Damascus, capital of Syria

29 April 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  8 minutes

Saladin mouselum tomb © flickr.com - Jan Smith/cc-by-2.0

Saladin mouselum tomb © flickr.com – Jan Smith/cc-by-2.0

Damascus is the capital and largest city of Syria. Aleppo comes in second. It is commonly known in Syria as ash-Sham (Arabic: ash-Shām) and nicknamed as the City of Jasmine (Arabic: Madīnat al-Yāsmīn). In addition to being one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Damascus is a major cultural and religious center of the Levant. The city has an estimated population of 1,711,000 (2009 est.). Located in southwestern Syria, Damascus is the center of a large metropolitan area of 2.6 million people (2004). Geographically embedded on the eastern foothills of the Anti-Lebanon mountain range 80 kilometres (50 mi) inland from the eastern shore of the Mediterranean on a plateau 680 metres (2,230 ft) above sea-level, Damascus experiences a semi-arid climate due to the rain shadow effect. The Barada River flows through Damascus.   read more…

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