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A Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut Explore Lebanon Tours.

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I knew during my week in Beirut I wanted to do some day trips from Beirut so I could see more of Lebanon and the best places in Lebanon. I went to Byblos on my own via Uber (which is a great day trip from Beirut!) but I also wanted to go somewhere with a guide, I wanted to go hiking in Lebanon, and go somewhere that not as many people visit so I could see more and understand more of this Country. As it turns out my day trip from Beirut with Explore Lebanon Tours to Chouwen was a perfect choice!

Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut

Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut
Keep Reading for details on my Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut!

Explore Lebanon Tours

Explore Lebanon Tours is a Lebanese tour company and from what it sounds like, one of the first doing what they are doing as there doesn’t seem to be much else like this on offer in Lebanon and Beirut!

Nicola, an Aussie who visited Lebanon many years ago, fell in love with the Country, left, came back, left and then moved there set up Explore Lebanon Tours because whilst she was in Lebanon as a tourist she didn’t think the quality of tours on offer was good enough, especially compared to the prices she paid.

Nicola showed me around and took me on this trip but a 2020 update is that she went back to Oz and passed the reins onto Luka who also has a huge passion for Lebanon as well as photography, hiking, travel and nature!

Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut


We left the manic highway and headed into the Mountains of Chouwen, the road seemed to get narrower and narrower but Nicola had been up here a fair few times before so I felt totally safe and the scenery was getting better and better with more Mountains in view. This is the side I wanted to see of Lebanon without really realising it!

After an hour or so we reached a car park, it doesn’t seem that Chouwen is a popular place to visit in Lebanon so it was quite quiet, but a lovely lady came out from the cafe to tell us about the food they serve for once we’d finished our walk. We checked in, went to the bathroom and were ready to hike!

Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut

You know most hikes start with the hard section first to get the view and then end easier by going down? Well, this was the total opposite. The view was in fact at the bottom of the Valley and midway down, so we were about the start off with the easy section, see the view and then end with the walk back up!

The hike down took us about 40 minutes, it was slippy in some parts and took some concentration but it was fine and by taking our time and being careful we managed it with no problems. Halfway down we came upon the platform where I had first seen Nicola’s photo on Explore Lebanon Tours Instagram page, the view is epic!!

We took a few photos and carried on.

Before I knew it we were at the bottom of the Valley right by the Nahr Ibrahim River in Chouwen and I was surprised how quick the hike down was!

The River is just as stunning from ground level as it is from up high and the rushing sound of the water along with the sound of the leaves in the wind and no other sound, and no the people made it so so peaceful. The kind of peace that is needed after being in the busy City of Beirut for a few days.

We took some photos here, sat by the water eating an apple and rehydrating before starting the climb back up!

Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut

We timed ourselves and it took 40 minutes to get back up and it actually wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. My calves were burning for sure and I got a sweat on but despite it being 30c, the trees gave us some well-needed shade and there was a cool breeze, it made me understand when Nicola told me that a lot of people have a home in the City and in the Mountains in Lebanon, it was a lot cooler here than by the Coast!

It also made me understand why Hiking in Lebanon and Outdoor Activities in Lebanon are becoming more popular. Chouwen is not even known by a lot of Lebanese people so the fact that I got to do a hike in Lebanon in such a quiet, fairly untouched place was so special and was a complete highlight of my time in Lebanon.

Imagine how many other spots must be fairly undiscovered in Lebanon!

By the time we got back to the car it was well and truly lunch time so we went back to the lady who introduced herself when we arrived and what a good life decision that was!

Nicola ordered and I fully trusted her to know what Lebanese Foods to get for us, she chose well and we enjoyed our extremely fresh lunch with views over the Mountains, a friendly host and 4 gorgeous ginger kittens! The lunch alone was such an authentic, unique experience that I feel so lucky to have had.

Day Trip to Chouwen from Beirut

What I love about Nicola and her approach to her tours is that she always wants to show her guests something a bit different and tailor-make day tours in Lebanon to suit them.

There are lots of places to visit in Lebanon and lots of tours from Beirut. Some of the popular day tours from Beirut are to Byblos, Jeita Grotto and to the Cedars but she also includes some extra places like Monasteries, and Beach Clubs in the Summer for those boiling hot afternoons!

I can’t recommend Explore Lebanon Tours enough, I’m so pleased I came across their website and Instagram page. If you fancy going hiking in Lebanon, have a look into the tour I did and the range of day tours from Beirut that she offers here, including some tours that are specific for Summer too!

Travel Insurance for Lebanon. Do you still need to purchase it? I used World Nomads as it is designed by travellers, for travellers and it covers you in all sorts of Countries and Activities!

I received a discount on the full day trip price in exchange for writing this post about my day with Explore Lebanon Tours but all thoughts and opinions are my own.