Syria Travel Guide

  • Yalbouga Hammam
    by Robin020
  • Omayyad Mosque at night
    Omayyad Mosque at night
    by mikey_e
  • Alleppo castle
    Alleppo castle
    by Tuna_ank

Syria Highlights

  • Pro
    midnight_mike profile photo

    midnight_mike says…

     Lots of history, few tourists, low prices 

  • Con
    cbeaujean profile photo

    cbeaujean says…

     customs + administrative worryings 

  • In a nutshell
    Mcclovis profile photo

    Mcclovis says…

     Scrap the media image: seeing is believing 

Map of Syria
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Damascus

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Dimashq/Damascus-1814868/TravelGuide-Damascus.html

820,2205,66

Aleppo

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Halab/Aleppo-1814607/TravelGuide-Aleppo.html

757,1842,23

Latakia

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Ladhiqiyah/Latakia-1816729/TravelGuide-Latakia.html

80,180,5

Apamea

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hamah/Apamea-1816448/TravelGuide-Apamea.html

54,320,0

`Afrin

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Halab/Afrin-1817140/TravelGuide-Afrin.html

48,68,0

Palmyra

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hims/Palmyra-1811133/TravelGuide-Palmyra.html

237,767,0

Kassab

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Ladhiqiyah/Kassab-1813673/TravelGuide-Kassab.html

8,20,0

Majdal Shams

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Majdal_Shams-1813009/TravelGuide-Majdal_Shams.html

9,26,0

Busra ash Sham

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Dara/Busra_ash_Sham-1815154/TravelGuide-Busra_ash_Sham.html

51,254,1

Hamah

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hamah/Hamah-1814583/TravelGuide-Hamah.html

131,421,4

Qal`at as Sim`an

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Halab/Qalat_as_Siman-1812363/TravelGuide-Qalat_as_Siman.html

24,95,0

Qal`at al Hisn

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hims/Qalat_al_Hisn-1812376/TravelGuide-Qalat_al_Hisn.html

38,159,0

Ma`lula

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Rif_Dimashq/Malula-1812983/TravelGuide-Malula.html

50,206,0

As Suwayda'

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_as_Suwayda/As_Suwayda-1816013/TravelGuide-As_Suwayda.html

24,51,0

Al Basit

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Ladhiqiyah/Al_Basit-1817017/TravelGuide-Al_Basit.html

0,1,0

Shahba'

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_as_Suwayda/Shahba-1811513/TravelGuide-Shahba.html

33,77,0

Qanawat

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_as_Suwayda/Qanawat-1812319/TravelGuide-Qanawat.html

37,122,0

`Ayn Ziwan

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Ayn_Ziwan-1815806/TravelGuide-Ayn_Ziwan.html

13,17,0

Al Qamishli

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Hasakah/Al_Qamishli-1816595/TravelGuide-Al_Qamishli.html

6,4,0

Saydnaya

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Rif_Dimashq/Saydnaya-1811557/TravelGuide-Saydnaya.html

3,7,0

Hims

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hims/Hims-1814347/TravelGuide-Hims.html

3,24,0

Dayr Quruh

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Dayr_Quruh-1809132/TravelGuide-Dayr_Quruh.html

15,53,0

Tartus

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Tartus/Tartus-1810744/TravelGuide-Tartus.html

2,37,0

Safita

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Tartus/Safita-1811716/TravelGuide-Safita.html

0,22,1

Ma`arrat an Nu`man

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Idlib/Maarrat_an_Numan-1813099/TravelGuide-Maarrat_an_Numan.html

2,11,0

Kafr Buhum

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hamah/Kafr_Buhum-1813824/TravelGuide-Kafr_Buhum.html

0,2,0

Dar Ta`izzah

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Halab/Dar_Taizzah-1814985/TravelGuide-Dar_Taizzah.html

14,26,0

Ar Raqqah

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_ar_Raqqah/Ar_Raqqah-1816354/TravelGuide-Ar_Raqqah.html

0,2,0

Al Yahudiyah

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Al_Yahudiyah-1816524/TravelGuide-Al_Yahudiyah.html

18,41,0

Qal`at al Hisn

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Qalat_al_Hisn-1809117/TravelGuide-Qalat_al_Hisn.html

1,5,0

Birkat Ram

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Birkat_Ram-1811968/TravelGuide-Birkat_Ram.html

1,9,0

Qal`at Nimrud

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Qalat_Nimrud-1812351/TravelGuide-Qalat_Nimrud.html

3,27,0

Hawarin

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Hims/Hawarin-1814436/TravelGuide-Hawarin.html

0,3,0

Baniyas

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Tartus/Baniyas-1815639/TravelGuide-Baniyas.html

1,3,0

Baniyas

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Baniyas-1815640/TravelGuide-Baniyas.html

13,39,0

Al Qunaytirah

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_al_Qunaytirah/Al_Qunaytirah-1816567/TravelGuide-Al_Qunaytirah.html

0,10,0

Al Barah

http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/Middle_East/Syria/Muhafazat_Idlib/Al_Barah-1817030/TravelGuide-Al_Barah.html

0,22,0

Damascus

See all 820 Damascus Tips
  • Omayyad Mosque

    Damascus Things to Do

    The Ummayad Mosque, also known as the Grand Mosque of Damascus (Arabic: جامع بني أمية الكبير, transl. Ğām' Banī 'Umayyah al-Kabīr), is one of the largest and oldest mosques in the world. Located in one of the holiest sites in...

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  • Beit Al Mamlouka

    Damascus Hotels

    Rooms & Suites Rooms offer exceptional grace and comfort and all give views over either the hotel’s...

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  • jabri house

    Damascus Restaurants

    I've been many times to Beit Jabri, the atmosphere is very nice and you make an encounter of meeting either a famous Syrian actor or actress there by only having a drink or a meal there. There are different sections in the restaurant and it assures your privacy if needed and the availability to accommodate more than all your friends (I already had...

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Aleppo

See all 757 Aleppo Tips
  • Citadel

    Aleppo Things to Do

    The doorway into the Citadel at the top of the ramped bridge is located on the right hand side. It was deliberately placed on the side in order to prevent attackers from forcing their way into the citadel. Above the doors are the most interesting intertwined snake carvings along with Arabic inscriptions. Past the doors is a zigzag of corridors with...

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  • Beit Salahieh Hotel

    Aleppo Hotels

    The Beit Salahieh, is a lovely hotel (converted from a 15th century palace), which has panoramic...

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  • dragon great wall

    Aleppo Restaurants

    In 2008 August my husband,my daughter and myself with the help of 2 local police officers searched for the dragon Great Wall Tes.Sadly we found it butwas a shut down Indian rest. So we finally got Ikebana in Sherato Hotel .The chef is Malaysian.Its a Japanese / Asian rest. Really delicious.The chef is great and very knid and friendly.Definitely NOt...

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Latakia

See all 80 Latakia Tips
  • Mate (mati) drink

    Latakia Local Customs

    Mate in Arabic (mati)is south American drink but very popular drink in Syria,Is drunk with Massasa (strow )and hot water.Those who share the mate join in a kind of bond of total acceptance and friendship.some of the benefits of drinking yerba mate tea.1. Rich in AntioxidantsYerba mate tea is very high in antioxidants; it's got about 90% more...

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  • Cote D'Azur De Cham

    Latakia Hotels

    It is rated as 5 Starts; I would rate it as 4 Stars. It is clean, on the beach.. The receiptions...

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  • Some Syrian Mezze (starters ) or for...

    Latakia Local Customs

    MAGDOUSIngredientsEggplantsSweet red pepper pasteCrushed walnutsOlive oilSaltSliced garlic (optional)The stuffingMix together the sweet red pepper paste with the crushed walnuts and the garlic.MOUHAMMARAIngredients100 gr. bread crumbs50 gr. sweet red pepper paste10 gr. crushed dried hot red pepper20 gr. cumin40 gr. concentrated pomegranate syrup100...

    more

Apamea

See all 54 Apamea Tips
  • Ottoman Mosque

    Apamea Things to Do

    The Ottoman-period mosque was built in the 16th century using stones from the Roman ruins of Apamea. It is located at the foothill of the citadel mound, just above the Khan, and was used by the pilgrims staying at the caravanserai on their way to Mecca.IMPORTANT UPDATE: In March 2012, this mosque was damaged in the shelling by the Syrian...

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  • The Apamea Museum

    Apamea Things to Do

    The Apamea museum is housed in an Ottoman khan (caravanserai) located in the town below Apamea. The khan was built in the 16th century, with stones from the ruins of Apamea, and was used as a resting stop for pilgrims travelling from Turkey to Mecca. On my first visit to Apamea in December 2006, my travel companions and I were pressed for time so...

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  • Qala'at al-Mudiq

    Apamea Things to Do

    The Apamea Citadel, or Qala'at al-Mudiq in Arabic, occupies the top of a hill overlooking al-Ghab valley and the ruins of Apamea. This natural hill rises from the ground like a volcano, much like the one on which Aleppo's citadel was built. In antiquity, this hill was site of the Greek Acropolis of Apamea, but over time, its strategic position was...

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`Afrin

See all 48 `Afrin Tips
  • when is best time to visit Syrian...

    `Afrin Tourist Traps

    When is the best time to visit Syria?- The best time to visit Syria is spring or autumn, as the temperature is in the mild mid 20s. Winter is too cold and Summer is probably too hot for all but the most hardy traveler, add to that frequent electricity and water shortages during the hot summer months.

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  • Internet and Netcafes

    `Afrin Local Customs

    InternetSyrians has easy and cheap internet access. Internet is very common around the cities at internet cafes. since the Syrian upraising and crisis that started january 2011 most of Facebook and YouTube have been blocked and monitored but there are still some websites unblocked. The cafes are very friendly but in order to avoid being price...

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  • Mate (mati) drink

    `Afrin Local Customs

    Mate in Arabic (mati)is south American drink but very popular drink in Syria,Is drunk with Massasa (strow )and hot water.Those who share the mate join in a kind of bond of total acceptance and friendship.some of the benefits of drinking yerba mate tea.1. Rich in AntioxidantsYerba mate tea is very high in antioxidants; it's got about 90% more...

    more

Palmyra

See all 237 Palmyra Tips
  • The theatre of Palmyra

    Palmyra Things to Do

    palmyra pleasant evenings : it is worthy of consideration , whereas the long evenings in the desert are very pleasant.the sight there invites us for some set and meditation ….some people sat here, they ate, drank, wore, and lived life like us ....truly ?..

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  • Temple of Bel

    Palmyra Things to Do

    The size and grandeur of the Temple of Bel make this one of the greatest temples of the Roman east. This enormous temple is quite befitting of the most important Semitic god, Bel (or Baal), who was equated with the Greek god Zeus. The columned porticoes of the outer structure of the temple surround a large courtyard in which the cella (inner...

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  • Grand Colonnade

    Palmyra Things to Do

    Built mostly in the early 2nd century AD, Palmyra's legendary Grand Colonnade measures more than 1km in length. The avenue leads from the Temple of Bel in the east to the Funerary Temple at the western end, and makes two slight turns along the way, at the Monumental Arch and at the Tetrapylon. The two slight turns make this avenue unlike the cardo...

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Kassab

See all 8 Kassab Tips
  • fresh and organic

    Kassab Shopping

    A roadside shop with herbs, honey and oil on sale.As my husband is a firm believer in the curative properties of honey, he insisted on stopping when we were passing a roadside shop with shelves of oil and honey on display. He bargained for the honey but the old man was reluctant to reduce his price. Mountain honey and zattar [dried...

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  • on Lake Balloran

    Kassab Restaurants

    This restaurant is built out onto Balloran Lake. It seems very popular, and justifiably so. The food is excellent. You order meat by weight, so we had a kilo between 4 of us. This was mixture of grilled chicken, lamb and kofta/kababs. We had astarter of french fies, hummous and toumiya [garlic in thick yoghurt/labna] and pickles. All delicious. I...

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  • lunch by the lake

    Kassab Things to Do

    We stopped for lunch by the lake formed by the Balloran Dam. This dam was constructed in the 1950s to conserve the water from the hills. It ia a large expanse of water and very peaceful. We were there on a Friday and there were many people, some eating at the Tahon Restaurant, others cooking their own food beside the road or in the forest.

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Majdal Shams

See all 9 Majdal Shams Tips
  • Beware of the witch!

    Majdal Shams Restaurants

    At a height of 1115m above sea level, this is one of the highest restaurants in Israel. From here you have a beautiful view. The place itself a beautiful, rustic, cabin offering a selection of quiche, soups, locally made cheese, casseroles, fish, lamb and beef. All served with local herbs. This is the perfect place to end a day of snow on the...

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  • Mount Hermon Ski Resort

    Majdal Shams Things to Do

    This is not a fancy ski resort in European standards, but it's the only one we have in Israel... People come here to ski, or just to play in the snow or enjoy some of the attractions built for the kids.

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  • Shouting Hill

    Majdal Shams Local Customs

    Majdal Shams is right on the border with Syria. The fence separated the Golan Druze from their brothers in Syria. This place is where Druze from both sides come to see each other. As the distance from the other side if minimal here. People come here and shout to their relatives on the other side.

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Busra ash Sham

See all 51 Busra ash Sham Tips
  • Mosque of Mabrak el-Naqa

    Busra ash Sham Things to Do

    Located north-east end of the historic centre of Bosra, the Mosque of Mabrak el-Naqa was built in 1136 AD and expanded in the 13th century. It has an usual egg-shaped white cupola over a black basalt structure, and a square black basalt minaret. It is believed to have been built on the spot where the Prophet Mohammed camped in a tent on his visit...

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  • Bosra Cham Palace

    Busra ash Sham Hotels

    Bosra only has one hotel option, the Bosra Cham Palace Hotel. It is part of the state-owned 'luxury'...

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  • The Kalybé

    Busra ash Sham Things to Do

    At the north-east corner of the intersection between the decumanus maximus and the cardo rose another 2nd century AD monumental structure, the Kalybé. It faced the Nymphaeum on the opposite side, and consisted of an exedra with niches flanked by two Corinthian columns. Only the two columns and a fragment of the entablature above have survived, but...

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Hamah

See all 131 Hamah Tips
  • A Pictorial Day Tour to the beautiful ...

    Hamah Things to Do

    These Pictures which paint thousands of words. If you happen to visit Syria, it is a must to have a break to visit even just drink a cup of coffee or taste a Syrian Cuisine in a Restaurant on the Riverside where you can also enjoy the pictorial beauty of the Landscape with all inclusive the the nature of Orontes River, the greeneries of the Valley...

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  • Cairo Hotel

    Hamah Hotels

    Hama's Cairo Hotel is one of the great travellers' hotels of the Middle East. It is nothing much to...

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  • Some Syrian Mezze (starters ) or for...

    Hamah Local Customs

    MAGDOUSIngredientsEggplantsSweet red pepper pasteCrushed walnutsOlive oilSaltSliced garlic (optional)The stuffingMix together the sweet red pepper paste with the crushed walnuts and the garlic.MOUHAMMARAIngredients100 gr. bread crumbs50 gr. sweet red pepper paste10 gr. crushed dried hot red pepper20 gr. cumin40 gr. concentrated pomegranate syrup100...

    more

Qal`at as Sim`an

  • Church of St Simeon

    Qal`at as Sim`an Things to Do

    The Church of St. Simeon (or Qala Siman as it is known to the Syrians) is about 1 hour out of Aleppo. It is the site of where St. Simeon chose to lead the religious life alone as a hermit monk. But instead of living in a cave, St. Simeon lived on top of a pillar 12-18 meters high. He used to preach atop this pillar. After his death, the church was...

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  • Mushabbak Church

    Qal`at as Sim`an Off The Beaten Path

    One of the best-preserved churches in the 'dead cities' of northwestern Syria, al-Mushabbak is located about halfway between Aleppo and Saint Simeon. The church dates from the late 5th century AD and was built to provide an initial stop along the important pilgrimage route to Saint Simeon. As a result, the best craftsmen and architects were...

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  • Selling Flowers in Springtime

    Qal`at as Sim`an Local Customs

    A young local boy, with brown hair and blue-grey eyes, was attempting to sell wild flowers to the tourists to make a living. He was rather timid, but quite friendly, so I gave him a tip in exchange for this photo, instead of buying a flower.

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Qal`at al Hisn

See all 38 Qal`at al Hisn Tips
  • Krak des Chevaliers

    Qal`at al Hisn Things to Do

    The best full views of this incredible architectural masterpiece (seen in the attached photo) are on the road just west of the castle. Make sure you stop for photos before you get close to it.IMPORTANT UPDATE: Krak des Chevaliers has suffered severe damage during the civil war between the Syrian government and the Free Syrian Army. More recently,...

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  • Krak Des Chevaliers (set 8)

    Qal`at al Hisn Things to Do

    If ou come late in the morning or near noontime at the Krak Des Chevaliers, and you're into really seeing various parts of the castle, chances are you'll be ending up at one of the several tower's rooftops already late in the afternoon, which means, you'll be watching the golden sun going down as it sets down --- kind of beauty in serenity.Entry...

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  • The Dark Passageways of the Castle (set...

    Qal`at al Hisn Things to Do

    The castle is best viewed outside, and best felt inside.The various passageways which are mostly dark and some undergrounds are kind of cold and eerie esp. when you're navigating them alone. But that's how you can have a feel of the place, you'll imagine how it was during the time of the Crusaders, you might get lucky hearing the sounds of horse...

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Ma`lula

See all 50 Ma`lula Tips
  • Some Syrian Mezze (starters ) or for...

    Ma`lula Local Customs

    MAGDOUSIngredientsEggplantsSweet red pepper pasteCrushed walnutsOlive oilSaltSliced garlic (optional)The stuffingMix together the sweet red pepper paste with the crushed walnuts and the garlic.MOUHAMMARAIngredients100 gr. bread crumbs50 gr. sweet red pepper paste10 gr. crushed dried hot red pepper20 gr. cumin40 gr. concentrated pomegranate syrup100...

    more
  • Then I lost my eyeglasses at Ma'loula!

    Ma`lula Things to Do

    Now, I really believed in karma. I was hungry then I remember I have some bananas in my camera bag which I bought at the service van station in Damascus, I ate a couple of it and out of my mind I threw the peel on the ground while walking, in seconds I was looking for my eyeglasses --- I've lost it! Then I remember I did something wrong, I walked...

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  • Don't litter

    Ma`lula Warnings and Dangers

    I don't know if it's dangerous but surely it should be a warning. My belief in karma or the saying that what goes around comes around - was strengthened here.I was a bit hungry and I started eating the bananas I've bought at the van station in Damascus. While walking I throw the banana peeling on the ground just on the side of the St. Takla convent...

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As Suwayda'

See all 24 As Suwayda' Tips
  • Suweida's countryside

    As Suwayda' Things to Do

    Suweida lies in the very fertile region of Hauran, dominated by the gentle sloping 1800-metre Jebel al-Arab peak. The area's volcanic soil and good winter rains have turned it into an agricultural region since ancient times. In fact, the Hauran, Graeco-Roman Auranitis, was one of the breadbaskets of the Roman Empire and the town of Suweida in...

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  • Suweida Archaeological Museum

    As Suwayda' Things to Do

    All guidebooks indicate that this small, little-visited museum is the main reason to stop in Suweida. It is said to have an exceptional collection of mosaics and other artefacts and fragments from Suweida and nearby Shahba (Philippopolis). Regretfully, I was not able to visit the museum due to time constraints. In fact, Suweida was not even on my...

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  • Roman City Gate

    As Suwayda' Things to Do

    One of the few remaining vestiges of Dionysias (i.e., Roman Suweida), this arched structure was the northern city gate. It was built in the same black volcanic stone that gave the town its original Nabataean name, Suda, and its current Arabic name, Suweida, both of which mean the "little black one". The gate is nowadays a mere monument in the...

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Comments (1)

  • planxty's Profile Photo
    Feb 7, 2013 at 6:18 AM

    I am not quite sure where to post this, and it may seem like stating the obvious somewhat given the current situation in Syria but, literally this minute, I have heard on the BBC News that the British Foreign Office is now advising citizens of the UK no longer travel to Syria and that those already there leave by whatever possible means.

    Obviously, citizens of other countries should check with their respective Governments to ascertain the situation in relation to any potential travel.

    • angiebabe's Profile Photo
      Jun 2, 2013 at 2:03 PM

      Ive come to see if theres any indication of tourists still having ventured into Syria in the last few months - as crazy as my enquiry sounds!

Syria

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