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hieronyma Aleppo - A travel report by Christl
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Aleppo,  Syria - flag Syria -  ‘alab
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hieronyma's travel reports

Aleppo, Syria, a journey into another world

  20 votes
Page: 1 2
Syria with its small mediterranian coastline, surrounded by Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, Israel, and Lebanon, is called one of the evil regimes, but the impression you get as a traveller is different: It is a proud, safe, polite, and friendly country.


Aleppo Castle, Syria, View fom my hotel
Aleppo Castle, Syria, View fom my hotel
Expression of power is the ctadelle of Aleppo. Nobody knew the emperor, the faceless, because in throne room the light blinded the guests, they weren't able to make out his face. Fear was the basis of his power, he was able to go around town unrecognised and to find out what his people thought of him. From the plateau of the huge defensework the view of the wide stretched town, hazy in the smog, is impressive. Nearly hidden the small mosque with its quiet yard and the shadowy tree is a place of contemplation. Diligently and strenously people excavate the past and install the modern age, the amphitheater, pleasing, simple. Below the citadelle in the men's café the woman traveller smokes a waterpipe unmolested. Waklking the Christian quarter the visitor enjoys the old houses and small places. The Khan al-Wazir is lively as in old times, when the entrance was guarded by custom officers. Having given satisfaction to their demands, the traveller found accomodation, storerooms, stables, also a mosque, a synagoge, a church. What must he have had to tell of the trouble and the dangers of the journey, of sandstorms, of glaring sun and cold nights, of bandits, of illness and death! Visiting the Umayyad Mosque the visitor finds the believer and his plea in misery at the grave of Zacharias.

Favourite spots:
Qala'at Samaan, Syria, the rest of the column
Qala'at Samaan, Syria, the rest of the column
North of Aleppo on a plateau, visible from far away, lies the Qalaat Seman, the monastery of St. Simeon, the stylite, who forty years of his life lived and preached on a column, chained to it, that he didn't fall of, the remnants are still to be seen. And he was listened to - crowds of pilgrims came from all over the world. That shows the layout, four basilicas, one served as a church, three for the reception of the pilgrims. A quiet place, where time seems to have come to a standstill. Below the plateau in the small garden restaurant the host sings an old lied and talks about his life, a kind man who gave his life sense. To the West of Aleppo, Apameia, one of the four key towns of the Seleucids, looks over the Al-Ghab plain as in the 3rd century. Coming through the Antioch Gate, the view opens on to the cardo with its double row of high, elaboratly decorated columns of gray granite with those covered shopping streets to both sides. What splendor!

What's really great:
El--Bara, Syria, Dead City, tomb
El--Bara, Syria, Dead City, tomb
A hot day in Serjilla, one of the Dead Cities, a strange and weird sight: An abandoned, ruined town, tidied up and well kept, with a bath house and a taverne, a men's meeting place and a church, villas and private homes with carefully chiselled fronts and, not to forget, a field of very lively olive trees, waiting to be harvested. The inhabitants seem just to have gone away, but they left the place 1500 years ago. Christians of the Eastern Orthodox Church they have been and remaind Christians when the Islam arrived, and El-Bara, vast, overgrown, but used, the olive trees well kept and guarded. Between the ruins of old times a monastery appears, the house of the olive press is opened, cool and big. A towering pyramid, an old grave, demands respect. The inner room is high, the sarcophagus impressive, the stone medaillons are still profound: The fleur-de-lis, the sign of peace, and the letters, which reveal the name of Christ.

Accommodations:
Amir Palace, Tel.: 00963-21-2214800, a clean hotel with good food, centrally situated.

Other recommendations:
Aleppo, Syria, Suq, Dresses
Aleppo, Syria, Suq, Dresses
The offer in the Suq is overwhelming, specially when you want to know what kind of dresses women wear under their long coats. Nobody molests the customer, the shopkeepers are self-confident and attentive, know the value of their goods and don't need to run after the potential buyer.

Published on Friday January 21th, 2005


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Mon, Jan 08 2007 - 07:51 PM rating by mrscanada

I always wanted to visit Syria

Tue, Jan 25 2005 - 05:46 AM rating by ravinderkumarsi

nicely written
add pic to make it more interesting

Mon, Jan 24 2005 - 05:56 AM rating by esfahani

Danke für den Report - ich schwelgte soeben in Erinnerungen an meine eigene Reise durch Syrien...
Keine Bilder? - Gerne kann ich welche zur Verfügung stellen!
LG Ralph

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