Syria — Things to Do
Syria’s diverse and expansive natural environment is an adrenaline seeker’s playground. There is a plethora of activities in the country catering specifically to travelers with a love for adventure and the outdoors. Whether enjoying one of the country’s many mountains, travelling through the deserts like ancient nomads or poking into ancient history, there are enough possible excursions to keep you busy.
Travelers have their choice of unwinding at local spas and saunas or browsing through one of the thousands of open air markets set up all over Syria during the week and on weekends. Regardless of taste, there is definitely an activity to keep every traveler satisfied.
The Anti-Lebanon Mountains are the perfect place for hiking and trekking excursions. Tour companies like Nawafir Travel and Tours organize trips of every level and orientation in this gorgeous mountain range located in the Southeastern region of the country. Home to some of the region’s highest peaks, the range is a great environment to reconnect with nature.
Travelers should take advantage of Syria’s vast desert region and embark on an authentic desert safari. Many companies organize tours through this arid region, stopping off at major archeological sites along the way and camping underneath the stunning Syrian sky. Tourists looking for a real Middle Eastern adventure need look no further. Such tours can be organized with the regionally popular Egypt Uncovered.
Many people forget that Syria has a coastline that is perfect for scuba diving and snorkeling. Located right on the Mediterranean, Syria’s east coast boasts many local resorts which specialize in water sports. Most popular are snorkeling and scuba diving, but activities like canoeing and kayaking are also on offer. Once again Egypt Uncovered is a reputable local company that is able to organize water trips of varying skill level and intensity.
After a long day of sightseeing there is absolutely no better way to unwind than by soaking in a hammam. A hammam is a traditional word for a sauna and steam bath complex and is one of the most popular recreational activities in the region. Hammams can be found all over the country including the famous Hammam Yalbougha an-Nasry in Aleppo and Hammam az-Zahariyya in Damascus. Most of the hammams also have great massage and body scrub services as well.
There is one activity that travelers should do while in the country and that is go shopping in local souks. Open air markets, or souks as they are known colloquially, are not only the best place to find bargains on sought-after souvenirs, but they are also the perfect place to interact with local Syrians and soak up some of the country’s vibrant culture. There are thousands of souks all over the country, especially in Damascus’ old city, but most of the best markets are located in Aleppo.