• THE TANNOURINE RESERVE

As the season of blossoming nature arrives, the long-awaited escapades into the beautiful outdoors of Lebanon are finally back. This year, I’ve welcomed Spring with a beautiful walk in the Cedar Reserve of Tannourine, North Lebanon.

For those unfamiliar with this reserve, it is interesting to know that it is the biggest cedar forest in Lebanon in terms of tree density. The reserve stretches over 750 hectares and counts around 70,000 ancient cedar trees (the oldest of which was found to be 750 years old) as well as a variety of other tree species.

Tannourine’s reserve offers 5 hiking trails for now, each of different difficulty level and altitude. The moderate trail we hiked today was a 4-hour beautiful walk (1,700m altitude) offering stunning mountainous landscapes.

— How to get there from Beirut: take the highway to Jbeil, then head to Annaya past Ehmej and Laqlouq, and follow the signs to Tannourine. (45 min from Jbeil)

— Tips: I recommend doing the hike with a small group of friends and getting lost in this beautiful reserve! (you won’t completely get lost as there are blue signs on the stones that will help you find your way back)

  • NAHR EL JOZ

I love Batroun obviously, but can you blame me? This beautiful town in the North of Lebanon is where you want to spend every weekend, whether lying on its shore or lost somewhere in its mountains.

This weekend, my nature escape was to Nahr el Joz (walnut river) 11km up from the city of Batroun. Originating from two springs above Tannourine, the 30km long river lined with walnut trees flows its way into the sea, offering along the way magical scenery and beautiful old water mills and bridges.

The hike along the banks of the river is simply wonderful in Spring, and here’s why:

    • Nature is shining in all its yellow, pink, purple and green colors, making the walk a true delight.
    • The water flows so vigorously at this time of the year that the sound it makes is overwhelming. Take the time to pause during your hike, close your eyes and enjoy the beautiful relaxing sound of nature.
    • The weather is just perfect, not too cold, not too hot. Exactly what you need to enjoy a refreshing morning walk!

— How to get there from Beirut: take the road from Batroun upwards, passing by Kfarhalda and Beit Chlela. (don’t forget to stop on the way to see the waterfalls of Kfarhalda!)

— Tips: he area offers so much to see like the beautiful town of Douma that’s very close to the river and where you can unwind after your hike and grab a bite somewhere.