 10:52 am
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Keep safe. Lebanon is lovely. I went there for one week last year, had an opportunity to see Jeita, Cedars and obviously Beirut. Great lebanese food, atmosphere, friendly people, tasty arak and shisha
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Old Apr 23, 14, 6:24 am
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Happy to hear you enjoyed your stay stiwi
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Old May 25, 14, 1:43 pm
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I'm planning to visit in 10-14 days. I've tentatively booked to Hilton Habtoor Grand, but it looks like that is outside of town in a business area? Am I better off staying there or downtown, both in terms of convenience or safety? It looks like there are some pretty good deals at nice downtown properties at the moment.

I would be there for three nights and would just want to see whatever the main sights are in the city and take a day trip to Baalbek, if this is all possible these days. Any advice on where to go/not to go would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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Old Jun 2, 14, 3:51 am
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Hey jphripjah... Apologies for the late reply.

I can't really comment on the hotel but I can tell you that the area might be a bit boring for you. You say it is "outside of town" but it's really a 10 to 15 minute cab drive to the center of the city Problem is, there is nothing around for you to just go out of the hotel and walk around. Granted, there is a mall attached to the property (aptly named Le Mall ) but that's about it. Personally, I would try staying somewhere downtown (Le Grey or Four Seasons), especially since it's your first visit to the city and you want to soak up the atmosphere. Tons to see and do there and all within walking distance of those hotels.

As for tours in and outside Beirut, there are a few operators who can do group and individual tours; up to you really. The best one out there is Nakhal. Beirut has a very lively nightlife. Zaytouni Bay (across from the Four Seasons), Uruguay Street (across from Le Grey), Gemmayze (a whole street with tons of restaurants and pubs), Hamra and Makdassi streets and whole slew of other areas offer all sorts of entertainment.

Beaches are already open and are very lively during the day (obviously). If you're into that sort of thing, head to Riviera Hotel (along the beach) or St Georges Club (across from The Phoenicia Intercontinental Hotel). You will need to pay an entrance fee of about $20 to $30 and the locations are fun. Mind you I say beaches, but both properties have pools. Riviera has access to the sea (but the water is not that clean here in Beirut) while St Georges doesn't. Alternatively, you can just lounge about the hotel pool

Hope you enjoy your stay in Beirut
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Old Jun 2, 14, 7:53 am
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The historical and natural sites are year round, and the weather in the mountains should still be nice in the summer. Don't miss the Jeita Grotto, Byblos, Baalbeck, etc.
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Old Jun 2, 14, 4:06 pm
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Thanks. I changed my booking from the Hilton to the Q Hotel on Hamra. More centrally located and less than half the price. Are there any "no go" areas I should avoid wandering into?
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Old Jun 3, 14, 4:40 am
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I can't think of any "no go" areas and if there are any, you will be able to deduce that from the "don't go there" signs (barbed wires, concrete slabs, etc). And I would be careful about where I point my camera and take pictures (if you're into that sort of hobby). Don't be surprised if a security guard or an army officer/policeman walk up to you and say "no pictures". Enjoy your stay. Hamra is a lively area with a lot of places to eat and drink at on both Hamra street and Makdasi street (which runs parallel to it).
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Old Jun 3, 14, 6:31 am
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Originally Posted by jphripjah View Post
Thanks. I changed my booking from the Hilton to the Q Hotel on Hamra. More centrally located and less than half the price. Are there any "no go" areas I should avoid wandering into?
I personally don't favor the Hamra area as I feel it is pointlessly overpriced (not a big shopping area fan). Depending on your preferences and budget, the top is the Moevenpick on the Rosha, great facilities and restaurants. The Riviera is decent and has a top beach club/pool area but no actual beach. The Habtoor is supposed to be quite nice, although I have never been there. The two intercontinental properties are also supposed to be nice. Outside Beirut, the Edde Sands resort has quite a reputation.
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Old Jun 3, 14, 11:31 am
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Something I just read that I thought was really funny... Enjoy...

http://www.nogarlicnoonions.com/tour...-do-in-beirut/
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Old Jun 3, 14, 11:33 am
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And there is A LOT more to Hamra than just shopping. For someone who is visiting for only a couple of days, I think it's a great choice.
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