June 6, 2011
This large-format photograph, taken from the Earth-orbiting Space Shuttle Discovery with a 250mm lens, shows most of Lebanon, from the Israeli border to just south of Tripoli. The main distinction is that between the forested coastal mountain ranges which receive rainfall regularly off the Mediterranean, and the yellow-brown "rainshadow" deserts inland (east) of the mountains. Damascus, capital of Syria lies just outside the view bottom right. The biblical and classical cities of Acre (bottom), Tyre, Sidon and Beirut (top, on promontory) all lie on the coast. The Bekaa valley and the Litani River lie inland of the Lebanon Mountains east of Beirut. The agricultural area in the south of the photograph is part of Israel and borders the Golan Heights.
Topics: Fertile Crescent, Middle East, Asia, Hospitality Recreation, Tripoli, Lebanon, Beqaa Valley, Crusades, Litani River, Ancient cities, Beirut, Lebanon, Great Rift Valley, Mediterranean