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(Two Notable Sites 4 km)

From Chtaura drive two kilometers to the west (towards Beirut), then turn left to the village of Qab Elias. This town has a landmark medieval castle ruin and a mysterious rock-cut altar. The ruin of a guardian fortress, probably dating from the 12th century or later, may have been a Druze feudal castle. Just south of Qab Elias is a rock carving high on a cliff.  Although it has no identifying inscriptions, it is thought to be a monumental altar, perhaps from late Hellenistic or early Roman times (about the first century BC). Qab Elias is a large village with a full complement of shops, souvenirs and handicrafts, including sheepskins.

 


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