Do I need a visa?
Yes, everyone coming to Syria needs a visa. Thankfully for you we sort this on our end before the tour starts. The price for the visa does fluctuate wildly between nationalities. UK is USD 140, Australians and Kiwis USD 130, many European countries will be approximately USD 70. The cheapest we have seen is for Brazilians who only pay USD10!
This fee must be paid at the border with US Dollars.
These prices may change however, so this is only an indicator.
Click here for more information.
Is it safe?
This is the big question on everyone’s mind when they want to come to Syria. On day one when you get on that bus in Beirut to cross the border you might be nervous and even a little scared. This is completely normal, after all you are heading to a country that does have an active warzone. And given everything you've read and heard for the past decade, it would be a bit weird if you didn't have some sort of anxiety.
Despite all this however, Syria is safe. Especially the cities of Damascus, Aleppo and Latakia. We do get close to areas that have conflict, however it is extremely unlikely that we will see anything other than soldiers being transported back and forth. If you’re expecting to see bombs exploding and people shooting guns, then you will probably be let down.
There have been rocket attacks from Israel, however these seem to only be targeting military targets and have not struck anywhere near where we stay.
Overall, we need permission from the government to travel throughout Syria, and while we're there have constant security updates from multiple sources, so if somewhere is deemed too dangerous we will simply not go.
Can I talk about the conflict?
Just like with North Korea or Turkmenistan , in Syria you will see pictures of the president everywhere. It is OK to ask questions about him. However, certain topics may be touchy and better off left alone before you get to know the person you’re speaking to. However there are plenty of people that you will be able to cross this barrier with and speak freely with.
Our advice is when asking a question about something that may be sensitive, don’t ask a loaded question. Go in with an open mind.
Further, when talking about events of the war, many Syrians will refer to the current situation as “the crisis”, as opposed to simply calling it a war or anything else, as the situation itself is still very complex and the war element is largely non-existent for many Syrians now.
Is it OK to take photos?
Certainly! Syria is a stunningly beautiful country, and you can take photos to show friends and family back home. Some things to note however, we do cross through many military checkpoints and photography is obviously not allowed here.