Syria Travel Guide
As of early 2019, Syria appears to prepare to welcome tourists again. Some of the below information may change as it is based on the pre-conflict days.
Before you go: Obtaining a visa was necessary for all visitors prior to entering Syria. Before the current conflict, this was an easy process. As early 2019, it is possible however I’m unsure if it is even possible to obtain a tourist visa nowadays.
Accommodation: Accommodation in Syria varies from the very basic to the opulent. I found the best value to be the small guesthouses that are dotted across the country – these usually provide one with private facilities and breakfast. However, due to the current armed conflict, it is difficult to know which accommodation is still available, so I am not able to provide any recommendations.
Food: Syria has probably the best food in the Middle East. It is cheap and good quality. Shwarmas were of particularly good quality, and I loved the way the Syrians cooked their roast chicken over an open flame. Minced lamb dishes were also a delight to devour. For those who prefer sweet dishes, try the halawat al-jibn in Hama, a soft pastry filled with an equally soft cheese, drowned in syrup and served hot. The most delicious meal I have ever consumed. Being in the Middle East, one can savour a sheesha afterwards – and one can choose from different flavours (I loved the strawberry).
Transport: Buses are the most common form of transportation around Syria. Homs is a major transport hub that is at the crossroads between the main north-south road and west-east road. These are very reasonably priced, and the road conditions are generally excellent. For visiting some of the tourist sites, it may be easier to use a taxi – so try to find others to share with to keep down costs.
Safety: Syria is in the final stages of protracted armed conflict, and the country is prepared to again welcome tourists.
Overall, Syria is a safe and extremely welcoming country to visit, though there may still be pockets where tension and conflict still occurs. You must research the latest information prior to any visit. However, it appears that some major tourist areas (including Krak des Chevaliers, Aleppo and Damascus) are all stable.
If you wish to visit Syria, it is important to read the following information: