Air

There are no air services operating within Lebanon, but the country is so small that you don’t really need them (you can drive from one end to the other in half a day).

Bicycle

Lebanon’s steep terrain, the state of many urban roads and the often-erratic local driving style mean that it's not an ideal cycling country. Nevertheless, it's beginning to become popular. Get in touch with Cycling Circle for advice.

Boat

There are no domestic ferries or boat services except pleasure trips.

Bus

Minibuses travel between Beirut and all of Lebanon’s major towns; the only route that has large, Pullman-style buses is Beirut–Tripoli. The best of the buses on that route are operated by Connexion (www.connexion-transport.com) and will drop passengers off at any point along the Beirut–Tripoli highway on request.

Buses usually have a route number and the destination displayed in the front window, but this is usually in Arabic only. Government-run buses have red number plates, and there are a number of independently owned microbuses that cover the same routes; note that the embassies of foreign countries recommend using the government-run buses only. You pay for your ticket on board, either at the start or end of the journey.

Some towns, including Beirut, have privately owned buses that operate a hail-and-ride system. Fares are generally LL1000 for intracity destinations and LL1500 for intercity destinations.

Car & Motorcycle

You need to be a competent driver with very steady nerves to contemplate driving in Lebanon, since rules are cheerfully flouted. A three-lane road, for example, can frequently become seven lanes and intersections are a survival-of-the-fittest experience. Hairpin bends and pot-holed roads are frequent in the mountains, and few roads are gritted after a snowfall.

Beirut’s traffic is often heavy, and road signs (where there are any at all) can be cryptic or misleading. In addition to being generally cautious, remember to stop at military checkpoints and have your passport and car-hire papers ready for inspection.

That said, car-hire prices are very competitive compared to the cost of hiring a driver, and grabbing a vehicle can make the most of limited time. Make sure you've got phone data: navigation with online maps makes things much easier.

Taxi

Most routes around Lebanese towns and cities are covered by service, or shared, taxis, which are usually elderly Mercedes with red licence plates and a taxi sign on the roof. You can hail them at any point on their route and also get out wherever you wish by saying ‘anzil huun’ (drop me off here). Be sure to ask ‘servees?’ before getting in (if it’s an empty car), to ensure the driver doesn’t try to charge you a private taxi fare. Going rates are generally LL1500 to LL4000 for trips within a town, and LL3000 to LL10,000 for trips to outlying areas.

If you want to engage a private taxi, make sure the driver understands exactly where you want to go and negotiate the fare clearly before you get in.

Reputable Beirut-based taxi companies that have English-speaking drivers and well-maintained cars include White Taxi and Lebanon Taxi. Both charge around US$100 for a half-day hire and US$150 for a full-day hire.

Train

There are no train services in Lebanon.