The Jabal Al Rihane Biosphere Reserve-Lebanon

A true mosaic of ecological systems broadly representing the “evergreen sclerophylic broussailles and forests” biogeographic region within a Mediterranean biome.

About Abal Al Rihane

A dominant feature of this biosphere reserve is the existence of many mountain peaks such as Jabal Safi, Jabal Sujud, Jabal Bir Kallab, and Jabal Bourqab that culminate at 1300, 1200, 1360 and 1300 meters respectively. This mountainous relief gives rise to a number of eco-zones. From a more aesthetic point of view, such a landscape, dominated by peaks and basins, offers wonderful limitless views. Stands of old oak trees (more than 500 years old) are recognized as outstanding scenic landscapes.

The Rihane differs from other protected areas in Lebanon by its situation at middle altitudes. All the others are either at high altitude with dominance of cedar trees (Tannourine, Ehden, Al-Chouf Cedar reserves) or at very low altitudes such as Palm Islands or Tyre Beach reserves. Also it differs by its nature from the Aammiq wetland.

UNESCO approved the Jabal Rihane Natural Reserve as a ‘Biosphere Reserve’ in September 2007. The aim of this ‘Biosphere Reserve’ is to promote human sustainable development, environmental tourism and scientific research in Jabal Rihane and its surrounding areas, as well as promoting awareness for humans of living in harmony with nature. See the certificate in Biosphere in “Nature Reserve”.

Presently, the Research Program of the Jabal Al Rihane Biosphere Reserve is temporarily run by scientific people from the local communities of the Reserve in cooperation with a number of national and international NGOs, universities and research institutions. It focuses mainly on plants (wild relatives, landraces, culinary, aromatic, medicinal), mammals, birds and herpetofauna; and to a lesser extent on climatological and hydrological monitoring. Recognizing the role of eco-tourism in socio-economic development, individuals from the local communities are undertaking studies of the potential impact of eco-tourism development on the economy of the Rihane Villages.

Explore Abal Al Rihane

Read the UNESCO report

The World Network is governed by the Statutory Framework adopted by the UNESCO General Conference in 1995 which presents the definition, objectives, criteria and the designation procedure for biosphere reserves.