Connected to its neighbouring village, Shimlan, by “The Trail of Peace”, Hima Kayfoun is considered a cultural reunion area, where communities from different backgrounds can meet and enjoy the serenity of nature. This part of the municipal land of Kayfoun was declared as a Hima in 2017 to preserve its natural resources and for sustainable use such as ecotourism especially that it is the first Hima in Mount Lebanon. Being on the flyway of the soaring bird migration over Lebanon, Kayfoun is considered an important site where maintaining bird diver- sity is essential. Therefore, it is a must to protect this area under the Hima concept.
29 November 2017 was an important day for SPNL welcoming Kayfoun’s municipal council decree to declare the village as Hima. The municipal council, led by Mr. Ali Dagher, was proactive in declaring part of the municipal land as Hima for sustainable use such as ecotourism.
The Council discussed the issue of establishing a protected area (Hima) within Kayfoun jurisdiction, in cooperation with the Society for the Protection of Nature in Lebanon (SPNL), in order to organize the sustainable usages in the area and to preserve its natural resources, based on scientific studies which would identify the locations and uses of these resources, to re-create and benefit from a sustainable and renewable ecosystem. It should be noted that the Kayfoun real estate area is zoned according to the Master Plan issued in 2005.
A week later, an agreement was made between Kayfoun Municipality and the Society for the Protection of Nature in Lebanon – SPNL, to establish an environmental center in the town of Kayfoun with the aim of:
- Raising environmental awareness in the town and the surrounding villages in Mount Lebanon.
- Supporting the youth Homat al-Hima and building their capacities in the preservation of the natural and cultural heritage in this distinctive region in Lebanon.
- Working together to identify and establish a protected area (Hima) for the natural and cultural resources and connecting it through educational trails and promoting ecotourism.
- Organizing seminars and workshops aimed at achieving the aforementioned objectives.
- Creating projects and what is necessary to secure the required funding to achieve these objectives and what may result from them through projects that encourage the preservation of the natural and cultural heritage of this region and promote tourism and environmental awareness.
Kayfoun (Arabic: كيفون), is a medium-sized village in the Mount Lebanon Governorate, Aley District, in the Republic of Lebanon. It lies slightly south of the village of Souk El Gharb. It has a stunning view of Beirut and the Mediterranean Sea from the western side and a relaxing view of the mountains on the eastern side. Kayfoun is around 800 m above sea level and 26 km from central Beirut. Kayfoun is known for being the summer recreational and relaxing destination for Beirut residents.