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Lebanon - Hasbaya Wine

 

 
 

Hasbaya Information

The Wadi El Taym is a long fertile valley running parallel to the western foot of Mount Hermon. Watered by the Hasbani river, the low hills of Wadi El Taym are covered with rows of silver-green olive trees, its most important source of income. Villagers also produce honey, grapes, figs, prickly pears, pine nuts and other fruit.

Mount Hermon, 2745 meters high, is a unifying presence throughout the Wadi El Taym. This imposing mountain held great religious significance for the Canaanites and Phoenicians, who called it the seat of the All High. The Romans, recognizing it as a holy site, built many temples on its slopes. The Old Testament refers to it as “Baal – Hermon,” while in the New Testament the mountain is the site of the transfiguration of Jesus.

A Historical Site

Hasbaya, the capital of the Wadi El Taym, is an attractive town full of history. A good deal of this history transpired at the huge citadel that is today Hasbaya’s chief claim to fame. Owned by the Chehab emirs, the citadel forms the major part of a Chehabi compound – a group of buildings surrounding an unpaved central square 150 meters long and 100 meters wide. Several medieval houses and a mosque make up the rest of the compound, which covers a total of 20,000 square meter. The citadel is situated on a hill overlooking a river which encircles it from the north. A site steeped in mystery, the citadel is so old its origins are uncertain and so big that even today no one is sure how many rooms it contains. The known history of the structure begins with the Crusaders, but it may go back even earlier to an Arab fortification or a Roman building. Won by the Chehabs from the Crusaders in 1170, the fortress was rebuild by its new owners.

Since then it has been burned many times in battle and was often the scene of bloody conflict. Most recently, it was struck by rockets during the Israeli occupation of South Lebanon. Amazingly, for almost all of the eight centuries since it fell to the Chehabs, the citadel has been occupied by members of the same family. Today actual ownership is shared by some fifty branches of the family, some of whom live there permanently.

Hasbaya Profile

Hasbaya Information

 

 
 

 

Information From the Ministry of Tourism

Lebanese Ministry of Tourism

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