Posted by Joshua on Wednesday, January 7th, 2015
From Daniel Demeter
Syria Photo Guide is my attempt to share with the world the immense beauty and rich heritage of the country in which I spent several wonderful years. The website was originally envisioned to serve as a guide for travelers wishing to explore Syria’s incredible range of archaeological, cultural and natural sites, and I began work on the project in 2006. Given the horrific conflict that has engulfed the country since 2011, I hope my website will inspire those working to preserve and protect Syria’s wealth of historic sites and provide a resource for those interested in learning more about Syria’s history and culture.
I first visited Syria in 2003, and quickly found myself becoming deeply immersed in the country’s people, culture and history. Despite having traveled to over thirty countries prior to visiting Syria, nowhere had I encountered people so welcoming and hospitable. The country’s amazing diversity, fascinating history, and incredible variety of archaeological sites and natural attractions amazed me. Having initially planned only a few weeks in the country, I spent over nine months there. I cancelled plans to continue traveling overland through Central Asia to China, instead refocusing my journey on better understanding the Middle East.
In 2006 I undertook another trip to Syria, determined to get to know the country in even greater depth. Basing myself in Bab Sharqi, Damascus, I ended up living in Syria for nearly two full years of 2006 and 2007. In addition to teaching English at a local language center, I spent much of my time visiting, documenting and photographing Syria’s wide range of archaeological, cultural and natural attractions. I contributed articles about these sites to a local English-language magazine called “What’s On”. Through this work, Syria Photo Guide was born. My last visit to Syria was from September 2008 through March 2009. I am from Los Angeles, California and currently reside in San Luis Obispo with my wife, Rasha, who is from Mosul, Iraq.
The website currently features information and photo galleries of 235 sites throughout the country, and a total of over 8,000 high resolution photos. It remains a work in progress, and I anticipate reaching roughly 280 sites and 10,000 photos by the time I complete the project. The website is entirely non-profit and is dedicated to the Syrian people, to whom I will always be indebted for their hospitality, generosity and kindness. Any comments, suggestions or questions are welcome. I will try to address any questions made in the comments on Syria Comment, or by e-mail to email@example.com.
Below is a photo gallery with a selection of some of my favorite images.
– Daniel Demeter