Syria is situated at the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea. It is a land of rolling plains, fertile river valleys, and barren deserts.
Syria is an extremely ancient land with a rich cultural heritage. Some of the oldest known civilizations existed in this region, and one of the world’s first alphabets was developed there. Syrian artists and scholars greatly influenced the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome and the later culture of the Muslim empire.
The whole country is a historian’s delight. Crusader castles, fortresses, amphitheatres and the remains of cities are scattered across the rocky sand.
There are forested areas and thanks to innovative irrigation programmes, green areas and cotton fields around the Euphrates. Syria also has beaches for more traditional sun, sea and sand activities; the best are located near Latakia on the country’s short Mediterranean coastline.
Syria can be divided into three main land regions. They are, from west to east: the coast, the mountains, and the valleys and plains.
On the coast temperatures average about 48 °F (9 °C) in January and about 81 °F (27 °C) in July. The mountains the temperatures average about 41 °F (5 °C) in January and about 72 °F (22 °C) in July, and in the valleys and plains the temperatures average about 41 °F (5 °C) in January and about 88 °F (31 °C) in July.
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO
POPULATION: 19.7 million
LANGUAGE: Arabic, Kurdish, Armenian
CURRENCY: Syrian Pound
ELECTRIC CURRENT: 220V, 50Hz. To power any electrical item an international adapter or two pin plug is required.
COUNTRY CODE: SY
COUNTRY DIALLING CODE: +963
TIME ZONE: GMT/UTC +2
There is a general threat from terrorism. Attacks cannot be ruled out and could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by foreign travellers. Developments in the region may trigger public unrest. You should take care to avoid demonstrations, which can turn hostile, and be particularly vigilant in public places.
Information provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK www.fco.gov.uk