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Rabah: The Charming Green Hill

The further sightseers tour al-Nadarah Valley villages, the more they are fascinated by the green mountains, plains, and valleys. As well as they are charmed by flowing springs, streams, rivers, and lakes formed after winter heavy rains and snow. In summer, The mild weather during the day becomes cooler at night, even in the hottest days. The magnificent high mountains, make (Rabah) one of the most beautiful villages where the visitor enjoys the beauty of green nature.

Despite the fact that reaching  the village is  feasibly dangerous via zigzagging and narrow roads, but the moment of arriving this wonderful village will remove the trip’s troubles especially when the guest eyes fall on vineyards and apple orchards.

Rabah is located on the top of a  mountain called al-Hilo (Sweet) Mount  to the west of Homs, at an altitude of 1100 meters above sea level.

To reach the al-Hilo Mountain, which overlooks on the outskirts of the Syrian coast, you have to pass by a thick forest of pine, cypress and chestnut trees. Taking  promenades through those knotted forests blocking the sun's rays from passersby is considered as an incredible experience.

Despite Rabah houses modern construction, yet the inhabitants still use some old construction materials such as natural stones and bricks.

At summer time, Rabah become a grand center for various touristic festivals organized by its societies, with the participation of  migrant  families  and visitors from Syria and the world. One of  the most famous  festivals , is the “Feast of Our Lady” which takes place on the 14th of August each year .

The village’s people are famous for their scientific and academic excellence in addition to their  generosity, kindness and hospitality towards visitors.

Amal  Farhat

Mary, Immortal Civilization

An everlasting story contributing to the building of the human civilization. In August, 1933 while a group of Bedouins were burying a dead body, they found a statue of a nude person, headless body with hands over chest weighing about 300 kg on which they found a cuneiform engraving.

  Mary dynasty spanned over one hundred and thirty-six years. The kingdom of Mary witnessed a colossal prosperity. There were a lot of palaces and many places for worship in addition to sculptures which reflected the presence of art school in Mesopotamia. Mary was part of the Arab people of the Amorites.

Mary, the tenth city, was built after the flood. The people of Mary was part of al-Amorites who established Mary kingdom to be their capital. Al-Amorites had an important historical role in Der-Ezour for its  historical and geographical location.

Excavation targeted the homes in Mary, temples and palaces which were built by kings for the sake of the Gods they worshipped.

Mary's palace was named "ziemeri leem," one of the most important discoveries in Tel-Hariri.

Therewere two statues in the palace : the first was called (Ishnoub Ieloum ) and the other represented the (spring), These two statues are exhibited in Aleppo museum today besides a cluster of decorations which prevailed in the Middle Euphrates.

The religion of Mary Kingdom was based on the glorification of water in the Euphrates, and for this reason there was the Goddess of springs called "Ashtar."

Lions were the best animals for the Godess Ashtar, and her symbol.

 Mary's library comprised twenty five thousand cuneiform clay plates.it dates back to the Seventeenth and eighteenth centuries BC.

Palaces in the kingdom of Mary were built adjacent to the temples to be nearer to Gods and worshipping.

F. al-Taleb

T&E : H.SH 

Al- Rukama

Al Rukama is one of the  biggest villages south eastern Homs .The village history date back to the Roman era.

It is called Rukama after a historical hill  in the town, other sources  say the name came after  Numbered plates dated to Roman period. However, the villagers  believe that the name came from the old deep  and mound well.

The village is characterized by its archeological hill dating back to second half of  the third millennium BC, the hill reaches a height of 20 meters and extends over an area of 500 square meters.

The Directorate Antiquities and Museums' director, engineer Fareed  Jaboor, said a collection of Pottery findings were found in  indication to  excavations halts currently because of the present situation.

In spite of  the archaeologies , the people of the village, which reaches 25 thousands, work in farming fruitful trees especially  grapes, almonds, and olives .

N.H.Khider  

Talkalkh: City of Splendor

   Due to its charming green nature and fascinating climate, Talkalkh become visitors, tourists and travel lovers interface. It was named after “Alkalkh” plant which is famous and widely spread in this region; but died out as a  result of massive fire breaking out the hill when bombed by Allies planes.

   Talkalkh Located at the foot of a northern rough basaltic hill overlooking Homs was initially on Tripoli itinerary; about 45 kilometers away from Homs and one of the largest administrative areas, where a large number of districts and towns are affiliated to. It was actually founded during the French occupation of Syria, when the French mandate abolished the government administration of Al-Hoson castle moving it to Talkalkh at a special building “al-Saraya” which is still standing. It is characterized by distinctive palaces built with basaltic carved stones and  its stairs-like homes which are built on the hill.

It a city also famous for  breeding Arabian horses. The French named the city's horses “crack” due to their speed and agility. The horse image adorning the Syrian currency is Talkalkh people proudness as it represent a  Talkalkhian horse, being the most beautiful one in the region at that time. For that reason French soldiers took it with them to France after evacuation.

For a long time the hill was a gathering site for Arab tribes. Talkalkh people heroic history started when they bravely fought against the French occupation; when in December 1919 French  forces insisted on raising the French flag up the Government House “al-Saraya” since it was affiliated to the coastal zone, which was occupied by France. Whereas, Talkalkh inhabitants vowed to join their city and its rural surroundings to the state. Therefore, several clashes arose between residents and French forces. The people's struggle against the occupation forces continued until early 1920, where the French troops forced the rebel leaders to move to Homs and Damascus.

In the past, the city’s people used to drink from the  widely spread fresh water springs  such as: “Pasha” spring and springs of “Um Ali’ and “al-Jarab”. In addition to “Almtarb” (glee) spring, so- called for the joy and gladness given by musicals  held next to.

Thanks to the city's fascinating nature, a number of tourist services , restaurants and parks were established in various regions of Talkalkh.

Amal Farhat

Al-Mzieneh : Wonderful Scenery

Al-Mzieneh is one of the most beautiful areas of al-Nadarah Village in Homs. It is  located on the foot of a mountain overlooking the fertile plain of Beki'a. It is about 10 kilometers  away from al-Krak des Chevaliers (Hoson Castle).

More than 4,000 inhabitants live in the village, whereas a great number of  its people used to emigrate to earn living . Their oldest emigration was to Brazil in 1887.

Education sector in the village has received special interest  since the early beginning of the twentieth Century. In 1915, a Russian school was opened  in the village. Teaching  in this school  was  in Arabic. Later the school was turned into an official school during the French mandate in 1921. A large number of educated people graduated from this school. In 1952, Alhosniah school was opened with the contribution of the village people.  The school was moved later to al-Hawash village. Then an official secondary school was opened in 1962.  A large number of educated, university professors and specialists in scientific research, doctors and engineers graduated from this school.

 The main economic activities of Al-Mzieneh people  depend on the cultivation of olives, grapevines, citrus and some winter crops such as wheat and barley. A dam, known as al-Mzeineh dam, was built in the village in 2003 with a capacity of 19 million cubic meters of water.

Amal Farhat