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Five Thousand Archaeological Sites in Homs

 Homs, (ST) - The city of Homs embraces about five thousand archaeological sites that were the result of dozens of civilizations that followed the region to give it the qualities of diversity and wealth.

Just like many of the Syrian provinces, Homs the central province, enjoys a wide natural, cultural and archeological diversity as it contains about five thousand archaeological sites.

The archaeological sites in Homs, according to Eng. Ahmed Akash, director of tourism bureau in the province, represent thirty-three successive civilizations, indicating that these sites include markets, khans, traditional handicrafts shops and ancient homes that represent unique tourist destinations that will help to achieve economic and cultural revival, stressing the importance of restoring sites threatened by the risk of deterioration and paying more interest for providing tourism services in these sites.

Natural Tourist Destinations Surround Damascus

Damascus is the oldest capital still inhabited in the world. It was inhabited by the Amorites and the Canaanites. The Aramites established the kingdom of Aram in Damascus. Later the kingdom was invaded by the Pharaohs, the Assyrians, the Caledonians, and the Persians, then by the Greeks, the Romans, and the Byzantines. The Arab Nabateans founded their kingdom in Damascus.

The Islamic Abbasids, Tolonians, Ikhshidis, Fatimids, Seleucids, Atabeghs, Ayyoubids and Memlouks ruled Damascus respectively. The city stood solid and united against the siege of the Franks who couldn’t conquer it,

Preparations to Start Tourist Season in Lattakia Underway

LATTAKIA, (ST)- Preparations are underway to start this year's tourist season in the Syrian province of Lattakia. Within this framework, the National Association for Tourism Development in Syria in cooperation with Lattakia’s municipality council have recently launched a voluntary youth initiative aiming to rehabilitate and restore some famous tourist and ancient places in the province.

Shedding light on this initiative Syriatimes e-newspaper interviewed Mrs. Sahar Hmaisheh , the executive director of the association. She said "Lattakia is a famous Syrian tourist destination that enjoys diverse landscape, unique historical heritage and key tourism elements."

She underscored that the initiative aims at spreading and enhancing the culture of tourism due to its key role in supporting national economy. It also aims at raising awareness about the importance of natural and architectural heritage and at protecting tourism and archeological sites.

Damascus...A Blend of History and Tourism

Syria is floating on a lake of artifacts. In alHasaka (alJazira) alone there are more than 1500 archaeological sites. To continue, we can mention uncountable sites in the south; in the Golan, in Hauran, in alSweidaa, and in the north; in Aleppo, and Idleb, and in the East; in Palmyra, Deir Ezzor and alRaqqa, and also in the west ; in Lattakia, Jableh and Tartous. Damascus might be the capital of all these archaeological and historical sites. It is not only the oldest living town on earth, but it is the only living museum in the Globe. What increases the element of excitement in the Umayyad's capital is that the greatest artifacts are still buried underground, although some of them, emerge , from time to time, so that our eyes can see them, our minds assimilate them but our imagination can not behold them.

In a special study, issued by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs, (now the Ministry of Housing), Mohammad Abul Faraj alUch, the late researcher and director of historical documents in the General Directorate of Archaeology & Museums narrated a story he had heard from an elder cousin, that when he was a child he used to, with some of his mates, to infiltrate through a hole in a basement of a house between Bab al Jabia and Souk Madhat Pacha, to go down into a large dark space, and a road lined with broken columns laid on the ground. The children used to walk hundreds of steps to a point believed to be under the present alBuzouria Souk. Mr. alUch recalls that the Roman Senate was located in this place opposite al Buzouriah Souk where as the Roman theater was in the place of the present Tailor's Souk, on the right side of the Straight Street which is believed to be one meter under the present   (Madhat Pacha Street).

SOS Chrétiens d’Orient’ Director General: Syria is safe for tourists

Last Tuesday, a foreign delegation composed of 35 persons from Canada, France and Switzerland arrived in Syria for 8 days. The goal of the visit? Tourism.

It was the first visit to Syria for the most part of the group since the beginning of the terror war on the country in 2011, according to the Director General of SOS Chrétiens d’Orient Mr. Benjamin Blanchard, who emphasized that the tourist group was very surprised to see that Syria is still alive.

Mr. Blanchard has told the Syria Times e-newspaper that few of the tourist group’s members have visited Syria many times since 2015 with SOS Chrétiens d’Orient or with the travel agency Odeia, but it is the first tourist group to visit Bosra [Palmyra] after liberating it from terrorists.

“The group are very surprised