25th September  to  2nd October 2020 | Lebanon

Lebanon: Mountain Trail to the Black Peak

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LEBANON: MOUNTAIN TRAIL TO THE BLACK PEAK

Friday 25th October - Friday 2nd October 2020

Multi-activity – 7 days (5 working days)

Our 2020 multi-activity adventure! Be prepared to kayak, hike, bike, via Ferrata, cave and swim your way through this fascinating country. A rewarding itinerary which includes historical cultural stops along the way such as World Heritage UNESCO monasteries as well as summiting the highest mountain: Qornet As Sawda (3088m).

TRAINING: We run a variety of free, weekly training sessions that we encourage you to join before the challenge. Registration for this challenge grants you membership to Gulf for Good's soulFIT fitness community. Click here to read more about soulFIT.

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COSTS: TBC

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This event is under process for approval by the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department.

CHALLENGE ITINERARY

  

Day 1 – Friday 25th September 2020 – Arrival in Beirut

We arrive in the beautiful seaside city of Beirut, a thriving and busy city that has no shortage of history and contemporary character. The city still exhumes a rich history that saw the Canaanites, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Ottomans, and French come through. Walking the city, you can still sense this rich history that is Beirut. 

We transfer to our hotel before we explore part of the city and sample some of the delicious foods that Lebanon offers for our first dinner this evening.  

Overnight hotel 

 

Day 2 – Saturday 26th September 2020 – River Rafting/Kayaking and Beaufort Castle 

After breakfast, we transfer from Beirut along the coast to the South towards the ancient city of Sidon (Saida) which dates back to 5,000BC, before we veer off towards the rolling hills and valleys of southern Lebanon towards the Litani River.

At the kayaking centre situated on the Litani, we are transferred upstream where we enjoy kayaking and swimming downstream in the river, stopping at several intervals to take in the surrounding scenery which includes the view of the majestic Beaufort Castle, a mountain with a rocky outcrop that has been the scene of many takeovers over many centuries.

We enjoy lunch by the river before we head back towards Beirut, with a stopover at the Beaufort Castle if time permits.

We then head to Beirut through Jezzine, a town popular for its production of handmade, traditional cutlery and daggers with decorative inlays and artisanal wine.

After arriving back at our hotel, we enjoy a restaurant dinner or Hamra Street food tour, sampling some of Lebanon’s street food scenery.

Overnight hotel

 

Day 3 – Sunday 27th September 2020 – Qadicha and The Cedars

We check-out and transfer to the North and head to Qadisha Valley, a World Heritage site that is considered to be a holy valley and is the home to the famed Cedars of Lebanon.

We visit the Qozhaya monastery and museum, before we start our hike of the Lebanon Mountain Trail (LMT 7) from Qozhaya – Fraidis – Qannoubine – Mar Lichaa where we climb 800m and descend 200m walking through the wonderful scenery of the mountains of Lebanon. 

The main highlights include monasteries, chapels and hermitages cut into the rock face of the valley. 

We then proceed to visit the Cedars grove, which is said to consist of some of the oldest trees in the World, before checking-in to a nearby hotel, where we rest and have a dinner.

Overnight hotel

 

Day 4 – Monday 28th September 2020 – Qornet Hike, Qornet as‐Saouda

Today we transfer to Ouyoun pass and commence our hike to Lebanons Highest peak Qornet As-Souda (The Black Peak) to 3,088m ASL, gaining and descending 800m respectively. We sample some of the country’s best mountain scenery, with spectacular views at the summit and a picnic lunch before heading back down. 

This is a long day where we will hike 20km.

Overnight hotel

 

Day 5 – Tuesday 29th September 2020 – Mountain biking to Aqoura

A short transfer to Ainata pass, where we start our mountain biking through the hills to Aqoura on dirt roads. We will gain 300m, but descent almost 1,300m, followed by a small hike.

We will stay overnight in a nun’s convent in Aqoura

 

Day 6 – Wednesday 30th September 2020 – Via Ferrata and Caving

A short transfer to Mar Semaan chapel where start our hiking in the Aqoura cliffs giving wonderful views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. This hike also gives the option of a via-ferrata hike in the cliffs above the Roueiss Grotto. The challenge then takes us town towards the Grotto where our caving experience begins in the second largest horizontal grotto in Lebanon.

The caving experience is accessible by all, and has varying levels of difficulty depending on the group capabilities.  We walk through caves and lakes millions of years old and hear the about the fable of Adonis and Aphrodite, where the red mud lining inside the cave is

said to symbolize the blood of Adonis all the while listening to the orchestra of water drops in the cave system.

We then transfer down to the sea to Byblos (Jbeil), the oldest continually occupied city in the world, with a rich and colourful history, where we check-in and enjoy a celebratory and take in the sights and sounds of this wonderful town.

Note: If the group size exceeds 20, we will split the group into 2 groups doing caving morning / via ferrata afternoon and via ferrata morning / caving afternoon.

Overnight hotel

 

Day 7 – Thursday 1st October 2020 – Byblos, charity and Jeita visits

Today we will do a visit and tour of the Byblos castle before transferring to Jeita (time permitting), the country’s largest and most popular grotto close to Beirut.

We then visit our wonderful charity in Bhersaf and spending time with the children.

After the charity visit we will transfer to the airport for our onward departure.

 

Notes: This itinerary may change due to changes outside our control. We will endeavour to keep to the planned itinerary, but cannot be held responsible for last changes that might occur. In all such circumstances, the group leader will have the final say.

 

 

 

SOS Children's Villages Lebanon

SOS Children's Villages is an international, non-governmental, social development organisation that provides care, education, and health services to children who have lost, or who are at risk of losing, parental care. They help vulnerable families care for their children and they work to prevent the breakdown of parental care. When children can no longer live with their own families, they provide quality alternative care in SOS families.

This challenge will support the SOS Children's Village located in Sferai village, Lebanon to renovate the existing water treatment plant along with other water saving changes to the existing toilets and faucets to make the entire village more sustainable. Our goal is to raise $49,610, impacting children.

Please note that this challenge will support the priority needs of SOS Children's Villages at the completion of the challenge, which may vary from the above. We promise to keep you updated with any changes.

http://www.sos.org.lb/

If you have what it takes then download the booking form, print it off and send the signed and completed form with a cheque or draft for the required deposit to:

Gulf for Good

P.O. Box 506006
Dubai
United Arab Emirates.

Tel:+971 4 3680222
Email: