Luxury Syria Tours

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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Exploring a country full of hospitality and the striking ruins of a succession of empire builders is what you'll be doing with your time on luxury Syria tours. Cultural cuisine includes khoobz Arabi (unleavened bread), falafel, shwarma (spit-cooked sliced lamb), rice, pine nuts, and foul (a paste of fava beans, garlic, and lemon). Syria is predominately Muslim, which means that pork and alcohol will be to some degree conspicuous by their relative absence.

Sights to Savor on Luxury Syria Tours

The oasis town of Palmyra was a strategic point along the ancient Silk Road from China to the Mediterranean. An important stop on luxury Syria tours, Palmyra today is a quiet town in a vast empty stretch of desert. Most of its ruins date back only 1,800 years. Founded during the Assyrian empire circa 1400 BC and conquered by the Romans in 271, Palmyra burnt to the ground two years afterwards and was finished by an earthquake in 1089.

Syria's capital of Damascus is one of the world's oldest continuously occupied cities, with a history reaching back some 7,000 years. A jewel of Islamic architecture that has survived despite Mongol invasions, earthquakes, Crusaders, and 19th-century fires, Damascus is an important item on the itinerary of luxury Syria tours. Either in the city or near it are numerous gems, from Saladin's garden-encircled mausoleum, built in 1193, to one of Syria's loveliest mosques, Takiyya as-Suleimaniyya, south of the Barada River.

One of Syria's more delightfully quiet towns is Hama, situated midway between Damascus and Aleppo on the Orontes River. Its charm comes in large part from the groaning ancient stone water wheels built centuries ago and working today. From the Krak de Chevaliers (a splendid and intact Crusader castle guarding the only mountain pass between Turkey and Lebanon) to the black basalt walls of Bosra to the dead cities around Aleppo, Syria will be a memory to savor for years.

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