Church of St John the Baptist


Construction of this heartwarmingly beautiful Romanesque church in the medieval streets above the harbour commenced in 1115 and the structure was extended and improved over subsequent centuries. It’s thus an interesting mixture of Arab and Western European designs, with remains of Byzantine mosaics from an earlier structure scattered about the area. The unusual open-air baptistry sits against the north wall, its arches and four supporting pillars topped by a dome. It's not usually open except around 5pm mass.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Byblos attractions

1. Byblos Archaeological Site

0.09 MILES

A well-restored Crusader castle dominates Byblos' atmospheric archaeological site, which incorporates Neolithic, Chalcolithic, Greek and Roman ruins –…

2. City Ramparts

0.11 MILES

You can begin your tour here by turning left to explore the ruins, which include the remains of city ramparts dating from the 3rd and 2nd millennium BC.

3. Crusader Castle

0.13 MILES

A restored 12th-century Crusader castle surrounded by a 10m-wide dry moat is located just inside the entrance to Byblos' atmospheric archaeological site…

4. Royal Tombs

0.14 MILES

These nine tombs were cut in impressive vertical shafts deep into the rock in the 2nd millennium BC and discovered after a landslip. Some of the…

5. Roman Theatre

0.15 MILES

To get access to earlier temples beneath it, this 3rd-century AD Roman theatre was moved and reconstructed by the sea cliff in the 1930s. It's one-third…

6. Temple of Baalat Gebal

0.16 MILES

The site's oldest temple dates back to the early 3rd millennium BC and was dedicated to the goddess of the city. Destroyed by the Amorites, it was…

7. Temple of Resheph

0.19 MILES

This temple dates from the 3rd millennium BC and is thought to have been burned down during the Amorite invasions. It was then replaced with the Temple of…

8. King's Spring

0.19 MILES

Used at least as far back as the Neolithic period, this spring supplied the city with water until the end of the Hellenistic era (and where, according to…