Hidden Gems: Off-the-Beaten-Path Tours in Beirut Lebanon & Video

Hidden Gems: Off-the-Beaten-Path Tours in Beirut Lebanon

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Hidden Gems: Off-the-Beaten-Path Tours in Beirut Lebanon

Beirut, the capital city of Lebanon, is a vibrant and diverse destination that offers a plethora of attractions for travelers. While popular tourist spots like the National Museum and the Pigeon Rocks are must-visit places, there are also hidden gems in Beirut that offer unique and off-the-beaten-path experiences. In this article, we will explore ten such hidden gems in Beirut that will allow you to discover the lesser-known side of this fascinating city.

Gem 1: Sursock Museum

The Sursock Museum is a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Beirut. This modern and contemporary art museum is housed in a beautiful 19th-century mansion, showcasing a diverse collection of artworks from Lebanon and the region. With its stunning architecture and serene gardens, the Sursock Museum provides a tranquil escape from the bustling city streets.

  • Impressive Collection: The Sursock Museum boasts an impressive collection of artworks, including paintings, sculptures, and installations. Visitors can explore the museum’s permanent collection as well as temporary exhibitions that showcase the works of both established and emerging artists.
  • Architectural Marvel: The mansion itself is a work of art, with its grand staircase, intricate ceilings, and ornate details. The museum’s architecture seamlessly blends the old and the new, creating a unique and captivating space.
  • Outdoor Oasis: The Sursock Museum’s gardens are a hidden oasis in the heart of the city. Visitors can wander through the lush greenery, relax on the benches, and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere away from the bustling streets.

Beirut Lebanon

Gem 2: Bourj Hammoud

Bourj Hammoud is a vibrant and multicultural neighborhood located on the outskirts of Beirut. Known as the “Little Armenia” of Lebanon, this hidden gem offers a unique glimpse into the Armenian community’s rich culture and heritage.

  • Armenian Heritage: Bourj Hammoud is home to a large population of Armenian immigrants who settled in Lebanon after the Armenian Genocide. The neighborhood is filled with Armenian shops, bakeries, and restaurants, offering visitors a chance to experience the rich Armenian culture and sample traditional delicacies.
  • Artistic Vibes: Bourj Hammoud is also known for its vibrant street art scene. Colorful murals adorn the walls, depicting various themes and stories. Exploring the streets of Bourj Hammoud is like walking through an open-air art gallery.
  • Antiques and Crafts: The neighborhood is famous for its antique shops and craft stores. Visitors can browse through a wide range of unique items, including vintage furniture, traditional textiles, and handmade crafts.

Beirut Lebanon

Gem 3: Tawlet Souk el Tayeb

Tawlet Souk el Tayeb is a hidden culinary gem in Beirut, showcasing Lebanon’s rich culinary heritage. This unique restaurant offers a farm-to-table dining experience, where the menu changes daily based on the freshest seasonal ingredients available.

  • Farm-to-Table Concept: Tawlet Souk el Tayeb works closely with local farmers, producers, and artisans to bring the best of Lebanese cuisine to the table. The dishes are made using traditional recipes, highlighting the flavors and techniques passed down through generations.
  • Regional Delicacies: The restaurant offers a wide variety of regional delicacies from different parts of Lebanon. From the savory flavors of the mountains to the aromatic spices of the coastal regions, Tawlet Souk el Tayeb provides a culinary journey through the diverse tastes of Lebanon.
  • Cooking Workshops: Tawlet Souk el Tayeb also organizes cooking workshops where visitors can learn how to prepare traditional Lebanese dishes. These workshops provide a hands-on experience and a deeper understanding of the country’s culinary traditions.

Beirut Lebanon

Gem 4: Mar Mikhael Street Art

Mar Mikhael is a trendy neighborhood in Beirut that has become a hub for artists and creatives. The streets of Mar Mikhael are adorned with vibrant street art, adding a colorful and artistic touch to this dynamic area.

  • Open-Air Gallery: Walking through the streets of Mar Mikhael feels like exploring an open-air art gallery. Colorful murals, graffiti, and stencils can be found on every corner, showcasing the creativity and talent of local and international artists.
  • Expressive Themes: The street art in Mar Mikhael covers a wide range of themes, from social and political commentary to abstract and surrealistic designs. Each artwork tells a unique story and adds to the vibrant atmosphere of the neighborhood.
  • Artistic Venues: Mar Mikhael is also home to numerous art galleries, studios, and creative spaces. Visitors can explore these venues, attend art exhibitions, and even meet the artists behind the works.

Gem 5: Jeita Grotto

Located just outside of Beirut, the Jeita Grotto is a natural wonder that should not be missed. This underground cave complex is composed of two interconnected limestone caves, offering a mesmerizing experience for visitors.

  • Stunning Formations: The Jeita Grotto is known for its breathtaking stalactites and stalagmites, which have been formed over thousands of years. The intricate formations create a surreal and otherworldly environment that leaves visitors in awe.
  • Boat Ride: One of the highlights of the Jeita Grotto is the boat ride through the lower cave. Visitors can hop on a small boat and glide through the crystal-clear waters, marveling at the natural beauty surrounding them.
  • Upper Cave: The upper cave is accessible by foot and features a well-lit walkway that allows visitors to explore the stunning formations up close. The walkway offers breathtaking views of the underground river and the majestic chambers.

Gem 6: Raouche Rocks

The Raouche Rocks, also known as the Pigeon Rocks, are iconic natural landmarks located off the coast of Beirut. These towering rock formations rise dramatically from the sea, creating a stunning and picturesque sight.

  • Natural Wonder: The Raouche Rocks are a geological marvel, formed over millions of years through natural erosion. The rocks stand tall, with waves crashing against them, creating a spectacle that attracts both locals and tourists.
  • Boat Tours: Visitors can take boat tours around the Raouche Rocks, offering a unique perspective of these majestic formations. The boat tours also provide an opportunity to spot marine life and enjoy panoramic views of Beirut’s coastline.
  • Sunset Views: The Raouche Rocks are particularly enchanting during sunset when the sky is painted with hues of orange and pink. Watching the sun go down behind the rocks is a magical experience that should not be missed.

Gem 7: Beit Beirut

Beit Beirut, also known as the Yellow House, is a historical building that has been transformed into a museum and cultural center. This architectural gem stands as a symbol of Beirut’s tumultuous past and serves as a reminder of the city’s resilience.

  • Architectural Significance: Beit Beirut is an architectural masterpiece, showcasing a mix of Ottoman, French, and modernist influences. The building’s yellow facade and distinctive design make it a standout landmark in the city.
  • Museum Exhibitions: The museum inside Beit Beirut offers a glimpse into the city’s history, documenting the Lebanese Civil War and its impact on Beirut and its residents. The exhibitions feature photographs, artifacts, and personal stories that provide a deeper understanding of the city’s past.
  • Cultural Events: Beit Beirut also hosts cultural events, including art exhibitions, film screenings, and performances. These events contribute to the vibrant cultural scene of Beirut and provide a platform for local artists and creatives.

Gem 8: Byblos

While not technically in Beirut, a visit to Byblos is a must for anyone exploring the hidden gems of Lebanon. Located about 40 kilometers north of Beirut, Byblos is one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world and offers a fascinating journey back in time.

  • Historical Landmarks: Byblos is home to a wealth of historical landmarks, including ancient ruins, a Crusader castle, and a Roman amphitheater. Exploring these sites allows visitors to step back in time and witness the rich history of the region.
  • Charming Old Town: Byblos’ old town is a maze of narrow streets, lined with traditional Lebanese houses, boutique shops, and cozy cafes. Strolling through the old town is like stepping into a storybook, with its charming atmosphere and picturesque surroundings.
  • Delicious Cuisine: Byblos is also known for its delicious cuisine, with numerous restaurants offering traditional Lebanese dishes. From fresh seafood to mouthwatering mezze, Byblos is a paradise for food lovers.

Gem 9: AUB Neighborhood

The American University of Beirut (AUB) neighborhood is a lively and vibrant area that offers a mix of history, culture, and entertainment. Located on the outskirts of Beirut, this neighborhood is a hidden gem waiting to be explored.

  • Historical Landmarks: The AUB neighborhood is home to several historical landmarks, including the iconic AUB campus and the Archaeological Museum of the American University of Beirut. These sites provide insight into the city’s rich history and heritage.
  • Cultural Hub: The neighborhood is a cultural hub, with numerous art galleries, theaters, and music venues. Visitors can attend art exhibitions, theatrical performances, and live music concerts, immersing themselves in Beirut’s vibrant arts scene.
  • Shopping and Dining: The AUB neighborhood is also known for its trendy boutiques, stylish cafes, and gourmet restaurants. Visitors can indulge in some retail therapy, enjoy a cup of coffee in a cozy café, or savor delicious Lebanese cuisine.

Gem 10: National Museum of Beirut

The National Museum of Beirut is a hidden gem that showcases Lebanon’s rich history and cultural heritage. Located in the heart of Beirut, this museum houses an extensive collection of artifacts dating back thousands of years.

  • Historical Artifacts: The National Museum is home to a vast collection of archaeological artifacts, including statues, mosaics, jewelry, and pottery. These artifacts provide a glimpse into Lebanon’s ancient civilizations, such as the Phoenicians, Romans, and Byzantines.
  • Mosaic Collection: One of the highlights of the museum is its impressive mosaic collection. Visitors can admire intricate and beautifully preserved mosaics that depict various scenes from daily life, mythology, and religious beliefs.
  • Interactive Exhibits: The museum also features interactive exhibits that provide a hands-on learning experience. Visitors can explore virtual reconstructions of archaeological sites, play educational games, and learn about Lebanon’s cultural heritage in an engaging way.


Beirut, Lebanon, is not only a city of historical significance and natural beauty but also a city that hides numerous hidden gems waiting to be discovered. From art museums and vibrant neighborhoods to natural wonders and historical sites, Beirut offers a diverse range of off-the-beaten-path tours that will leave visitors with unforgettable memories. So, step off the well-trodden path and explore the hidden gems of Beirut for a truly unique and immersive experience.


  • Petit Palace: cityloco.net
  • Sursock Museum: sursock.museum
  • Bourj Hammoud: bourjhammoud.com
  • Tawlet Souk el Tayeb: soukeltayeb.com
  • Mar Mikhael: marmikhael.com
  • Jeita Grotto: jeitagrotto.com
  • Raouche Rocks: raoucherocks.com
  • Beit Beirut: beitbeirut.org