Lebanon

Driving Directions Lebanon

LEBANON is a small, troubled republic in the eastern Mediterranean. Throughout its long human history, it has seen the rise and fall of many civil­isations and empires, and its capital, Beirut (Beyrouth), has come to sym­bolise all the intricate troubles of the Middle East.

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A narrow coastal plain runs parallel to its 240-kilometer- or 149-mile-long Mediterranean coast and gradually rises to the spectacular Lebanon Mountains, which are snow-covered in winter. Running parallel to the Lebanon Mountains are the Anti-Lebanon Mountains, which form the border with Syria.

Google maps™ Lebanon


Between the two ranges lies the Beqaa Valley, through which flows Lebanon’s only large river, the Litani. The tiny natural forest remains other than isolated stands of trees in the mountains as deforestation has been taking place for thousands of years. The mountains provide a home for Lebanon’s remaining wildlife, which includes wolves, jackals, gazelles, and wild donkeys.

Lebanon is an agricultural country, whose central regions of production are the Beqaa Valley and the coastal plain, although erosion is a common problem in the uplands.

The main products include olives, grapes, bananas, citrus fruits, apples, cotton, tobacco, and sugar beet. The industry is small scale and manufactured goods include cement, fertilizers, and jewelry. There are oil refineries at Tripoli (Trablous) and Sidon (Saida). Lebanon’s leading economy based on commercial services such as banking, but civil war, invasion by Israel, and factional fighting have created severe problems for the economy, causing high inflation and unemployment.

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