Nowadays, when we think of the Middle East, we're often met with a harsh juxtaposition between seemingly endless riches from the oil industry and the harsh brutality of conflict and war. We often forget the beautiful nature hiding between the sea and sand.

One of the oases of the region is Lebanon. Located between Syria and the Mediterranean Sea, with Israel to the South and Cyprus to the west, Lebanon is a relatively small country with only a little over 10 thousand square kilometres of land.  But despite a  small surface area, the country is home to numerous mountains, 225km stretch of coastline and scenic valleys. With everything located so closely, one could go skiing in the mountains and sunbathing at the beach within hours!

Its capital, Beirut, is one of the oldest cities in the world, being inhabited for more than 5,000 years. And the city alone is just a taste of the region's rich history. With mountains and the sea at the hand's reach, and the land so culturally saturated that people spend hours writing guides on how to properly explore it, it's not hard to see why Lebanon is called "the pearl of the middle east". It's no surprise that tourists would flock to see all the country's wonders.

However, a lot of things changed in the region in 2010 when the Syrian Civil War broke out. As Lebanon shares a border with Syria, it didn't take long before the ripples reached the country. While the government reported over 2 million tourists at the beginning of 2010, as soon as the war started, the number dropped by 38%. The neighbouring war has been nothing but disruptive for the Lebanese economy.

And while it's understandable that the conflict nearby scared people that wanted to visit Lebanon away, there's too much beauty to ignore. That is exactly what a 29-year-old photographer from Jezzine, Rami Rizk, is trying to show. In his 2018 photoseries "Lebanon like never seen before" Rizk showcases the beautiful landscape of the country, full of green trees spread across the mountains and valleys, cities knitted between land and sea, and the stunning architecture.

"I choose Lebanon because it's simply my land, my country, that I want to show the way I see it, and I want it to be perceived." the photographer told Bored Panda. If he could put together a message he is trying to convey with his photos it would be "love Lebanon because it's different than what you think. And that's what [he shows] in [his] captures".

Scroll down below to see the beauty that Rizk saw and captured for the world to see, and don't forget to comment and vote for your favorites.

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#1

Lebanon Photos

Rami Rizk Report

Sreenath 4 months ago

I feel like this place is calling my name : )

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#2

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John R. 4 months ago

This looks wonderful! Like something out of a dream! What was this place before?

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#3

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Billy 42 4 months ago

soso

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#4

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Downtown Beirut, mosque and church coexisting in peace and respect

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#5

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Cedar tree (tree represented on Lebanese flag)

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#6

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Mehyeddine Solh 4 months ago (edited)

Oyoun orghosh ...where the snow high becomes more than 30 meters in the winter...lovely stories you will hear from the people there

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#7

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Daria B 4 months ago (edited)

A city by the waterfall? Wow, that's unusual. I'm so used to see waterfalls in separated nature parks, and even when they're within a city, again, they're in a park area.

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#8

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Danielle Holder 4 months ago

They tried a bunch of dif things and that shape (mid & left) is the best at preventing soil erosion and breaking waves, as they all lock together without special placement.

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#9

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Thomas Es Thomas 4 months ago

Look at those submerged foundations!

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#10

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Paan Sy 4 months ago

the ruins...

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#11

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Harissa, (statue of the virgin mary) protecting Lebanon.

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#12

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Mehyeddine Solh 4 months ago

In beqaa valley?

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#13

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Bettina Jansen 4 months ago

what are those odd trees ?

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#14

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Vojtěch Božovský 4 months ago

Anyone knows what and where is this?

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#15

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Rami Rizk 4 months ago

south Lebanon, Naqoura

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#16

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Farah Darwich 4 months ago

Horsh Beirut, Beirut (capital) park

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#17

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Chouf region, home to beautiful mountains and red roofed houses

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#18

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Faraya, home to the highest peak in lebanon, chalets, and ski city in winter. Newly erected statue of St-Charbel watches over Lebanon.

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#19

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Renae Hislop 4 months ago

How are these all so great?!

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#20

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Hope Floats 4 months ago

Who would think that Lebanon could be this green and beautiful? I had this image of grey land,with rocks and looking like a battle ground,so to me ,this is such a pleasant surprise.... Beautiful photo...

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#21

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Amazing architecture !!!

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#22

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Excellent !!!

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#23

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Renae Hislop 4 months ago

*Every movie producer rushes in*

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#24

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Extreme beauty, and photography !!!

#25

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Farah Darwich 4 months ago

And you can here both calls to prayer, athan from the mosque and church bells

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#26

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Cinzia Sammarco 4 months ago

Sounds like ancient times.

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#27

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Monika Soffronow 4 months ago

What amazing shadows!

#28

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Amazing !!!

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#29

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#31

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Jezzine town

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#32

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Renae Hislop 4 months ago

Stunning

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#33

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Annette Delgato 3 months ago

I want to visit all the archaeological sites

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#34

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Zeituna Bay, yacht marina and restaurant area in downtown Beirut

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#35

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Excellent !!!

#36

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Beauty in nature !!!

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#39

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Hady Basha 4 months ago

Hamas doesnt operate on Lebanese soil, its a Palestinian group on Palestinian soil, if you want to spew hate and propaganda, AT LEAST do some research !

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#40

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Cinzia Sammarco 4 months ago

Are those Roman ruins?

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#41

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#42

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Annette Delgato 3 months ago

I wish the photographer would put captions on all of these! At least just the place names

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#43

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Nabih Sader 3 months ago

The Town of Becharreh, north Lebanon

#44

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sharron lynn parsons 4 months ago

Simply awesome !!!

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#45

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Renae Hislop 4 months ago

Me :upvotes and saves all the photos

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Yesou3 el malak (Jesus the king) overlooking the highway, hotel and sea

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#47

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chantal hawat 4 months ago

Harissa's church

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#48

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Peter Korsten 4 months ago

This could have been taken in Malta...

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#49

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Memii H 4 months ago

Saidaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

#50

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