If you came to this site, someone probably told you Lebanon is not safe. That couldn't be further from the truth! Right now Lebanon is one of the most stable, welcoming and adventurous places to visit in the whole Middle East/Mediterranean region for foreigners. Don't miss it because you don't have all the facts and fear the unknown!
I am a foreigner. I have lived here almost two years, and have seen almost every part of this country. I feel safer here than walking the streets of Paris or downtown Chicago (for sure!) and you will too once you get over the fear of the unknown.
I've had enough friends ask this very question so I decided to make this website to help answer it!
Most Westerners I meet think that Lebanon is in total lawlessness like the Wild West, with murders, robberies and rapes happening all the time at a high rate. It's actually the opposite. Statistically speaking, you are safer in Lebanon than the USA. Really! The homicide rate for the whole country was recorded as only 2.2 in 2010. The assault rate was 10. For America, it was 4.5 in 2013 and an assault rate of 241! That means you are twice as likely to be murdered in the USA, and hundreds times more likely to be assaulted! But who is afraid to visit the USA? Probably very few people. See the facts on USA crime rates below:
When people ask me about Lebanon, it seems they have the idea they will be kidnapped and paraded on CNN the minute they step off the plane! That's absolutely not true, and the threat of terrorism in Lebanon is lower than several other countries people would have no problem visiting. Lebanon has not had any of the same "spectacular" terrorist attacks targeting random people like France, England and the USA in the years I've been here. There is some sectarian-related violence classified as terrorism. And several foiled plots by ISIS - but the Lebanese govt actually does a GREAT job finding these guys out in time to stop it. If you know the places that can be higher-risk to avoid - or be cautious on when you go visit - you can heavily reduce any risk.
The GTI (Global Terrorism Index) for Lebanon is 6.09 which is higher than the USA (which is 4.86) and the UK (which is 5.08) but is lower than other popular tourist destinations like Thailand (which is 6.708), China (which is 6.108), Philippines (which is 7.098) and India (which is 7.484). You would probably NOT be afraid to visit those other places, so why would you think Lebanon is not safe to visit?
Absolutely! The Lebanese have had a special - and very positive - relationship with America for over 100 years. The American University of Beirut (AUB) is one of the premier universities in the Middle East and well-respected as a US-backed institution. There are over 500,000 Lebanese living in the USA, and millions more in South America and Europe.
You could not feel more welcomed here as a foreigner, whether American, European or Asian. While there may be certain groups not too fond of Western government policies in the region - like the US/UK support for Israel for example - they do not hold that against the average visiting American or European. If anything they will be happy to meet you and share "their side" of the story so you can see things from a different perspective than you would find in Western news media. You will find a warm, hospitable welcome by all classes of Lebanese when you arrive, and should have nothing to fear.
If you want to see some of the best historical sites in the Middle East, enjoy one of the most active cities - Beirut - in the Mediterranean, and grab some of the most amazing hummus, shawarma, kitbie in the world, you'll want to spend some time in Lebanon!
Here are a few of the things worth seeing in Lebanon. You can find more posts below that some Lebanese I know put together for this site: