· Keserwan

Al Batieh, located in Jounieh, is one of the few well-preserved maritime worship sites that date back anywhere between the second half of the first millennium BC and the 3rd century AD.

Description

The site cliff bears several rock-cut stairs and large openings where a statue of the venerated god would be erected, along with oil lamps in the smaller openings. 

The stairs lead to a cave were the sea water flows - it is a sacred gorge where in ancient times, the worshipers would perform spiritual rites and practices to honor the venerated God, and to purify their souls.

During the Christian era, the site became a worship site dedicated to Saint-George, were it is also believed - according to local tales - that St. Georges came to El Batieh to clean off his spear after battling and slaying the dragon near Beirut (in front of the Saint-George hotel)

Accessibility

The site is located on the sea-side road of Jounieh, facing the military barrack, or what is known today as ATCL road. 

Once you reach the location shown on the below map (bottom of the article), you can notice the rock-cut openings and the Saint-George statue.

Scroll down to enjoy the pictures and to locate the site on the map.

Karim Sokhn

Tour Operator & Tour Guide

References:

Mission de Phénicie, Ernest Renan, 1864-74

Rock-cut openings with figures of Saint-Georges

A general view of the shrine 

The cave stairs

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