A few hours drive north of Beirut lies a collection rugged of valleys and gorges running down from Lebanon’s high alpine range. This spectacular region, known as Wadi Tannourine, is one of the many self-contained natural jewels buried deep within Lebanon’s fissured and labyrinthine mountain interior. Historical villages, pine and cedar forests, archaeological sites and wild animals all hold sway here.
For those accustomed to the frenetic bustle and consumerist mode of life in Lebanon’s cities, Wadi Tannourine constitutes a kind of slap of face. Here a sweet Mediterranean calm swept by clean scented breezes routs the cacophony of horn-honking and the agenda-fueled activities of the urban areas further south. It’s also a place where intimations of the Middle East’s past and, perhaps, its distant restorative future also overlap.