BEIRUT: “Live Love Lebanon,” the Tourism Ministry’s campaign aimed at boosting visitors to the country, is proving a hit with the Lebanese, with the hash tag now trending on Twitter.
The campaign, launched earlier this month during the Dubai Universal Travel and Tourism Fair and then again last week in Beirut, seeks to challenge the image of Lebanon as tied to the Syrian crisis, which has caused a major decline in the country’s tourism sector over the last three years.
The promotion is a guide to Lebanon’s most prominent touristic sites and includes different programs and packages for various Lebanese regions on the campaign’s website www.livelovelebanon.com.
The programs fall under six categories: culture, nature, adventure, wine, beach and festivals.
The ministry also released a YouTube video, a collection of photos taken by citizens, showing the “Lebanon we do not see in the media.” Pictures showed traditional food dishes in Lebanon, the nightlife in the country and natural sites, as well as cheerful people.
It encouraged citizens to serve as “ambassadors for their country and show the world what the country is truly about.”
The ministry encouraged all social media lovers to capture a picture or video anywhere in Lebanon and upload it on Instagram with the hash tag #LiveLoveLebanon or on the campaign's official Facebook page to “promote a positive image of their country.”
“You've seen the international news reports. You've heard the talk. But you know Lebanon is much more than that,” the video’s description said. “From exciting Beirut nights to the serenity of its villages, and from the crashing waves of its shores to its snow-capped mountains, with your help the true face of Lebanon can reach the world.”
The LiveLoveLebanon campaign is inspired by the successful and award-winning movement Live Love Beirut, which started in 2012 with the aim of showing the real Lebanon to the world.
The hash tag went viral on twitter, with some restaurants and businesses promoting their offers and people praising the campaign or sharing photos of different Lebanese sites.
“LiveLoveLebanon is great. Despite all challenges, Lebanon rocks! Building a positive image is a strength. Well done!,” user Bob Ghosn tweeted.
“This summer will be different in Lebanon,” a tweet by Salman Andary read.