This pretty village, with its laid-back atmosphere, wonderfully quaint architecture and good accommodation options, is the obvious base from which to explore the valley. Here, among the narrow streets of cottages with their colourful wooden window shutters and tiny pavement flower gardens, life slows down to a snail’s pace. Old men gather outside the village café to watch the world go by, farmers chug down the middle of the road on beaten-up tractors and elderly women sit for hours in front of their houses gossiping.
This is Lebanese mountain life at its prettiest and it won’t be long before you have fallen under its spell. Walks in the area lead to the limestone caverns of the Qadisha Grotto and to isolated Maronite grottoes, hermitages, chapels and monasteries.