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(Cable Car, Views and Churches 26 km)

Harissa can be reached from Jounieh by cable car, a nine-minute ride that takes you up 600 meters from the coast to the precipitous mountain top. A less breathtaking approach is by road from Jounieh. Near the cable car terminus is a church and a spectacular cathedral begun in 1970, as well as the famous landmark Statue of the Virgin Mary erected in 1908. Inside the base of the statue is a chapel while outside a spiral staircase leads to the top.

Within walking distance is the Greek Catholic Monastery of Saint Paul and the many-domed church of Saint Paul begun in 1947. The golden walls inside the church are covered with beautiful Byzantine-style wall mosaics that represent Christ Pantocrater, the Virgin wearing a medallion, the Communion of the Apostles, the church fathers and scenes from the Bible.

The area around Harissa is home to some 20 churches and monasteries. The oldest, Saint Anthony of Padua, was built by the Franciscans on land granted by Emir Fakhreddine II in 1628 and confirmed by the Al-Khazen sheikhs. Nearby Bzoummar is the site of the Armenian Catholic patriarchal residence, while the Patriarchate of the Syrian Catholic Community is in Sharfeh. Harissa is also the seat of the  Papal Nuncio in Lebanon.

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