The city of al-Raqqa (الرقة) is one of Syria’s smaller provincial capitals and is seldom visited by tourists, but nonetheless has a rich history and some interesting archaeological sites. Most impressive of these is the Abbasid-era mosque, although only the minaret and some arches survive. Nearby are the remains of a small Abbasid-era palace. The old city was once fully enclosed by fortification walls, some of which still remain, mostly on the eastern and northern sides of the old city. Bab Baghdad, the southeastern gate, is well preserved. About a kilometer east of town is the archaeological site of Tel Biaa.
Getting There: al-Raqqa (الرقة) is a regional capital and easily reached by bus from most cities in Syria. There is also an infrequent train that stops in al-Raqqa (الرقة), though the late night schedule does not make it practical to use for most travelers.
Coordinates: 35°57’07.41″N / 39°01’15.68″E
Transliteration Variants: al-Raqqah, al-Raqqeh
Rating: (6 / 10)