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Damascus Region, Page 2


al-Dumeir (الضمير) is a modern town with a well-preserved Roman temple said to date from the 3rd century. The town itself is otherwise uninteresting, but the temple makes for a worthwhile afternoon excursion from Damascus (دمشق). Note the Greek inscriptions covering much of the eastern base of the temple.   Getting There: Getting to al-Dumeir (الضمير) is relatively simple as direct microbuses travel between the town and Damascus (دمشق). …

Haran al-Awamid
حران العواميد

Haran al-Awamid (حران العواميد), located in the fertile Ghouta (غوطة) oasis to the east of Damascus (دمشق), is a mostly mud-brick village which contains a couple items of historic interest. Most notable of these remains are the three large Roman/Nabatean columns from which the village gets it’s name (which translates to “village of the columns”). The tall, black basalt columns are stranded in the courtyard of a village home. If you …

Deir Mar Touma
دير مار توما

Deir Mar Touma (دير مار توما), or the Monastery of Saint Thomas, is located a short distance uphill from Seidnaya (صيدنايا), north of Damascus. The modern monastery is built neighboring an ancient chapel which was originally a Roman temple. The Roman foundations of this chapel are more clearly apparent than the church at Deir al-Shirubeim (دير الشيروبيم), further up the mountain, which is also of Roman …

Deir al-Shirubeim
دير الشيروبيم

Deir al-Shirubeim (دير الشيروبيم) is a large monastery complex overlooking Seidnaya (صيدنايا) and the surrounding valley from an altitude of 1,910 meters, at the top of Mount Qalamoun. The small church at the site was originally a Roman temple built in the 3rd century. Although the Roman architecture is not as well preserved as the chapel of Deir Mar Touma (دير مار توما), the church is clearly …

Deir Mar Elias
دير مار الياس

Deir Mar Elias (دير مار الياس) is a mountainside church built over a much more ancient cave to the north of Damascus (دمشق). The cave contains decently preserved frescoes, dated on stylistic grounds to the 11th or 12th century. The site offers beautiful views of the countryside, overlooking the valley that connects Damascus (دمشق) to the north of the country. It is associated by local tradition …