BY: Ranwa Imad (LMTA)
A country that has been through so much, still holds so many treasures we’ve been sleeping on.
Lebanon’s journey through time was made possible through the Lebanon Mountain Trail Association (LMTA), as they were able to pass on the tales of the earth by working on Geotrails that are beyond just hiking trails.
What are Geotrails?
Geotrails transport each hiker and nature enthusiasts through epochs of time, in a way that helps them understand the processes that formed the Lebanese landscape.
At the heart of this iniative, lies the beauty of scientific discoveries made along the way of Geodiversity from fossils, deposition, geological structures, hydrogeology (water and springs), karst landscapes and caves to volcanism and many more.
The areas of Geosites are a working example of climate changes, tectonic evolution and the related changes in the history of life at the surface of the Earth. “Understanding the geology of our mountains is changing the whole experience of hiking,” according to Omar Sakr, Executive Director at LMTA. Which is why having Geotourism in our land is a must and should be evolved through the Geotrails for us to create touristic educational activities.
Most importantly, what is so outstanding about these Geotrails?
These Geotrails celebrate:
-Lebanon’s rich heritage
-The geological aspect of our lands
-The natural and cultural dimensions
Indeed, Lebanon’s geological history spans millions of years and showcases a wide array of captivating phenomena. In line with their commitment to sustainable tourism (for the time being in Jbeil Geotrails), LMTA has ensured that these trails are accessible to everyone, to both friends seeking a weekend escape and the explorers craving a little challenge while growing the educational aspect along their hike.
What is our next plan?
LMTA all geared up, is all set and ready to launch the New Geotrails in Akkar this coming spring! As the excitement reaches its peaks for the awaited new thematic trail, it’s clear that, this flame of exploration evoked by LMTA will expand the legacy in fueling the exploration, and guiding the hikers into discovering Lebanon’s natural treasures.
With a mission in promoting Lebanon’s natural and cultural heritage through the development and maintenance of the Lebanon Mountain Trail (LMT). The Lebanon Mountain Trail Association (LMTA) will strive in creating a sustainable and interconnected trail across Lebanon’s mountain ranges and its communities.
As each new trail is blazed, Lebanon’s geological wonders are brought to the forefront and is ready to inspire and show the beauty lying in our homeland.
Many thanks to the department of earth and sciences at the American University of Beirut (AUB) most importantly Dr Joanna Doumar and her team, who were helping us along this journey in the many discoveries and the process of implementing such thematic trails in Lebanon. These trails were made possible through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Ministry of Environment of Lebanon with the generous funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF).
Wanting to learn more about Jbeil Geotrails check out this link: https://www.lebanontrail.org/geotrails.pdf
Or pass by the LMTA office for the brochures to check out the maps of the trail.