Damascus is home to Syria’s National Museum which has a huge garden full of statues, columns and other odd bits of stonework for which no room could be found inside. The entrance to the museum building is striking.


It is reconstruction of the entrance to an Ummayad desert palace of the eighth century.

Unfortunately all photography is forbidden within the Museum, but we can tell you that it has a 3rd century synagogue discovered in the desert in eastern Syria and now reconstructed here, with amazing wall paintings.

Also an underground tomb, or hypogeum, from Palmyra has been rebuilt inside. Definitely worth a visit.

Next door to the Museum is the Tekkiye Mosque which was designed by Sinan and combines the Arab distinctive striped stonework with very Turkish slim minarets.

The mosque was also part of the Ottoman system of support for the haj and it has an adjacent building to accommodate pilgrims. Both of these were being restored so were closed during our visit.