South Lebanon is in Lebanon.
- 1 Sidon - capital of the south and main coastal city
- 2 Jezzine
- 3 Marjayoun
- 4 Nabatiye - larger countryside town and capital of Nabatiye Governorate
- 5 Tyre - another important coastal city
Southern Lebanon is a historian and archaeologist’s delight, with a history dating back to the Assyrians over 6,000 years ago. The region’s rolling hills sloping down to sandy Mediterranean beaches are dotted with Biblical sites, Roman and Phoenician ruins, remnants of the crusades, and the major Phoenician trading centers of Sidon and Tyre. The ancient cities of the region are like one-stop-shops to explore the ancient civilizations and history of the Mediterranean, with remnants of Egyptian, Assyrian, Phoenician, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, and Ottoman civilizations.
Like the rest of Lebanon, Arabic is the main spoken language. English and French are sometimes spoken in cities and larger towns.
Regular intercity transport buses (dubbed "Pullmans") serve as the main public transport between Beirut and Sidon and Tyre. The fare is LL1,500 (US$1) for a one-way trip from Beirut to Sidon.
The easiest way to get around outside urban areas is with a private rental car. 'Service' taxis are present, but not as pervasive or reliable. Inside urban areas, Service taxis are inexpensive ways of getting from one area to another. One service fare is LL2,000 for each passenger. Longer distances will require more than one fare per person, but the driver will indicate so before you board.
There are a few Crusader castles in Southern Lebanon - in Tibnin lie the ruins of Chateau Tibnin and in Arnoun you can find the ruins of Chateau Beaufort. There are also some smaller ruins available, but they are close to the 'Blue Line' between Israel and Lebanon and located on areas previously used by Hezbollah in their fight against the Israelis .
Climbing up the slopes of Mt. Hermon on the Lebanese side, not far from the Cheba Farms area (a highly populated Muslim Sunni area), you can find the holiest place in the Druze religion. Also in the small Christian and Druze populated villages you can find the footprint of the dragon that St. George killed and an ancient Roman temple.
South Lebanon is also bizarrely home to a risque lingerie industry that Hezbollah have failed to fully crack down on. Forbes Magazine accurately described the Syrian-made lingerie as "wire-bras with feathers, some with battery-powered bird-tweeting sounds; others that glow in the dark; panties with flickering lights--an entire subculture of outré underclothes..."
You can visit the restaurants and enjoy the scenery but you must exercise caution.
Always be careful not to draw too much attention to avoid being targeted by pickpockets. Following common sense, it is advisable to carry only the essentials during any excursions. The southern border area is patrolled and controlled by UNIFIL peacekeepers. It is generally considered wise to stay on well-travelled roads outside urban centres.
Stay alive, stay on the roads, avoid the vicinity of the 'Blue Line'. Paved roads are to be considered safe, all dirt tracks / non-paved roads are to be treated as possibly mine-infested. The fact that the locals use the non-paved roads daily is simply because they have to do so to make a living. The sad but true fact is that the areas close to the 'Blue Line' can be your last sight of Southern Lebanon because of the numerous years of fighting and sowing of all kinds of instruments of destruction across the otherwise beautiful landscape.
Avoid conversations about religion and politics for your own safety. South Lebanon is Hezbollah's main area of support, with the group winning a majority in Southern Lebanon in the 2009 parliamentary elections and several previous ones.