The Most Amazing Archaeological Sites in Syria

Syria is known as one of the richest archaeological regions in the world. At the crossroads of Africa, Asia and Europe, the country holds the marks of many of the world's great empires. Syria contains some of the world's most beautiful Roman cities, Apamea and Palmyra, as well as a stunning Crusader-era castle called Krak des Chevaliers. Here are five of the most amazing archaeological sites in Syria.

Krak des Chevaliers
Krak des Chevaliers is a Crusader castle in Syria and one of the most important preserved medieval castles in the world, built by the Hospitalier Knights between 1142 and 1170.The knights were charged with the defense of the Holy Land during the First Crusade.
Mamluk Sultan Baibars seized the castle in 1271, repaired some of the damage and replaced the chapel with a mosque. But the stunningly preserved fortress still looks much as it did in the 13th century.The castle sits atop a 650-metre-high (2,130 ft) hill east of Tartus, Syria.

The oasis city of Palmyra
The oasis city of Palmyra was once at the nexus of trade routes connecting Rome to India, Persia and China. An oasis in the Syrian desert, north-east of Damascus, Palmyra contains the monumental ruins of a great city that was one of the most important cultural centres of the ancient world.
The city is mentioned in the Hebrew Bible and in the annals of the Assyrian kings of the first millennium BC, then it was incorporated into the Seleucid Empire, followed by the Roman Empire which brought a great prosperity to the city. By the second century AD, Palmyra became an important city and was engaged in the protection of the Roman east.

The Citadel of Aleppo
The Citadel of Aleppo is a large medieval fortified palace in the centre of the old city of Aleppo, northern Syria. It is considered to be one of the oldest and largest castles in the world.Subsequently occupied by many civilizations including the Greeks, Byzantines, Ayyubids and Mamluks, the majority of the construction as it stands today is thought to originate from the Ayyubid period.
The citadel is built on top of a natural limestone tell rising some 50 metres above the
level of the surrounding city. Its high walls, imposing entry bridge and great gateway
remain largely intact, and continue to dominate the skyline of the city, a powerful symbol of the city’s heroic past.

The Dead Cities
The Dead Cities are a group of 700 abandoned settlements in northwest Syria between Aleppo and Idlib. Around 40 villages grouped in eight archaeological parks situated in north-western Syria provide an insight into rural life in Late Antiquity and during the Byzantine period.
Most villages which date from the 1st to 7th centuries, became abandoned between the 8th and 10th centuries. The settlements feature the well-preserved architectural remains of dwellings, pagan temples, churches, cisterns, bathhouses etc. Important dead cities include the Church of Saint Simeon Stylites, Serjilla and al Bara.

Roman Amphitheater of Bosra
Roman Amphitheater of Bosra, is the ancient city’s most impressive feature. The amphitheater was built by the Romans in the 2nd century AD, and despite being converted into a fortress by the Ayubids during the Crusades, the original theater has been miraculously preserved.
It can accommodate up to 15,000 spectators and has a stage that is almost 148 feet long and approximately 26 feet deep.The Romans designed the Bosra Amphitheater in such a way that the whole audience can hear the actors without having to use any special equipment.

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