Jabal Moussa Biosphere Reserve

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Jabal Moussa Nature Reserve

What is there to see?
Jabal Moussa is one of only 3 biosphere reserves in Lebanon and one of 24 in the Middle East. The Jabal Moussa biosphere reserve, which overlooks the Mediterranean Sea to the west, reflects a true mosaic of ecological systems. The reserve is characterized by its incredible biodiversity: there are 215 different types of plants and 20 different types of trees, 11 of which are endemic. More than 16 different species of mammals have been discovered including the hyena, wolf, rock hyrax etc. It has also been designated a Global IBA or Important Bird Area because of all the important migratory birds passing through during autumn and spring seasons. The APJM (Association for the Protection of Jabal Moussa) has allowed this mountain to remain pristine by getting involved in its protection and rehabilitation.

A particularly interesting characteristic of Jabal Moussa biosphere reserve is its combination of a rich cultural and natural heritage. The famous legend of Adonis and Astarte haunts the deep and intriguing Adonis valley, and vestiges of the ancient Roman emperor Hadrian still remain. After reaching the top of the mountain, a surprise awaits you in the form of 3 old and beautiful houses vernacular in style, reflecting Lebanon’s building traditions.

How do I get there, and practical arrangements?
Jabal Moussa, located in the Kesrouan area, 45 km from the capital Beirut, dominates two rivers: Nahr Ibrahim from the northern side and Nahr el Dahab from the southern side. The main surrounding villages to the biosphere reserve are: Qahmez - Nahr el Dahab - Yahchouch - Ghbaleh - Ebri, these villages almost all contain trails which allow access to the mountain. There are 3 different entrances for hikes as mentioned below.

Access roads to Jabal Moussa: (click to see map on www.jabalmoussa.org)

Beirut - Zouk Mosbeh - Mayrouba – Qahmez > Baydar el shawk entrance (about 50 minutes).
Beirut - Jounieh - Ghazir - Ghineh - Nahr el dahab > Mchete entrance (about 1 hour).
Beirut - Jounieh - Nahr Ibrahim – Yahchouch > Snoubar entrance (about 75 minutes).

When is the reserve open?
All hikes are organized by appointment 24hrs in advance.

What is there to do?
Upon arrival to Jabal Moussa you will be introduced to the guides of the reserve, and will be given all necessary instructions on how to proceed inside the biosphere reserve, where you will be escorted by our guides.

Start of hike: from Baydar El Shawk-1400 meters at 9:30 am.

Level: Moderate to Difficult due to certain steep parts.

Children under 12 yrs and persons with a health condition: will have difficulties following the group, and should inform APJM in advance.

Sites to visit:

  • Old Houses
  • Hadrian rock inscriptions
  • Endemic species of flowers and trees
  • Underground cistern
  • Old well
  • The Cross

For more information about our different hiking packages, visit our website.

What is the cost?
Depending on the hiking package, can vary from 4000 LBP (for people aged 16 or less) to 15,000 LBP per person.

Are there special activities for educational visits?
There are hikes with educational activities related to biodiversity and cultural heritage of the Jabal Moussa mountain which includes trips to the Emperor Hadrian’s inscriptions and the Roman Road.

Who do I contact for more information or bookings?

Association for the Protection of Jabal Moussa (APJM)

Address: Le Portail Building, 2nd floor, suite 205, P.O. Box: 401 Jounieh, Lebanon
Tel/Fax: + 961 (0)9 643464

How can I find out more?
Please visit our website on http://www.jabalmoussa.org