Yup, that’s exactly what I said when I heard that they were going to be playing in Beirut, Lebanon. Ok, I maaaaay have checked their website to make sure there were no Dubai/UAE-based concerts first, and THEN made the final decision to go to Beirut. It meant 2 ticks in the book – Lebanon, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
We decided to go Golden Circle for this one as the tickets were cheap, and “it’s the Chili Peppers”. So, we got our group of friends together, bought tickets and shortly after did the whole visa issue, flights, hotels etc., and then we set off – 6th to 8th September.
The concert was held on a Thursday night which worked out really well for us as it meant taking only one day of leave, and still being able to spend the entire weekend there travelling and sight seeing.
We started off the holiday by chilling by the Riviera hotel pool-side bar which was fabulous – great music, awesome sunset and good vibes. Once Ahmed arrived (coming in on a later flight), we made ourselves beautiful(er) and headed down to the concert venue along with the thousands of other concert-goers. We headed straight to a spot in the middle of Golden Circle and (tried to) settled in for the night.
It was MANIC! Personally, I was not happy being in the craziness of Golden Circle. I felt that they crammed too many people in there, and being the short-ass that I am, I constantly had tall people in front of me which meant almost no view of the stage, and therefore no enjoyable close-up views of the band. About half-way through Murray suggested we head out to General Standing which I was very happy about – we found ourselves a little spot right at the back where we could now see the entire stage (albeit that the band were now little up there), and we had space to breathe and plonk our bums (Man, I must be getting old )
But that aside – the concert was great! Anthony Kiedis has great energy on stage, and the Chili Peppers know how to keep the crowd entertained!! I am certainly grateful that I can do things such as hop an a plane and fly to another country to watch a band play live!
Once we’d got that done, the rest of the holiday was spent sight-seeing (well, really only Friday was.) Lauren organised us a tourguide and he picked us up from the hotel and spent the entire day driving us around and showing us sights.
After stopping for breakfast, we headed off to Jeita Grotto – currently under voting to be one of the new 7 Wonders of the World – where we spent about an hour walking around the underground cave. They do not allow any photography there so I was unable to take any photos of the stalagtites and stalagmites, so below are a few photos taken from Google by professional, permitted photographers.
We also visited Byblos – which is believed to be the worlds oldest continually inhabited city in the world, and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site – where we had a wonderful lunch overlooking a marina. Our next stop was Harissa, which is a village located 650m above sea-level. “Our Lady of Lebanon” statue is located here which is a 15-ton bronze (painted white) statue of The Virgin Mary, overlooking the bay.
We eventually made it back to Beirut, and our hotel, around 7pm when we once again got ourselves all drssed up and hit the town for a night of partying.
Our flight was the next afternoon so the morning was a very quiet one by the pool, having a quick bite before heading to the airport.
And on arrival back in the office, I was advised that I’d be heading back to Beirut the following weekend for a meeting with a client – so we’ll see if it brings any additional adventures!