Serjilla سرجلا

Serjilla (سرجلا)

Perhaps the most well preserved of Byzantine-era sites in the limestone massif, Serjilla (سرجلا) should be included on any itinerary to the region. Nowhere else can you get a better sense of what life would have been like in rural Syria during the Byzantine period. Spread over a small valley and surrounding hills, the settlement includes a remarkably well preserved church, inn, baths, olive presses, tombs and several villas. While none of the buildings here were extravagant in scale, it most closely represents a complete village typical of the period.


Getting There: Like most sites in the Jebel al-Zawiyeh (جبل الزاوية) region, Serjilla (سرجلا) can be approached either from the south via Maarat al-Naaman (معرة النعمان) and Kafr Nabl (كفر نبل‎), or from the north via Ariha (آريحا) and al-Bara (البارة).

Serjilla (سرجلا) is most easily approached from the north. Regular microbuses travel from Aleppo (حلب) to Ariha (آريحا), a roughly thirty minute trip. From Ariha (آريحا) there are very infrequent microbuses to the town of al-Bara (البارة), which is also home to one of the most important archaeological sites in the region. There are three different roads that lead from al-Bara (البارة) to Serjilla (سرجلا), which is about five kilometers to the southeast. There is no regular public transportation beyond al-Bara (البارة), so you’ll either need to hire a driver in al-Bara (البارة) or walk the remaining distance.

Alternatively, to approach Serjilla (سرجلا) from the south, first travel to Maarat al-Naaman (معرة النعمان), which has frequent microbus connections with Aleppo (حلب). That trip takes about forty five minutes. Maarat al-Naaman (معرة النعمان) also has microbus connections with Hama (حماة) and Idleb (إدلب), but these are less frequent. From Maarat al-Naaman (معرة النعمان), the next step is to find a microbus to the town of Kafr Nabl (كفر نبل‎), about ten kilometers to the southwest. There is no regular public transportation beyond Kafr Nabl (كفر نبل‎), so you’ll either need to hire a driver from here or walk the remaining distance.

From Kafr Nabl (كفر نبل‎), a road heads north towards al-Bara (البارة). Follow this road for two kilometers, then turn right (east) and walk an additional two kilometers to the site of Shinshirah (شنشراح). From Shinshirah (شنشراح), a road continues northeast another two kilometers to the site of Rabiaa (ربيعة)Serjilla (سرجلا) is an additional two kilometers to the north of Rabiaa (ربيعة).

Coordinates: 35°40’17.55″N / 36°35’05.51″E

Transliteration Variants: Serjila, Serjella, Serjela, Sarjilla, Sarjila, Sarjella, Sarjela, Sergilla, Sergila, Sergella, Sergela, Sargilla, Sargila, Sargella, Sargela

Rating: 8.5 / 10

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