Tag Archives: Middle East

Syria Before The Conflict Part Six, Damascus

The capital was to be our last port of call on our magical Syrian tour. The bus from Palmyra was packed, so we took the only available seats right at the back on the left hand side. Before long a soldier was leaning on Hamish’s shoulder fast asleep! We stopped half way for a foodstop. […]

Wordless Wednesday – Syrian Sisters

Syria Before The Conflict Part Five, Saladin’s Castle & Memory Tricks

Are you ever convinced of something only to find that the memory has played tricks on you? Well this happened to me whilst chronicling my 2009 Syria trip. I have just discovered some notes I scribbled along the way and have found two long held beliefs to be incorrect. First of all we visited in […]

Syria Before The Conflict Part Three, Hama & Krak

We bade a very fond farewell to Aleppo. We were on the 4am train to Hama some three hours south. Our hotel had kindly made us a packed breakfast. Not overly appealing as it happened, but nice of them to take the trouble. As you might expect, we slept most of the way and set […]

Wordless Wednesday – The Treasury, Petra

Jordan’s Jewels – Part 4 (Amman)

Our final destination was the capital where we would stay for two nights – one in the plush Crowne Plaza and one in a small threadbare hotel near the centre. On our first night we decided to stay in the hotel complex where we ordered a feast and some beers. Amman was known as a […]

Jordan’s Jewels – Part Two (Petra)

We set off bright and early for what promised to be the highlight of our trip – we were not to be disappointed. We planned to spend two nights in the Crowne Plaza just outside the Nabatean site, in the lap of semi luxury thanks to my business trip garnered loyalty points. En route we […]

My Top 15 Travel Pleasures – 6 to 4

6. Stumbling Across Something Great But Unexpected This can be a sporting occasion (European cup match in Budapest), a celebration (Armenian Independence Day in Yerevan) or a momentous event (being in Beirut on the day Israel pulled out of Lebanon for the last time).   My favourite however was the time my mate and I […]

Palmyra’s Triumphal Arch

With the news that there was a marble replica that would be in display in London for three days, I had of course to go and look for myself. I visited the historical site myself in May 2009 and you can see the replica and the original photographed by me below. This is how the […]

A-Z April Challenge – Qal’at Najm

During our stay in wonderful Aleppo in 2009 we hired a taxi driver to take us northwards to two castles named Qal’at Ja’bar and Qal’at Najm. OK I am cheating somewhat as the word qal’at means castle in Arabic, but having never been to Quebec or Queensferry I was struggling somewhat for a place I have visited beginning […]