Every year during May, tens of thousands of Lebanese visit the shrine of Our Lady of Lebanon in Harissa. Many choose to go by foot during the day and even organize night hikes to dedicate them to the Virgin Mary. Unfortunately though, the roads to Harissa are ill-equipped and don’t have any sidewalks or path ways for pedestrians and we’ve witnessed several incidents in the past where people get hit by speeding cars.

Having said that, I’m surprised no one has considered setting up sidewalks for pedestrians especially that the roads are pretty wide and it’s really easy to make way for a small sidewalk for all the pilgrims. It shouldn’t cost much and it would definitely encourage more people to walk up, and help the restaurants open on the way.

Personally speaking, I stopped walking up to Harissa using the main road years ago and I’m taking instead a trail in the woods called “Darb el Sama”. The trail has two or three starting points and you can easily go down using the Teleferique ( or just take a cab) if you don’t have a ride.