The earliest evidence of civilization in Lebanon dates back more than seven thousand years, predating recorded history. Lebanon was the home of the Phoenicians, a maritime culture that flourished for over a thousand years (c. 1550–539 BC). In 64 BC, the region came under the rule of the Roman Empire, and eventually became one of the Empire's leading centers of Christianity. In the Mount Lebanon range a monastic tradition known as the Maronite Church was established. As the Arab Muslims conquered the region, the Maronites held onto their religion and identity. However, a new religious group, the Druze, established themselves in Mount Lebanon as well, a religious divide that would last for centuries. During the Crusades, the Maronites re-established contact with the Roman Catholic Church and asserted their communion with Rome. The ties they established with the Latins have influenced the region into the modern era.
Take a tour around Beirut and have a 2-hour cooking class after. This will be a treat for you - a truly Lebanese day!
Drive North of Beirut to the Dog River where history's great conquerors left carved on the cliffs 19 inscriptions in memory of their glory.
Early morning, you will depart for Baalbeck. On the way you will notice the magnificent Bekaa plain. Once in Baalbeck, you will see the most colossal monuments ever to be found from the Roman period, the Temple of Jupiter with its sumptuous columns, the richly decorated Temple of Bacchus and the original pentagonal Temple of Venus. Take lunch, and then continue the tour to Ksara winery for some delightful Lebanese wine tasting. Then visit Anjar, the unique fortified city in Lebanon built as early as the 8th century by the Ommeyad Caliph of Damascus. It is known to be the "Palace of the Desert."