Syria (Bradt Travel Guides) Paperback – 28 Jul 2006
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
'A good mix of site information and related background history. Also a very easy read." --Ian Smart - Derbyshire
"Fantastic one of the best I've used. Others in our party kept borrowing it for it s better detail well done!" --Geoff Hewitt, Scotland
"The guide was excellent! I liked the sub sections within the text to explain particular elements of Syrian history or background." --Ann Proffitt - London
About the Author
Fluent Arabic-speaker Diana Darke has more than 30 years' experience in the Middle East and worked as a translator/interpreter for the Omani government. She is the author of Bradt's Syria and North Cyprus.
Top Customer Reviews
West are led to believe about Syria, it is one of the safest and most
welcoming places I have ever been; beautiful, completely unspoilt, steeped
in history - it really is the Cradle of Civilisation. Maybe thanks to all
the adverse publicity, it is completely off the beaten-track, so you can
explore all the incredible sites without the usual coach loads round you. We had the place practically to ourselves. There is no begging or importuning, just friendly curiosity and hospitality, which led in our case to wonderful invitations to visit homes and share food.
The hotel facilities are amazingly in advance of the tourist hordes, so
this really is the time to go and explore the place and get to know the
people - with all the comforts we seem to expect, but without any of
cynicism or exploitation that may alas creep in later.
Diana Darke's new guide is absolutely up-to-date and comprehensive on all
levels. It provides excellent coverage of the basic practicalities of
getting around, accommodation, essential travel information and helpful
advice about the Syrians and the Arabic language. It also offers in depth
information about the history and culture.
Also in a country such as Syria undergoing such rapid change, particularly in the cities, it is already very out of date.
The only problem I had with it is the Authors obvious pro-Syrian view, she constantly praises the government and the country, and in some parts it becomes laughable when compared to other sources of information. In fact its pretty hard to find a negative comment anywhere in the book.
In conclusion I would recommend this book for any traveler hoping to visit Syria, it is the best guide book available, but I would warn them to take the book's opinions with a pinch of salt.
Ms Darke conveys the civility of the people of Syria effectively and introduces us alluringly to the civilizations tempered for millenia in the country.
In some ways this was a perfectly good tool for the job. It seems to cover all one would want covered. I particularly liked the Arabic proverbs which accompany each chapter heading - such advice as Trust in God, but tie your camel, and He who takes a donkey up a minaret must take it down again (though I am not sure what that one means), and It is better to endure the wind of a camel than the prayers of a fish.
Where the guide falls down is in the really bad editing. Neither the author nor the copy editor (if there was such a person) properly read the finished text, so that there are several places where various recensions of the text are just printed one after the other, like the P and Q sources in the book of Genesis, so that you get the same description twice in slightly different words. An example comes in the last paragraph on page 185, at the end of the section on Ugarit.
"Look out near the two temples for a black basalt stone in a triangle shape with three holes, which was an anchor used for tying up ships. Ugarit's gigantic anchors were celebrated. They weighed up to half a tonne each, giving an idea of the size of the ocean-going vessels. There used to be lots of these stones, but most have now been stolen. The whole site has now been fenced to prevent theft which has become a bit of a problem. Look out for a black basalt stone in a triangle with three holes, which was an anchor used for tying up ships. There used to be lots of these stones, but most have now been stolen."
That repetition is annoying and unnecessary.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I bought this guide as research material for a book I'm currently writing, so the fact that it's outdated (and fawning over the dictator Assad, who is currently [June 2013] in the... Read morePublished on 10 Jun. 2013 by Alex
This guide supplied all I required about what to see in Syria and also, just as important, how to behave in a respectful and responsible way. Read morePublished on 15 Mar. 2011 by Mr. Alan J. Ashman
Travelled to Syria for 5 weeks in the summer of 2010. This was the best general guidebook available. Read morePublished on 6 Aug. 2010 by Karmel
I have just returned from a holiday in Syria and took this book with me. It is an excellent guide for the first time visitor to Syria. It is up to date and informative. Read morePublished on 19 Mar. 2010 by Twickenham Green
Whilst I accept that if you are a backpacker on a tight budget this guide lacks all the information one might need, should you be someone in Syria to visit the main sites (and some... Read morePublished on 30 Nov. 2009 by Footsore
The information about the sights is really good but as a practical guide it really offers nothing. It's clearly aimed at the certain type of traveller (one who has all the... Read morePublished on 29 July 2009 by blackrose
The Bradt guide to Syria is not a terrible guide book. In may respects, it is an impressive piece of work, considering the complexities of Syrian history and culture. Read morePublished on 12 Jun. 2009 by Ashmaimis
Before I travel anywhere, the first thing I do is check whether a Bradt guide is available. I've found these guides invaluable whether I'm visiting a country for a few days or... Read morePublished on 14 Jan. 2009 by Tom Locke
this book is very informative and easy to follow. I would have liked to see more colour pictures in it though - that was the only disappointment for me.Published on 3 Sept. 2008 by Book Worm