Your guide to being an expatriate in Lebanon

Caffeinate Your Lebanon Expat Journey: Find Essential Info and Connect with Expatriates Today!

Tucked between the Mediterranean Sea and the snowy peaks of Mount Lebanon, Lebanon is a small country with big personality. Blending modernity and tradition, Lebanon is a land of contrasts. Here, you'll find ancient ruins nestled alongside gleaming skyscrapers, golden beaches, and ancient cedar forests. Lebanon is a former French mandate, so the French influence is strong. Learn about the Lebanese people, rich history, cuisine, and lifestyle in our guide for expats.


Expat destinations in Lebanon

Demographics of Lebanon:

Ethnic groups

Lebanese people are predominantly Arab, with converts from neighboring countries and minorities of Armenians, Assyrians, and Kurds.


Arabic is the official language, with French and English widely used as second languages.

Religion Overview

Lebanon lies at the crossroads of several religions. The majority of Lebanese are Muslim, primarily Sunni or Shia, with Christianity serving as the other main religion. Major religions include Islamic Sunni, Islamic Shia, Christian (Maronite, Eastern Orthodox, Melkite Greek Catholic, Armenian Orthodox, Armenian Catholic, Armenian Apostolic, Greek Catholic, Syriac Catholic, Assyrian Nestorian, Roman Catholic), Druze, and Baha'i.

Major Religions


Lebanon's climate is Mediterranean, with wet, mild winters and hot, dry summers.

Economy Overview

Lebanon's economy is heavily reliant on services, with manufacturing and agriculture also contributing significantly. Tourism is vital to the Lebanese economy. The majority of the population lives in urban areas around Beirut and Tripoli.

Key Industries

  • Tourism
  • Banking
  • Industries
  • Commercial Services
  • Marketing
  • Media and Communication
  • Trade
  • Infrastructure

Major Companies

  • Orient Paper Company
  • Four Seasons Bank
  • Kit USB Flash Drives, USB Flash Drives, Pen Drives
  • Burj Cavo Burj

Culture and Language Overview

Lebanon is a center of Arab culture, with a rich history dating back to ancient times. Lebanese culture has been shaped by numerous empires, from the Phoenicians and Romans to the Ottomans and French. Traditional food, fashion, music, and dance all feature prominently in Lebanese life, alongside a growing entertainment industry. Lebanese culture is multifaceted and diverse.

Cultural Highlights

  • Beiteddine Festival (July – August) – An annual celebration of music, dance, and culture in a historic fortress.
  • Lebanese Wine – Lebanese wines have attracted international acclaim, with many vineyards offering cellar tours and tastings.
  • Lebanese Food – Lebanese sandwiches (manakish), grilled meats (shawarma), and seafood (kibbeh) are all must-tries, as is sweet Lebanese dessert (maahlabiya).
  • Lebanese Fashion – Lebanon's fashion industry is one of the most exciting in the Middle East, with many designers showing at international catwalks.
  • Lebanese Dance – Lebanon has a rich tradition of dance, from the energetic 'Dabkeh' featuring men in traditional dress, to the softer 'Rai,' featuring women with canes and veils.

Geography and Landmarks Overview

Lebanon encompasses rugged mountains, pine forests, golden beaches, and lush valleys, all rolled into a compact 10,400 square kilometers. The Lebanese Government has taken great strides to preserve Lebanon's natural wonders, creating national parks to protect its endangered fauna and flora.

Notable Landmarks

  • The Cedars – A forested sanctuary near Mount Lebanon's highest peak (2,287 meters).
  • Byblos – An ancient Phoenician city with a UNESCO World Heritage Site-listed ancient harbor.
  • Tannourine Cedar Forest – This vast forest covers over 4,000 hectares in the Lebanese mountains.
  • Jeita Grottoes – A network of interlinked caves near Beiteddine, where visitors can discover the natural grottos.
  • Chewich-Kayfoun – A small, enchanting village cradled by Mount Keserwane and the Nahr el-Kabir river.

National Holidays

  • New Year's Day (January 1)
  • Orthodox Christmas Day (January 7)
  • Ash Wednesday (February/March)
  • Great Friday (March/April)
  • Easter Sunday (March/April)
  • Eid al-Fitr (June/July)
  • Eid al-Adha (July/August)
  • Assumption of the Virgin Mary (August 15)
  • Independence Day (November 22)
  • Feast of the Holy Cross (September 14)

Political Stability

Lebanon has experienced political turbulence in recent decades, undergoing a series of civil wars and sectarian conflicts that have left significant scars. The government's stability has fluctuated over time, with ongoing tensions between various religious and political factions defining the country's political landscape.

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