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Syria

SYRIA TRAVEL GUIDE

Syria, officially the Syrian Arab Republic, is a country in Western Asia.

 

From the Euphrates to the Mediterranean, every part of Syria has been touched by history. A land of Biblical tribes, Syria’s most beautiful legends were born where the sand has turned to stone. Home to one of the oldest civilizations in the world, the country has a diverse variety of both historical and archaeological sites, from ruins of the great Greek, Roman and Byzantine Empires, to the legacies of the Nabateans and the Palmyrans, the Crusaders, Marmalukes and Ottoman Turks.

 

Travel to Syria is emphatically discouraged due to an ongoing civil war. Foreigners are at risk of kidnapping, injury or death. The war has caused total destruction of infrastructure, housing, medical facilities, and power and water utilities in many areas.

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  • Capital: Damascus

  • Currency: Syrian Pound (SYP)

  • Area: 185,180 km²

  • Population: 16,91 million (2018)

  • Language: Arabic

  • Religion: Sunni Muslim 74%, Alawite, Druze, and other Muslim sects 16%

  • Electricity: 220V, 50Hz (European plug)

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BEST TIME TO VISIT SYRIA

Syria has a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. The country has four seasons:

  • Spring: March to May - During this time, temperatures start to rise and the weather becomes more pleasant.
  • Summer: June to August - This is the hottest time of year, with temperatures often reaching over 35°C (95°F). It is also the dry season, with very little rainfall.
  • Autumn: September to November - Temperatures start to cool down during this time, and there is more rainfall.
  • Winter: December to February - This is the coolest time of year, with temperatures often dropping below 10°C (50°F). There is also more rainfall during this time.

It's worth noting that the weather can vary depending on the region of the country. For example, the coastal regions tend to have a milder climate than inland areas.

 

It is not safe to travel to Syria at this time and we recommend checking with the U.S. Department of State for the most up-to-date travel advisories and guidelines.

Best Time To Go

SYRIA WEATHER SYNOPSIS

Syria experiences a largely Mediterranean climate. Summers are usually very dry with high evaporation rates. In most parts of the country, summer temperatures tend to exceed 30°C. During the winter, temperatures are moderate to cold. Temperatures are influenced and moderated by proximity to the sea and elevation. The annual average temperature is 18.1°C on the coastal plain and 15.2°C in the mountains.

Syria

SEASONS AT A GLANCE

Most destinations have different times of the year when they’re more or less popular with tourists. 

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Peak Season

Shoulder Season

Off Peak Season

JANUARY

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FEBRUARY

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MARCH

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APRIL

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MAY

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JUNE

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JULY

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AUGUST

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SEPTEMBER

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OCTOBER

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NOVEMBER

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DECEMBER

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HOT MONTHS:

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MODERATE MONTHS:

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SNOW SPORT IN SYRIA

HIKING & CYCLING IN SYRIA

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KITESURF IN SYRIA

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TRAVEL SAFETY IN SYRIA

Always consider the current safety risk of each destination and do not travel without travel / medical insurance. For the latest travel health notices and recommended precautions click

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Travel Safety

HEALTH RISKS IN SYRIA

Be aware of possible health risks in 

Syria

Yellow fever - The yellow fever virus is found in tropical and subtropical areas of Africa and South America. The virus is spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito. There is no medicine to treat or cure an infection. To prevent getting sick from yellow fever, use insect repellent, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants, and get vaccinated.

Zika Virus - Zika is spread mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. These mosquitoes bite during the day and night. Zika can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus. Infection during pregnancy can cause certain birth defects. There is no vaccine or medicine for Zika.

Malaria - Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease caused by a parasite that commonly infects a certain type of mosquito which feeds on humans. People who get malaria are typically very sick with high fevers, shaking chills, and flu-like illness. Although malaria can be a deadly disease, illness and death from malaria can usually be prevented.

Dengue - Dengue is spread mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. These mosquitoes bite during the day and night. About one in four people infected with dengue will get sick. For people who get sick with dengue, symptoms can be mild or severe.

SYRIA TRAVEL COSTS

Due to the ongoing conflict and civil war in the country it is not safe to travel to Syria at this time.

Cost & Spending

SYRIA TRAVEL TIPS

Travel Tips

SIGHTS & HIGHLIGHTS OF SYRIA

Syria is divided into 14 governorates, which are further divided into smaller administrative divisions. Here is a list of the main regions of Syria and some highlights of each:

  • Aleppo Governorate - This region is home to the country's largest city, Aleppo, which is known for its ancient citadel and the souks (marketplaces) in the Old City.

  • Al-Hasakah Governorate - This region is located in the northeast of the country and is known for its agricultural fields and oil production.

  • Ar-Raqqah Governorate - This region is located in the north of the country and is known for its ancient ruins, including the city of Raqqa, which was an important center of the Islamic empire.

  • As-Suwayda Governorate - This region is located in the south of the country and is known for its Druze population and the city of As-Suwayda, which is known for its Roman ruins.

  • Deir ez-Zor Governorate - This region is located in the east of the country and is known for its oil production and ancient ruins, including the city of Deir ez-Zor, which was an important center of the Islamic empire.

  • Daraa Governorate - This region is located in the south of the country and is known for its ancient ruins, including the city of Bosra, which was an important center of the Roman empire.

  • Hama Governorate - This region is located in the west of the country and is known for its ancient ruins, including the city of Hama, which is known for its traditional water wheels.

  • Homs Governorate - This region is located in the center of the country and is known for its ancient ruins, including the city of Palmyra, which was an important center of the Roman empire.

  • Idlib Governorate - This region is located in the northwest of the country and is known for its agriculture and the city of Idlib, which is known for its ancient citadel.

  • Latakia Governorate - This region is located in the west of the country and is known for its Mediterranean beaches and the city of Latakia, which is known for its ancient citadel.

  • Quneitra Governorate - This region is located in the south of the country and is known for its ancient ruins, including the city of Quneitra, which was an important center of the Roman empire.

  • Rif Dimashq Governorate - This region is located in the south of the country and is home to the capital city, Damascus, which is known for its ancient souks and the Umayyad Mosque.

  • Tartus Governorate - This region is located in the west of the country and is known for its Mediterranean beaches and the city of Tartus, which is known for its ancient citadel.

  • Al-Raqqah Governorate - This region is located in the north of the country and is known for its ancient ruins, including the city of Raqqa, which was an important center of the Islamic empire.

Highlights
What To See & Do
Travel Map

Syria has a rich history and culture, and there are many interesting things to see and do when visiting the country. Some top attractions include:

  • The Ancient City of Palmyra: An ancient city located in the Homs Governorate, known for its well-preserved ruins of Roman and Greek temples, amphitheaters, and tombs.
  • The Old City of Aleppo: A UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the Aleppo Governorate, known for its ancient citadel and the souks (marketplaces) in the Old City.
  • The Umayyad Mosque: A mosque located in the capital city, Damascus, known for its architectural beauty and historical significance.
  • The Ancient City of Bosra: An ancient city located in the Daraa Governorate, known for its well-preserved Roman theater.
  • The Ancient City of Raqqa: An ancient city located in the Al-Raqqah Governorate, known for its well-preserved ruins of Islamic-era buildings.
  • The Ancient City of Deir ez-Zor: An ancient city located in the Deir ez-Zor Governorate, known for its well-preserved ruins of Islamic-era buildings.
  • The Ancient City of Quneitra: An ancient city located in the Quneitra Governorate, known for its well-preserved Roman ruins.

Aside from visiting historical sites, you can also try traditional Syrian cuisine, visit local markets and craft fairs, go hiking in the countryside, or visit the Mediterranean beaches in the Latakia and Tartus governorates. It's worth noting that the availability of certain attractions and activities may vary depending on the region of the country you are in.

Syria
What To Eat

WHAT TO EAT IN SYRIA

WHAT TO EAT IN SYRIA

Syria has a rich culinary tradition with a variety of dishes and ingredients. Some popular foods to try when visiting the country include:

  • Kebabs: Grilled meat skewers that are often served with rice or pita bread.
  • Shawarma: Thin slices of meat (usually chicken, lamb, or beef) that are cooked on a spit and served in a pita with vegetables and sauce.
  • Fattoush: A salad made with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and toasted pieces of pita bread.
  • Hummus: A dip made from chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, and garlic.
  • Baba ghanoush: A dip made from roasted eggplant, tahini, and spices.
  • Falafel: Fried balls or patties made from ground chickpeas or fava beans, often served in a pita with vegetables and sauce.
  • Ma'amoul: Small, shortbread pastries filled with dates, nuts, or other sweet fillings.
  • Knafeh: A dessert made from shredded phyllo dough, cheese, and syrup.

You can also try various Syrian teas, such as mint tea or red tea, which are often served with traditional meals. It's worth noting that the availability of certain foods may vary depending on the region of the country you are in.

LGBTQ IN SYRIA

Syria

WHERE TO STAY IN SYRIA

It's important to note that due to ongoing conflict and security concerns, travel to Syria is highly discouraged and many hotels may not be operational or safe for tourists. However, if the situation were to change in the future and tourism resumes, here are some areas and accommodation suggestions:


Where To Stay In Damascus:

Damascus is the capital city of Syria, known as one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, offering a blend of ancient history, bustling souks, and architectural wonders like the Umayyad Mosque.

  • Budget Accommodation: Consider staying at Beit Al-Mamlouka for affordable rooms and a central location near Damascus' historic Old City and major attractions.

  • Mid-range Accommodation: The Talisman Hotel provides comfortable accommodations with traditional Syrian decor and easy access to Damascus' markets and cultural sites.

  • Luxury Accommodation: Opt for the luxurious ambiance of the Four Seasons Hotel Damascus, featuring upscale rooms, multiple dining options, and views of the city.

Best Value Tip: Visit Damascus during the offseason (October to April) for better accommodation rates and fewer tourists, while still enjoying pleasant weather and cultural experiences.


Consider traveling with a reputable tour operator for safety and local insights, and always check travel advisories and entry requirements before planning your trip to Syria.


Please note that the situation in Syria is volatile, and travel to the country is not recommended due to safety concerns. It's essential to stay updated on travel advisories and consult with relevant authorities before planning any trips to Syria.

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