So much of beautiful Lebanon to see, but so little time. Without a doubt Lebanon is a true sight for sore eyes when it comes to its architectural beauty all the way to its undeniably breathtaking scenery. Although Lebanon is our home base we sometimes find ourselves too busy to take the time to appreciate the true beauty the country has to offer. So in order to make sure we weren’t missing all there is to see, we set aside all plans this past weekend to go up to Jounieh to see Lebanon the only way a person should see it – via Teleferique.
For those of you who aren’t quite familiar with the Teleferique, think of it as a Ferris wheel but instead of it being circular, it’s just a straight line that takes you up then back down again. The trip takes you up high above the country, giving you spectacular views both north and south of the country. With that being said, some of us had to buckle our brave pants a little extra tight for this adventure.
Photo by Tilda El Koussa
The Teleferique is one of the most visited tourists attractions in Lebanon, but to our surprise no one in our group had ever gone! Maybe because we aren’t tourists – but nonetheless it’s something we should have taken advantage of a long time ago. It first opened in 1965, back when Jounieh was a lot quieter than it is today. Back then, the cable car took you over thick green mountain-side forests, but today it’s more like flying peacefully over the hundreds of homes that have appeared in past few decades.
The Telefrique in the 1970s.
We split into two groups and each half went in their own car. For those of you who are hesitant or scared of heights (like some of us were) we ensure you that the Teleferique is safe. It has maintained an unblemished safety record throughout all its years in service. It’s a solid German-built technical structure, which is maintained on a weekly basis by their local team. As we started moving, we have to say our stomachs flipped a little – not out of fear, but out of excitement. When’s the last time you did something that made you feel like a kid again? As the cable car rose, it was like we were seeing our beloved country for the very first time! All of Jounieh was at our fingertips. From the Sanctuary of our Lady Lebanon all the way to the never-ending sea, it had to be the most beautiful scenery we’ve ever seen hands down.
Your tour can begin at two destinations, either at the Maameltein area of the city or from the sanctuary on Harissa Mountain. We started off at Maameltein and the first sight we saw was the beautiful pine forested slopes of Lady Lebanon on the Mediterranean bay of Jounieh. For a quick second we felt like we could almost touch her! (Almost.) The gentle glide up will slowly reveal beautiful vantage points of the city, sea, and outstanding landscape. As we soared up some nearly 600 meters above sea level, (yikes) we realized that we were looking at our beloved home with a set of brand new eyes.
A one-way ride takes around 9 minutes (9 breathtaking minutes!) and if you’re going from the bottom to the top, you’ll be greeted at the end with the magical sight of Harissa, complete with the serenity of the clean mountain air.
Whether it’s your first time or your 10th time, this is a trip worth taking!
For more information about the Teleferique call +961 9 936075
Featured image by Tilda El Koussa