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Social Customs & Etiquettes in Lebanon

Lebanon is a country of many different religious sects. It is recommended to wear modest clothing when visiting religious sites (mosques, churches, etc.) and when visiting rural towns and villages. However, Beirut is very much a cosmopolitan city. Clothing considered 'western' is generally acceptable, but Westerners would probably feel more comfortable in Beirut, Mount Lebanon and along the coast, which is dotted with sea-resorts. In Tripoli, especially in the old city, it is recommended that women dress conservatively. The same applies on most traditional souks in the country. The Southern Suburb of Beirut, known as Al Dahiye, in Arabic, is a Hezbollah stronghold and hence there, it would be advisable that women travellers dress modestly. In general, Lebanese are accustomed to different lifestyles and some do not take offence easily, especially with matters related to dress.

Lebanese people are known for their hospitality. Handshaking is the normal form of greeting. It is acceptable to give a small gift, particularly if invited home for a meal. As far as dress is concerned, casual dress is suitable for daytime wear, except in main towns where dress tends to be rather formal. Smarter hotels and restaurants often require guests to dress for dinner. Smoking is common and acceptable unless specified otherwise. Also, avoid any comment or discussion on politics and religion.





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