Seiing one of maaany castles...

Latakia Travel Blog

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Nice view from the mountainous are around the castle

I somehow managed to get myself to Ugarit by one of the local Van/bus transports. Ugarit(Ras Shamra) is considered the most important and ancient bronze age site in the midle east. I went there and was mozying about for about half an hour. I`ve seen more impressive ruins...these were pretty owergrown by plants , some very nice flowers though!  Most the interesting stuff has been taken from here to various museums , including the Louvre in Paris....

Next I made my way to Qalat Saladin , a large castle with a very cool location on a narrow ridge close to the village of Al Haffeh. The bitch of the situation is that the minibus only went to the village , and it`s about 8km of mountain roads to get there. To get all the way a pityful tourist will have to bargain a ride from one of the locals.

My transport..
...but since this is the case for all tourists , the car owners in this village can take whatever crazy price they wish...and so they do....

I`m not gonna be pushed into those crazy prices , so I started walking...but after some time in the blazing hot sun , i had to throw in the towel and catch a ride with a guy on a motorbike....then after 10 minutes with my life hanging in a thin line we reached the castle...

After spending so much effort and time to get here It is an understatement to say that I was disappointed to find that it was closed because it was tuesday ( I`m used to sunday beeing the weekend...but not in Syria..nooo...). I was a bit pissed on the motorbike guy who failed to mention that it was closed , and now he was waiting for me to ride back with him for twice the price we had argued....grrrrr.....

I wanted to get into that castle ! even tried climbing the walls....but when Alexander the great and his army failed to enter this castle it was kinda doubtful that I would be able to conquer it... The castle was buildt in the first millenim BC and captured by the great arabic hero Salladin in 1188. Most of its present day form is the fortification buildt by Salladin.

After cursing, swearing and trying to climb the castle for half an hour , I had to give up and ride with the motorbike guy back to the village ,and then back to Lattakia.

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Nice view from the mountainous are…
Nice view from the mountainous ar…
My transport..
My transport..
Don`t ry to climb those walls...on…
Don`t ry to climb those walls...o…
Latakia
photo by: Stigen