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If you have plenty of time on your hands, the recently formed 440km Lebanon Mountain Trail, the Middle East’s most far-reaching long distance mountain trekking route, also passes Mzaar’s front door. Extending from the village of Al-Qbaiyat in the north of the country to the village of Marjaayoun in the south, it passes around 75 small settlements and is peppered with Roman ruins and temples that few are intrepid enough to see.

Mzaar itself centres on the Intercontinental Mzaar Mountain Resort and Spa, styled on a traditional Swiss wooden chalet, with its own cinema, bowling alley, spa, three restaurants and an expansive outdoor terrace. Clubbers and partygoers regularly make the switch from the downtown clubs of Beirut to check out the nightlife at altitude and eat copious amounts of mountain fondue, washed down with the local Almaza beer and arak. On the hotel’s outside terrace or at the highly recommended Frost pub in the centre of Mzaar village, DJs spin records and après skiers eat fresh mezze and share fruit-scented sheeshas and hookah pipes. You don’t get that in Austria or Switzerland, do you?

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