This ancient city features an exceptionally long Roman street and other classical ruins. In the Byzantine era, it was home to Evagrius the church historian, Theodoret the bishop, and Monophysitism.
This important archaeological site has been called the Pompeii of the Syrian Desert. It was abandoned in the 3rd century and is home to the oldest surviving house-church and synagogue ever found.
Great Mosque of Damascus (Umayyad Mosque)
This historic 7th-century mosque stands on a site that has been sacred since 1000 BC. It has medieval mosaics on the facade and a shrine to John the Baptist inside.
Church of St. Simeon
Qal'a Sim'an is home to the Church of St. Simeon, a well-preserved 5th-century church 60 km from Aleppo. It stands on the site of the pillar of St. Simeon Stylites, a famed hermit monk.
Krak des Chevaliers
This remarkably well-preserved Crusader castle looks almost exactly as it did 800 years ago. T.E. Lawrence called it "the finest castle in the world."
The ruins of Jerada include extensive remains of upper-class houses, a 6-story watchtower and a 5th-century Byzantine cathedral. Column capitals and lintels feature simple geometric designs reminiscent of Visigothic art done in Spain around the same time.
Palmyra was once a great and powerful Roman city, as its impressive ruins attest. Substantial ruins of temples to Bel and Baal can be seen here.
Shrine of Sayidda Zeinab
This is a beautiful Iranian-style mosque and shrine in southern Damascus, housing the tomb of Sayidda Zeinab, daughter of Ali and granddaughter of the Prophet Muhammad. It attracts Shi'a pilgrims from Iran and around the world.