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Brad’s Travel Diary

Sunday, 05 Jun 2005

Location: Aleppo, Syria

MapOMG!!!! Just a very breathless update to inform you all that I'M IN SYRIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Very quickly, I spent last night in Hatay and the thought occured to me that seing as I was so close to Sryia, I might as well try to get in. Well, to my amazment I got a visa at the border and found myself today in Aleppo with no Lonely Planet and only a map of the city from the 19th century that I found on the internet! Talk about adventure travel. It's quite different to Turkey here, much more Arabic. I spent the day wandering around the massive souqs and mosques of the city, the huge citidel and trying not to get run down by the crazy traffic. I also have signed up for a whirlwind tour of Sryia. Tomorrow I'm going to the Euphrates then driving throught the desert and meeting some bedouins and then staying the night at Palmyra. Checking out the oasis there and then going to the crusaders castle at Krak des Chaveliers, staying the night somewhere nearby then seeing some stuff the next day before finishing the tour in Damascus. I'll have a day there and then I'll get a bus back to Antalya for the festival on the 11th there.
I totally can't believe I'm here! This is much more like what I imagined the Middle East to be like, exotic, busy, totally different and very few tourists anywhere. It's so great and so I'm so very excited! I will probably be out of contact from now until the 11th so for the fam - don't worry, I am safe and having a wonderful time.