Niha (Chouf)

Place: Niha

Distance from Beirut: 65 km

Located between 1050 m and 1850 m above sea level, at 65 km from Beirut, Niha has been inhabited across the times of the Romans, the Crusaders, the Mamlouks, and the Ottomans. The most famous monument in Niha is the cave fortress (Cave of Tyron). This cave was fortified by the Crusaders, the Arabs, and the Mamluks in order to control the vital road linking Saïda to the Beqaa Valley.

The shrine of Nabi Ayoub, or Job, is the second most famous monument in Niha. The shrine is built on a summit overlooking the village, where the prophet Job is believed to be buried. Pilgrims frequently visit this site searching for its benediction. Niha is rich in old springs such as Ain al-Qataa, Nabeh Niha, and the very old Ain al-Halqoum.

However one should not forget the other attractions that forged the celebrity of the village: its old, traditional houses, its two ancient churches in Niha (Saint Joseph and Saint Georges), as well as two old bridges (El Jisr el Tahtani and Jisr Tariq el Nahr) and an old water mill. Niha now has a well-run private guesthouse and an information center run by the Shouf Biosphere Reserve.

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