Beirut is Better than Barcelona

Don’t take my word for it (especially since I’ve yet to visit Barcelona), but take the word of the readers of the upscale travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler, whose votes placed Beirut 20th in the top 25 cities of the world – tying with Seville, and placing ahead of Paris, Venice and Barcelona.

Wow.  As happy as I am living in Beirut, I have to admit I was pretty surprised by the ranking.

My parents are currently visiting, and we are sightseeing every day while the kids are at school. Last week at the gorgeous National Museum in Beirut we saw just one group of foreign tourists (a busload of Koreans) in the two hours we were there.

We had the National Museum practically to ourselves last week.

The National Museum sees more school groups than tourists, and was nearly empty during our visit.

While sightseeing downtown on Monday, there was another obvious foreign tourist that we kept bumping into at each mosque and church we stepped into. Him and the three of us.  Hardly the crowds that swarm Paris or Venice or Barcelona.

Nary a tourist in sight at downtown's Plaza Nejmeh.

Nary a tourist in sight at downtown’s Plaza Nejmeh.

Where are these readers that voted Beirut so highly?

Beirut has a lot to offer, but don’t take my word for it. And maybe you shouldn’t take the word of Conde Nast Traveler readers either. Come and check it out, and you’ll have the place all to yourself to enjoy.


One thought on “Beirut is Better than Barcelona

  1. Talal says:

    Well.. Beirut is a nice city for tourists! but it is not the same when living there with the hundred of problems 😉 but for my opinion -and being a Lebanese- I would not change Barcelona for Beirut. Barcelona is the city where I lived for long time and I adore. and by the way, I will be there next week 😉 Anyway, it is wonderful to go on shifting between both cities!

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