Karm el Mehr,
Zgharteghrine, Kahf el Malloul, Imar
There are four Christian villages in the predominantly
Muslim Casa (Sub-prefecture) of Dynnieh. These four
villages, connected to Kfar Habou, Ardeh and Rashii,
have managed to obtain a direct road link with Zgharta,
a large Christian town in the region. This explains
why these villages feel safe despite the present widespread
fundamentalist and Jihadi wave.
Zgharteghrine stands 2,500 feet above sea level and
opens the way to Kahf el-Malloul, the Oak-tree Cave,
standing at 3,000 feet. Beyond lie a third village,
Karm el-Mahr, the Vineyard Generous Dowry, at 3,300
feet, and finally Imar nestling at 3,500 feet.
Four phantom villages we find, nearly all their inhabitants
having moved to Australia. A few return from time
to time and then only for short visits. Some however
have built rich and luxurious residences.
These collectivities are surrounded by extensive forests
of pines, cedars, oak trees, and various other kinds
of woodland growth. Many flocks of goats seek pasture
over this otherwise neglected wilderness. The region
north of Miziarah opens onto a fantastic valley where
fresh water flows. The citadel of Ayeshah stands near
a hamlet whose abundant springs could be successfully
exploited by a mineral water company.
In Australia there is an association of ladies originating
from these villages who are active on behalf of this
beautiful region now provided with cultural, sporting
and social activities.
In all four villages there is rivalry between the
inhabitants to see which place has the most beautiful
church. There are many old ruins and ancient cellars
to be found, the remains of a former village, a wine
press, a wood of oaks named after Saint Maura, caves
and springs from which gush sparkling streams. Tourism
has on the whole been neglected, although from outside
parties of hikers arrange outings here.
The fine woodlands on the western slopes of Cornet
es-Sawda have a view of the sea on the horizon. The
whole averages fifteen miles from Zgharta, twenty-five
from Tripoli and sixty-five from the capital Beirut.
Joseph Matar - Translation from the French:
- Karm el Mohr (Mehr) - Church: >> View
Movie << (2013-02-15)
- Imar Forest: >> View
Movie << (2013-02-15)