1. Lebanon does not have desert regions. It is the only country with such an exception in the entire Asian and African continents.
2. Lebanon is the most religiously diverse country in the Middle East, comprising 18 recognized religious sects. Only 54% of the Lebanese are Muslim and 40.5% are Christians, the highest percentage of all the Arab countries. There are also small communities of Jews, Baha’is, Buddhist, Hindus and Mormons.
3. The first mention of Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, is found in the ancient Egyptian Tell el Amarna letters dating from the 15th century BC. The city has been inhabited continuously since then. In this time, Beirut was destroyed and rebuilt 7 times, thus earning the nickname “the Phoenix”
4. Byblos or Jubayl as it’s known today, is one of the oldest continuously inhabited city in the world and the site has been continuously inhabited since 5000 BC. Its Greek name, Byblos, comes from the fact that Egyptian papyrus was imported to Greece from this city. The word “biblia” (the books) was thus coined and it is how the Bible was named so.
5. The country’s name (meaning White) is known to be the oldest in the world and has remained unchanged for over 4000 years. Occurrences of the name have been found in different texts from the library of Ebla, which date to the third millennium BC, nearly 70 times in the Hebrew Bible, and three of the twelve tablets of the Epic of Gilgamesh (perhaps as early as 2100 BC)
6. The Phoenicians were the first great civilization that emerged from Lebanon. They were great navigator and traders. They colonized the lands of North Africa all the way to the Gulf of Guinea. The Phoenicians also founded the city of Carthage, which later became independent and gave birth to the legendary Carthaginian Empire.
7. In 1920 France divides Lebanon and Syria into separate colonial enclaves, following the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, and forms the State of Greater Lebanon as one of several ethnic enclaves within Syria. At that time Lebanon was a largely Christian country (mainly Maronite territory with some Greek Orthodox enclaves) but it also included areas containing many Muslims (including Druze).