The idea of driving more than an hour to see a waterfall may seem absurd to many, but Baatara Gorge in Lebanon is worth it. That day we went from Via Mina Hotel in Tripoli to the Cedars of God. Then we drove to the waterfall next to the town of Balaa between Laklouk and Tannourine.
The landscape is very picturesque on the road between the mountains. You will pass through small towns that are ideal for stopping and taking photos.
Keep in mind that Lebanon is not a very tourist country and this area has little infrastructure. It’s hard to find places to eat. Trip Advisor has few recommendations and some of the sites we found did not seem appropriate.
As we went in November, it was almost winter. We stopped to buy snacks in a store, since the days were short and we had little time to explore.
Like Jordan and Israel, you can find Bedouins in this area. You see them on the sides of the road taking care of their sheep mounted on a donkey.
The Baatara Gorge waterfall is from the Jurassic era
In 1952 the French bio-speleologist Henri Coiffait discovered this impressive natural wonder. In the 1980s the waterfall and the drain were traced. Then in 1999 it was classified as a nature reserve.
The waterfall is submerged at 255 meters (837 feet) in a cave. In 1988 an experiment was carried out using fluorescent dye that showed that water flowed to the Dalleh spring in the nearby town of Mgharet al-Ghaouaghir.
Visit the Cave of the Three Bridges
Baatara Gorge is also known as the Cave of the Three Bridges. When you are go you will understand the meaning of this nickname, since the waterfall falls into a cave behind three natural bridges.
The best months to go are in March and April, which is spring in Lebanon. The snow melts and causes the waterfall to fill completely. In November it rains and that’s why there was water. It can be pretty to see it without water, but it’s not the same.
You can go in a zipline canopy rope with capacity for two people or in a basket, like in ski resorts.
Both services have cost and can be purchased each way or round trip. We decided to go in the basket and we quickly reached the bottom.
You must be careful when exploring Baatara Gorge. I had hiking shoes and that helped, but there are places that are slippery. Yellow ribbons will informally tell you where it is safe to go.
The best time to go is in the afternoon if you want to take pictures. In the morning, the waterfall appears against the sun and it is very difficult to take pictures.