Frequently Asked Questions - Beirut
For answers to our most frequently asked questions regarding our Beirut tour, see below.
Is the tour really free?
The Free Walking Tour is the title that now is internationally given to tours that work on a donation basis. At the end of the tour you can give the guide what you felt the tour was worth. It is the best way to ensure that our guides give their best during every tour. So, are the tips of the tour the only income? Yes, the only source of income for the guides is the tips that people provide after the tour. We at Free Walking Tours Beirut & Beyond do not get any commission or sponsoring from any company or organization. Of course, any reasonable tip is accepted; in this way, anyone can join, no matter your travel budget.
WHAT IS A FAIR FEE TO PAY?
The main principle is that you give the guide what you feel the tour was worth, so the decision is up to you. You like to receive an indication? Based on experience, the average tip people give on free walking tours lies between 8 USD (12.000 LL) and 12 USD (18.000 LL).
WHAT LANGUAGE ARE THE TOURS GIVEN IN?
We currently only provide the tour in English. If your understanding of English is not very good, feel free to ask the guide to repeat anything that is unclear; he/she might even be able to speak your language :-)
Do you stop for any breaks?
The tour consists of about one hour walking, and one and a half hour talking. There will be a 5 minute' emergency bathroom and water break in the middle. Please prepare yourself with water or a bathroom visit before joining.
Is there a maximum number of people allowed on the tour?
How far will the walk be?
The tour is a little over 5 kilometers or 3 miles, a circle around Downtown Beirut.
How long will the tour be?
We always strive to do the tour in two and a half hours, as we believe this is the perfect timing for a free walking tour. However, sometimes the tour may take a bit longer or shorter, depending a little bit on the amount of questions and the pace of the group. It is mostly one hour walking, and one and a half hour talking. The tour will end on Martyrs Square.
Can I leave before the tour ends?
You are free to join and free to leave at any time you like. If you need to leave earlier, please do let the guide know before the tour starts, so he/she can keep this in mind and help you to remember. In any case, just before you leave, always let the guide know, so we don’t have to go looking for you. If you are leaving, but still enjoyed the tour, feel free to tip the guide upon your departure.
Do I need to make a reservation?
In general, the tour is always fully booked. Therefore, we strongly recommend you to making a reservation in advance. In this way, you can secure your spot and we know how many people will join the tour. To book your spot, please click here.
How do I recognize the guide?
Where can I find the group picture?
What if only a FEW people show up?
Then you’ll be able to hear the guide better! As long as at least 1 person shows up and wants to take the tour, it’s on!
I can't make it on Tuesday or Thursday; Do you also do private tours?
If you can't make it on Tuesday or Thursday, the best option is to book a private Beirut tour. As our Free Walking Tour guides cannot be booked privately via us, we recommend you to contact Living Lebanon at firstname.lastname@example.org. They will be happy to assist you with arranging for you a private Beirut tour.
Is the tour suitable for children?
Yes! Children are always welcome on our tours, as long as they do not disturb the guiding process. Just remember, it is about 5 km of walking, so please ensure your child will be able to walk this distance.
Where does the tour end?
The tour ends on Martyrs square. From there, you can either go your own way, or the guide will walk you back to the place where the tours started: the entrance of the Beirut souks.
What if it rains?
The good news is that it hardly rains in Lebanon. Unfortunately, if it does, it pours. In principle, we will always try to run the tour as scheduled. That said, the general mindset of the people living in Lebanon is: When it rains, we don't go on a tour. And as they say "when in Rome, do as the Romans do", it is likely that we will cancel the tour in case of severe rainfall. We will always inform you in case of cancellation. No news means the tour is on!
What if I am late for the tour?
We will start walking away from the meeting point about 10 to 15 minutes after the start time of the tour. Please be on time, as it will not be easy to catch up with the tour later. Still too late? Check out the Mohammad Chattah monument; we will probably be there.
How can i find the meeting point?
The meeting point can be found on the "square" in front of the main entrance of the Beirut souks, on the side of Weygand street, next to the Ottoman shrine and where the information booth is. It's on the square on which Zara is located as well. For more details, see here.
Which places do we visit?
The places that are specifically included in the tour are as follows: the Beirut Souks, the Mohammad Chattah monument, the Holiday Inn, the Jewish quarter (from outside), the Roman baths, Nejmeh square, the garden of forgiveness, the Egg and Martyrs square.