The recent news of ISIS seizing Palmyra made me think back to my own trip there, when circumstances in Syria were very different. I studied in Syria for about a year from 2004 to 2005, and I visited Palmyra in the spring of 2005.
I don't remember exactly how long my bus ride there was from Damascus, where I was living, but it was certainly a number of hours. Palmyra's ruins were considered a "must see" in Syria despite their distance from the major cities, and, as might be expected, a good number of the people there made their living on tourism. There are a lot of wonderful sites for both locals and visitors to see all over Syria, but this was the only place I visited in the country where restaurant owners routinely brought out guest books for me to sign. It was also the only place where I saw a restaurant very prominently advertise a good review they had gotten from Lonely Planet several years before.
I thought I would share a few pictures I took there. I'm wishing peace and safety for the people and cultural treasures of Palmyra with all of my heart.
|Entrance to Palmyra|
|Side View of Temple Bel|
|View of Mountains and Palm Trees|
|Citadel and Columns|