Syria 's beaches are ideal for holiday makers

The Syrian coast that stretches between the sea and green mountains is ideal for holiday makers. These mountains are mostly covered with pine and oak trees, and their slopes touch the shores.  This landscape holds a visitor 's breath from Raas al-Basit in the north to Tartous in the South, on the mountainous  villages  and towns scattered with springs of clear mineral  waters.

The Syrian sea-shore is about 175 Km long, and its series of continuous beaches are distinguished by soft sand, unpolluted waters, moderate climate and fertile lands of fresh fruits and vegetables. As a city, Lattakia is Syria 's main sea- port on the Mediterranean. It has retained its importance since ancient times, as it was one of the  five cities built by Selecus in the 2nd century B.C. and was named after his mother " Laudetia".

Lattakia is the sea gate to Syria. It has first class accommodation, and is well-placed as a base from which to explore the Coastal regions of the country.There are beaches, mountains, archeological sites and many relics speaking of glorious ancient civilization.

Raas  Shamra is Lattakia 's main monument. It is 16 Km north of Lattakia. It is the site of Ugarit, the kingdom, where  a golden past of administration, education, diplomacy, law, religion and  economics  between the 16th and 13th centuries B.C. flourished. It is the Kingdom which offered humanity the first alphabet  in the world. Statues, documents  and jewels belonging  to the glorious Kingdom of Ugarit are on display at  Lattakia, Aleppo  and Tartous museums.

The nearest coastal town to Lattakia is Jableh, 28Km to the south. It has a theatre of 8,000 seats. Close to Jableh  is Tell Sokas, where archeological relics were discovered.

Besides  its important economic position, Lattakia has considerable tourist potentials. There are beaches, mountains,  archeological sites and many relics, giving evidences on once a prosperous civilization. Moreover, the most interesting excursions from Lattakia are onto the mountains and valleys to the east and south east of the city.

The valley of Nahr al-Kabir river is almost Alpine in feeling only a few kilometers inland from the sea, and there , the road along this river valley flows to meet another tributary at al-Haffee district, where there is a turning  for the Salah Eddine Castle and then to the " charming holiday center", in the woods at Slunfeh and then to its neighboring Summer resorts on the mountains : Salma which is  only 12 Km from Slunfeh and 800 meters  above the sea level.

Syria 's coastal  Summer resorts are numerous, scattered on the hills and mountains near the sea, they boast fresh air, cool weather in Summer  and moderate weather in  Winter. And of these lovely resorts  is  Slunfeh which  is 50 Km east of Lattakia and 1200 meters  above sea level.  Slunfeh 's rival in natural beauty and oak trees woods is Kasab which is 65 Km north of Lattakia. It is located on the Aqra mountain amongst woods, 800 meters above  sea level. The road that leads to Kasab runs amidst woods, overlooking  most beautiful scenery of Syria 's  best natural beauty. The road to Kasab runs through woods and meadows of wild flowers and plants and groves of olive and vine, orchards of apple trees, leading  to the beautiful forest of Frulloq.

Raas al-Basit, however,  is Lattakia 's main resorts. It is 60 Km north of the city, by Antioch road for 42 Km, then left long a road climbing  through forests . Raas al-Basit is to become  the great popular, and at the same time, international, sea-side, resort, as the road from Lattakia to this resort is a delight in itself. After driving  through some  forty kilometers amidst-rich plantation rising  in two or three terraces from the roadside, carefully kept and ingeniously irrigated, the traveler enters the area of forests . And there, the visitor goes north. There are the forests up there.  And once over a small pass, the Raas al-Basit  road suddenly opens out to an unexpected and pleasant landscape: the forest all at once gives place to fields of cereal crops  enclosing a vast stretch of water. A deep blue lake like a precious stone set against a background of green and gold, that is the lake of Ballouran.

Beyond,  the  road drops rapidly  through a valley  and comes to a stop at the water 's edge . T the left, a sandy path leads towards a promontory, whereas the right hand side path of refreshment bars goes off to connect the bathing  resort with the Summer Resort of Kassab.


Tomader Fateh