"Beirut" Beirut by iwys
Beirut Travel Guide: 924 reviews and 1,814 photos
The people of Beirut are some of the most resilient in the world. They have re-built their war-torn city time and time again. When I was there in the summer of 2006, the city had just been bombed by the Israelis. There were bomb craters in main roads, water flowing from fractured water mains and apartment blocks reduced to piles of rubble. Work was still taking place to repair the damage inflicted by the Civil War. Yet, in spite of all that, Beirut still struck me as a remarkably elegant city.
Beirut is a religiously diverse city, but the different groups often seem to have an uneasy peace, separated by a series of bitter conflicts. The result is that the city is divided, along religious lines, into three sectors: The Christians in the East, the Sunnis in the West and the Shias in the South of the city. At times they have all met in the city centre and fought it out.
In the 12th and 13th centuries it was fought over by the Christian Crusaders and the Muslim Arabs. More bitter fighting between the two religious groups erupted in the nineteenth century. But, the last big civil war, between the Christians and Muslims lasted from 1975 until 1990. Beirutis were temporarily united against the Israelis during the war of 2006, but soon after the debris had been cleared, internal divisions and violent street protests began to flare up again.
I didn't stay at the Hotel Riviera, but it looked really nice and has an excellent location at the end of the Corniche... more travel advice
BCD, Beirut Central District is the downtown area of Beirut, centred on Place d'Etoile. The Solidere project has done a... more travel advice
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