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سوريا‎

Damascus – Umayyad Mosque
دمشق – الجامع الاموي

The most important monument in Damascus (دمشق), and perhaps the entire country, is the magnificent Umayyad Mosque (الجامع الاموي). No single historic site symbolizes the rich and varied cultural heritage of Syria as does this remarkable mosque. It has served as a place of worship continuously for several millennia, a holy place for over a thousand years even prior to the arrival of Islam. While …

Damascus – Gates & Towers
دمشق – البوابات و الابراج

The old city of Damascus (دمشق) was once surrounded by extensive fortifications that included walls, towers, and gates in addition to the more imposing Damascus Citadel (قلعة دمشق). Much of these defenses survive intact, often concealed within markets and incorporated into residential buildings. While the city’s fortifications were originally constructed during the Roman period, what remains today largely dates to Seljuq and Ayyubid era reconstructions. …

Damascus – al-Madrasa al-Mershadiyeh
دمشق – المدرسة المرشدية

al-Madrasa al-Mershadiyeh (المدرسة المرشدية) is an Ayyubid-era religious school and mausoleum located in the northern Damascus (دمشق) district of al-Salhiyeh (الصالحية). It was constructed in 1252 in honor of Khadijeh Khatoun (خديجة خاتون), the daughter of Ayyubid ruler al-Maazem Sharaf al-Din Aisa (المعظم شرف الدين عيسى). After her death in 1526, Khadijeh Khatoun (خديجة خاتون) was buried here. The complex is also known as Madrasa …

Damascus – Roman Ruins
دمشق – الآثار الرومانية

Damascus (دمشق) was conquered by the Romans in 64 BCE, which marked the beginning of their long rule over the city. Although the Romans based their administration of Syria in Antioch (modern Antakya, Turkey), there were several substantial building projects undertaken in Damascus (دمشق) during the centuries of Roman rule. These included improvements in city planning, construction of an aqueduct system to bring water from …

Damascus – Church of Saint John of Damascus
دمشق – كنيسة القديس يوحنا الدمشقي

The modest Church of Saint John of Damascus (كنيسة القديس يوحنا الدمشقي) is a Greek Orthodox church dedicated to Youhana Mansour Bin Sarjoun (يوحنا منصور بن سرجون), one of the most important figures of the Eastern Christianity during the Umayyad period. Born to a prominent Christian family in 676, his father was an official responsible for tax collection under the Umayyad caliphate. Saint John of …

Damascus – People
دمشق – شعب

The capital of Syria is one of the most diverse cities in the country and presents a fascinating variety of religious, ethnic and cultural heritage. Historically, the population of Damascus (دمشق) has been predominantly Sunni Muslim since the establishment of the Umayyad caliphate, when mass conversions took place. Despite the city being under control of Shiite rulers during the later Abbasid and Fatimid periods, the …

Aleppo – Old Houses
حلب – البيوت القديمة

One of the major attractions of Aleppo (حلب) is the city’s traditional residential architecture. Throughout the old city and the neighboring historic district of Jdeideh (جديدة) are beautiful residences dating back to the Mamluk and Ottoman periods, and in some instances even earlier. Dozens of these historic buildings had been converted into hotels, cafes, restaurants, and offices in recent decades, providing the opportunity for visitors …

Palmyra – Temple of Bel
تدمر – معبد بل‎

One of the most impressive monuments in Syria is the magnificent Temple of Bel (معبد بل). Located in the southeastern quarter of the ancient city of Palmyra (تدمر), this massive Roman temple complex is one of the best preserved in the Middle East. The site of the temple had been used for religious purposes as far back as 2200 BCE, and as recently as 1929 …

Palmyra – Necropolis
تدمر – مدافن

Surrounding the ancient city of Palmyra (تدمر) is a vast necropolis (مدافن) featuring hundreds of Roman-era tombs, one of the most fascinating aspects of the site to explore. The most remarkable tombs, often constructed for the most prominent residents of the city, feature impressive architecture and detailed funerary art. The wealth and prosperity of this caravan city is reflected in the high quality craftsmanship devoted …

Palmyra – Temple of Baal-Shamin
تدمر – معبد بعلشمين

The Temple of Baal-Shamin (معبد بعلشمين) is one of the most well-preserved temples in the ancient city of Palmyra (تدمر). In Semitic tradition, Baal-Shamin was the “Lord of the Heavens”, responsible for rain and harvest and often equated with the Greek Zeus. Located in the far north of the acropolis, portions of the temple complex date back as early as 17 CE, with numerous phases …