Take a trip to sunny (and war-torn) Syria!

Published September 1st, 2016 - 02:03 GMT
A snapshot from the Syrian Ministry of Tourism's most recent video of Tartus. (Youtube)
A snapshot from the Syrian Ministry of Tourism's most recent video of Tartus. (Youtube)

Syria once made $8 billion annually from tourism, but the outbreak of the civil war in 2011 made foreign tourism nearly non-existent. Now, the Syrian regime has launched a new campaign to bring tourism back to the country.

Focusing on regime-controlled areas like Tartus, Damascus, and Palmyra; the Syrian Ministry of Tourism has released a series of videos and pictures encouraging tourism to the war-torn nation.

Under the slogan “Always Beautiful”, the Syrian Ministry of Tourism operates various social media channels that offer a tantalizing glimpse of Syria that excludes much of the fighting, bombing, and violence the country has experienced over the past half-decade.

On the ministry’s official YouTube page, footage captured by drones gives the regime-stronghold of Tartus the appearance of a summer retreat untouched by the conflict raging just miles away.

In another video posted by the ministry, a wide variety of tourist sites are featured. From Damascus to Palymra, the video gives an impression of relative calm in multiple locales.

Despite the call for more foreign tourism, getting a tourist visa from Syrian government is complicated. Though direct flights still exist from Russia and Iran, gaining access to regime-controlled Syria is a difficult and unclear endeavour for many nationalities.

JC

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