CULTURAL HERITAGE

Maasser el Chouf is a village in the province of Mount Lebanon. Home to the famous Cedars of Lebanon, Maasser el Chouf is presumed to have been continuously inhabited since the 5th century B.C.E.
Archaeological evidence, consisting of mainly of Roman burial sites and pottery, has allowed scholars to date the founding of this picturesque Lebanese village back to the year 450 B.C.E. Perhaps the most prominent of these archaeological remains is a distinctly Roman stone fortress, located in the "Hosn" area of the village.

Little is known about the period that followed the Romans. However, the village witnessed an agricultural boom during the 16th century when the great Prince Fakhreddine presided over the Chouf area, then an Ottoman principality.

Under Ottoman rule, Maasser el Chouf was famous for its vineyards, used in wine and Arak distilleries, and mulberry orchards, which were essential to silk worm farming. Today, Maasser’s ancient traditions remain alive through its residents. Whether by savoring the fine artisanal wines of St. Michael’s Winery or the myriad mouth-watering, locally grown and prepared foods at the annual “Jabalna Festival,” a visit to Maasser el Chouf is a wonderful journey through Lebanese heritage.