Syria is home to one of the oldest and richest cultures in the world and offers the independent traveller a wide range of exciting and multi layered experiences. In Globe Trekker Syria we follow Presenter Holly Morris as she explores some of the countries most famous sites and cities and delves beneath the surface to discover a culture of time honoured tradition and a people full of warmth and hospitality.
Holly begins her journey in Syria's second largest city, the ancient trading centre of Aleppo. Once a key stop on the silk and spice routes between Asia and the West, Aleppo is steeped in history and oozes atmosphere and charm. Holly checks into the one of the cities most famous landmarks, the once grand Baron Hotel. With a guest list that includes many notables and dignitaries such as the mystery writer Agatha Christie and T.E Lawrence (aka Lawrence of Arabia), the hotel provides plenty of inspiration and a perfect base for exploring the city.
After a visit to Aleppo's ancient markets, some of the largest in the Arab world, and the impressive Citadel, which contains the remains of over 5000 years of history, Holly heads out of town on a day trip to see the awe inspiring Greco-Roman city of Apamea and some of the oldest Christian ruins in the world known as the Dead Cities.
Holly then boards a train into Syria's lush coastal mountains to visit two of the most impressive Crusader castles ever built, Saladin's Castle and Krak de Chevalier, before heading south to the country's capitol city, Damascus.
Despite it's ancient origins Damascus is fast paced, exciting and in many ways presents the modern face of Syria. After touring the legendary Old City and visiting the stunning Umyyad Mosque, one of the oldest mosques in the world, Holly is eager to get a taste of contemporary Syrian life and takes up an offer to attend one of the glitziest show biz events in the Middle East, the Adonia TV Drama Awards. Undergoing a full blown Syrian make-over complete with big hair and false eyelashes our normally down to earth Holly is transformed into a Arabian diva and has an unforgettable night of fun and glamour Middle Eastern style.
For the final leg of her journey Holly heads east into the Syrian desert to the legendary desert oasis of Palmyra. Considered by many to contain some of the most impressive ancient Roman remains in the world, Palmyra's antiquity, mystique and breath taking desert landscape provide the perfect backdrop for Holly to conclude her journey.
Beautiful, exotic, mind bogglingly ancient, and full of surprises, Holly's experience in Syria is nothing short of awe inspiring. Her advice? Get there quick before the secret is out.