Another sad story occurs in Damascus, the capital city of Syria. Being an old and amazing city is not enough to protect this place from the war. Pretty places in the world are always in danger due to wars. However, it is still cool to include Damascus in our traveling wish list.
Damascus is one of the oldest cities that is continuously inhabited. It is just simply beautiful to see that this world still has the ancient and beautiful cities with the real people living in such places. In 2009, the city has around 1,711,000 population.
The Geographic and Urban Condition of Damascus
The city is in south-western Syria. The land is in the eastern foothills of Anti-Lebanon mountain. Damascus range is approximately 80 km inland. Because of the rain shadow effect, Damascus experiences a semi-arid climate. This place has the ambiance of an extremely ancient city for a reason. This place first settled in the second millennium BC.
Glory era of Damascus started in the era of Umayyad Caliphate from 661 to 750. The city was chosen as the capital of the caliphate kingdom. After that, Abbasi dynasty took the city over and moved the power to Baghdad. The modern city of Damascus covers an area of 105 Km square. 77 km square is the urban area of Damascus.
The city is located on a strategic site. It is on a plateau 680 m above the sea level. The city gets the water supply from Barada River. This place was a strategic place because of the trade routes crosses. The north-south route connects the city with Egypt and Asia Minor.
Meanwhile, the east-west cross connects Lebanon with Euphrat river valley. In the past, Barada River was a source of water supply. Today, the water reduces significantly. Besides, the water is not clean any longer due to pollution and industrial waste.
Damascus has been a metropolis since the 2nd century. It was the Emperor of Septimius Severus who did the upgrade. Damascus is inhabited by people with several different religions. Some of the people are Jews. Some others are Christians. And the majority of Damascus people are Moslems.
The Best Time to Visit Damascus
We need to know the best time to visit a place so bad weather will not disturb our tour. For Damascus, we also need to know whether we are picking a safe time. We need to consider the civil war in the country before leaving. Sometimes, backpackers will love to challenge themselves to go to a place with disputes.
However, it is important to pick the right time. Tourists do not want to struggle with the hardship of a riffle threats during a tour. It is also necessary that tourists know the secure zone. Besides, if it is a place like Damascus, tourists need to know how to behave and get dressed. The country with Moslem majority really appreciate people who choose modest attire.
Damascus has a cold desert climate. This place gets the rain shadow effect. Summers are dry and hot. However, the temperature is still bearable. Meanwhile, the winters are cool and rainy. Snowfall might fall but is infrequent. Rainy season is from October to May. So, the best time to visit Damascus is Between March to June and between September to December.
Things to Do in Damascus
Only from the profile, we can draw a conclusion that Damascus is a city rich in heritage spots. It is one of the oldest cities in the world. Therefore, the city buildings look shabby and precious.
Every side of the city owns the charm of the past era. Besides, this is a city with a long history. There are Islam and non-Islam leaders who conquered the city. That gives good evidence that this is a priceless city across centuries. This place has passed some eras. Today, we can see some ruins of citadels in this very city. Besides, we can still see the wonderful view of the old city.
The rich culture and the humble people are parts of this city strength. We can also visit the Souq to see the wonderful souvenirs and daily life of the locals. We can meet people in the market. Besides, we will be able to view the warmth of the local people. Not to mention the tasty foods that we can enjoy in the traditional shops and market. We can also reveal the real conditions of its politics once we arrived in Damascus.
Leaving for Damascus is already a struggle. Therefore, we need to optimize our tour in this city. Here is the list of things to do in Damascus:
It is recommended that tourists wander around Damascus focusing on the traditional Souq and see the Millenia-old architectures. One of the best destinations the Great Umayyad Mosque. It is a monumental architecture work in Syrian Islamic history. The look is more than impressive. Though this mosque was from the eighth century, we will still see the charm on each of its detail.
The Old City
It is so much stunning to just see the old buildings in the entire place. Yet, we must really visit the Old City. It will not take too long to reach the place. It is only some minutes from Four Seasons Hotel Damascus to go to the Old Walled City.
There are some narrow streets that will make us travel to the past centuries of Damascus history. It has the Roman columns and some religious sites. The spice Souq is in the middle of the place. And we will see mosques and Christian quarter color the old city beautifully.
This is a truly unmissable place in Damascus. It is the house of former Ottoman government that looks more like treasure instead of a residence. The place has the Damascene architecture.
Visiting Damascus will give tourists enrichment and precious experience of Arabic culture. There are traces of histories inside the tourist spots. Besides, we have to see the real appearance of the old city to see the gorgeous trace of its history. And Syria has been awarded as a country to represent Arabic history as well. It is simply worth it to travel to Damascus.