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Prophet Mata Nature Reserve: A Religious, Tourist and un spoilt Nature Destination

The Prophet Mata Mountain natural reserve is one of the most important nature reserves in Syria, where the mountain forest was declared a natural forest reserve pursuant to resolution No. 211 dated 29/9/2009

The nature reserve is located at the coastal mountains of Tartous  province. Thanks to its ecological and biological diversity and charming nature, the reserve enjoys a stunning view and a wonderful climate since its ground is rich with fresh springs, which are the purest in the world.

The forest is about 1100 m above sea level. It is estimated at 650 hectares, of which 450 are artificially afforested since 1976 with a number of forest species including 200 hectares of chestnuts.

The climate is mild in summer and cold in winter with an average annual rainfall of about 1800 mm. It features a number of permanent flux springs while its soil is a homogeneous lime-free sedimentary basaltic.

As a unique artificial forest site, Prophet Mata forest  has been afforested since 1976 with various plant species such as:

Chestnut trees, Conifers of all kinds, Lebanese cedar trees and vertical and horizontal cypress trees.

As for the natural species in this reserve are:  Oaks, Hawthorn, willow, blackberry, fern, in addition to a number of annual and perennial herbs.

Mammals

The forest is home to a variety of wild animals including :

Pigs, Hyenas, the wolf, Jackals, Squirrels, the Hedgehog, the mole and Badger.

Birds

There are several types of beautiful birds, most notably:

Partridge, Blackbird, Quail, Hoopoe, Sparrow, hawk, eagle, the crow, Abu Han, Goldfinch and Abu Zureik.

In addition to all kinds of turtles and reptiles.

Within the reserve at the top of the mountain there is a small building with a six-meter tomb inside.  It is believed to be the tomb of the Prophet Mata, visited by local people to be blessed.

Amal Farhat- Homs

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