December 15, 2017

The best ski resorts in the Middle East

If you are surprised you can ski in the Middle East then you are not alone! Many are not aware that Lebanon is the place to head too which offers the best slopes in the region along with a luxury hotel you can stay at in Beirut. There are six resorts which are close and just a couple of hours drive from Beirut, the locals love to ski here and it’s a popular sport during the ski season with the slopes buzzing with locals and tourists. Each resort has something different to offer it all depends on what you are looking for in a ski resort.

Mzaar

This is Lebanon’s most famous ski resort and is close to the villages of Faraya and Kfardebian, it’s a cosmopolitan resort with more than 80km of slopes at an altitude of 2465m. The slopes are challenging and ideal for advanced skiers, however, there are plenty of gentle slopes for beginners and some difficult for intermediate skiers.

The Faqra Club

Is a private ski club which was founded in 1974 and was one of the first private ski clubs to be set up in Lebanon. There is a wide variety of slopes for all levels of skiers so it is suitable for everyone, facilities at this ski club are a heated pool, tennis courts, luxurious chalets where you can stay and many other amenities are available.

The Cedars Ski Resort

This ski resort has been around for a very long time and has been well established since the early 1920s. It’s ideal for beginners with gentle slopes and a good lift system. It is also home to some of Lebanon’s best cross-country skiing so intermediate and advanced skiers won’t be disappointed. History surrounds this resort and the Gibran Museum (Gibran was a famous Lebanese writer) is also here along with excellent après ski facilities.

Laklouk

Is the jewel in the crown and its renowned for being the most beautiful ski resort in the Middle East, it is set amongst majestic mountains with picturesque vistas it also offers wonderful alpine and cross-country skiing. This naturally stunning area is close to the Afqa Cave (there is a waterfall in the cave) and Balaa Abyss which is a must on your to-do list and both have been described as awe-inspiring! If you want natural beautiful and unique surroundings in the Middle East this is the resort for you.

Zaarour

This is the smallest ski resort in Lebanon and it is also the closest to Beirut. Fabulous views of the Sannine Mountain with 16km of great slopes and a 1km long cross country track for the more advanced or adventurous skiers. There is a wide range of activities on offer including fat biking, snowboarding and snow tubing and tobogganing to name just a few.

Qanat Bakish

The village here is one of the best preserved Lebanese towns and the quality of its snow is second to none. The area is vast with 7km of slopes and 5 lifts the altitude reaches 2000m and skiers love the freedom this resort offers and is classed as a hidden gem.

In Lebanon you can literally have the best of both worlds, skiing by day and then take a stroll along the waterfront at the Beirut Marina after dinner at one of the many gourmet restaurants. Who would have thought that you could have so many options of top-class ski resorts in the Middle East? Maybe it’s time to set a new trend and why not be the first of your friends to try skiing in the Lebanon sounds good to me!