Latakia, Syria

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Latakia, Syria

Region: Latakia


Geographic Coordinates: 35.516700, 35.783300
Temperature Range: 10.0°C to 30.0°C (50°F to 86°F)
Climate: Mediterranean climate with hot and dry summers and mild winters.
Population: 700000
Language: Arabic

Latakia is a beautiful coastal city situated on the eastern Mediterranean coast of Syria. It serves as the capital of the Latakia Governorate and is one of the most populous cities in Syria. The city has a long and fascinating history that dates back to ancient times, With evidence of human settlement found as far back as 4, 000 BC. Laodicea was once Latakia’s name, And it was an important port for trade between Phoenicians and other civilizations. Later on, It became part of the Roman Empire and served as an essential center for agriculture and commerce.

Despite being a bustling modern city today, Latakia retains much of its historical charm. The old town area is particularly picturesque with narrow streets lined with traditional stone houses adorned with wooden balconies. Visitors can explore several historic sites such as Saladin’s Castle which dates back to the 10th century AD or visit some of its many museums like Dar Al-Assad for Culture & Arts which showcases contemporary Syrian art. Latakia’s coastline boasts some stunning beaches such as Samra Beach or Ras Al-Basit Beach which are popular among locals and tourists alike.

The crystal-clear waters make it perfect for swimming or snorkeling while enjoying views of nearby mountains. Food lovers will find plenty to enjoy in Latakia too – seafood dishes are particularly famous here due to its proximity to the sea. Local specialties include grilled fish served with garlic sauce (toum), Kibbeh (meatballs made from bulgur wheat), Stuffed grape leaves (warak enab) and baklava (a sweet pastry dessert). The people of Latakia are known for their friendly nature, Hospitality, Love for music – visitors may come across local musicians playing traditional Arabic instruments like ouds or darbukas while wandering around town.

Despite being affected by conflict in recent years, Latakia remains a resilient city that has managed to maintain its charm and character. Its rich history, Stunning coastline, Delicious cuisine, And friendly people make it a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Syria.



Important Landmarks

  1. Citadel of Salah Ed-Din: This historic castle was built in the 10th century and is a popular attraction for tourists.
  2. Al-Assad National Library: This library is home to over 400,000 books and manuscripts, making it one of the largest libraries in Syria.
  3. Latakia Corniche: The Corniche is a beautiful seaside promenade that stretches along the Mediterranean coast.
  4. Latakia Museum: This museum features exhibits on local history, archaeology, and culture.
  5. Al-Mina Archaeological Site: The ancient ruins at Al-Mina are believed to date back to the Phoenician period.
  6. Qalaat al-Rasheed Castle: This castle was built during the Crusader era and offers stunning views of Latakia from its hilltop location.
  7. Sheikh Badr Mosque: One of the oldest mosques in Syria, Sheikh Badr Mosque is known for its beautiful architecture and intricate tilework.
  8. Nusayriyah Mountain Range: These mountains offer hiking trails with breathtaking views of Latakia’s coastline and surrounding countryside.

Primary Industries

  1. Port and Shipping Industry: Latakia’s port is one of the largest in Syria, handling a significant amount of cargo traffic.
  2. Textile Industry: The city has a thriving textile industry that produces cotton fabrics, garments, and carpets.
  3. Food Processing Industry: Latakia is renowned for its food processing industry that produces olive oil, canned fruits and vegetables, dairy products, and meat products.
  4. Chemicals Industry: The city houses several chemical factories producing fertilizers, pharmaceuticals, and other chemicals.
  5. Tourism Industry: Latakia attracts tourists due to its beaches and historical sites such as the Crusader Castle of Saladin.
  6. Agriculture Industry: The region around Latakia produces citrus fruits like oranges and lemons as well as olives which are used for making olive oil.
  7. Construction Industry: With the surge in tourism activities in recent years there has been an increase in construction activities such as hotels resorts etc…

Noteable History

  1. The city was founded in the 2nd millennium BC and has been inhabited by various civilizations such as the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, and Ottomans.
  2. During the Crusades, Latakia was an important port for European powers.
  3. In 1099 AD, Raymond IV of Toulouse captured Latakia during his campaign in Syria.
  4. The city played a significant role in the Arab-Israeli conflict as it was used as a base for Palestinian militants during their attacks on Israel.
  5. Notable people from Latakia include Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his family who are originally from the city.
  6. The famous Syrian poet Adonis (Ali Ahmad Said Esber) was born in Al-Qassabin village near Latakia.
  7. In 2015-2016, Russian military forces established a naval base in Latakia to support operations against ISIS in Syria’s civil war.
  8. The ancient Phoenician city of Ugarit is located near modern-day Latakia and is known for its discovery of cuneiform tablets that provided insight into ancient Near Eastern culture and language.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Saladin Castle: A historic castle built by the Crusaders in the 12th century.
  2. Latakia Museum: A museum showcasing artifacts from ancient civilizations that lived in the region.
  3. The National Museum of Aleppo: A museum displaying artifacts from various periods of Syrian history.
  4. The Roman Theater of Bosra: An ancient Roman theater dating back to the 2nd century AD.
  5. Al-Madina Souq: A traditional market selling local handicrafts and souvenirs.
  6. The Citadel of Aleppo: An ancient fortress located on a hill overlooking the city.
  7. Ugarit Archaeological Site: An archaeological site containing ruins from the ancient city-state of Ugarit.
  8. Tishreen War Memorial Museum: A museum dedicated to Syria’s military history and its role in wars fought against Israel and other countries over time.

Please note that due to ongoing conflicts and political instability in Syria, it is important to check travel advisories before planning a visit to any location within this country as many areas may be unsafe or inaccessible for tourists at this time.



Sports Teams

  1. Hutteen SC: Founded in 1947, Hutteen Sports Club is one of the oldest and most successful football clubs in Latakia. Over the years, it has won several titles including the Syrian Premier League title thrice.
  2. Tishreen SC: Another popular football club based in Latakia is Tishreen Sports Club which was founded in 1947. It has won several titles over the years including the Syrian Premier League title twice.
  3. Al-Jazeera SC: Despite being a relatively new football club founded only in 2005, Al-Jazeera Sports Club has already made its mark by winning several titles at both local and national levels.
  4. Al-Ittihad SC: Established in 1949, Al-Ittihad Sports Club is another popular football club based in Latakia that has won various titles over time including the Syrian Cup twice.
  5. Al-Wahda SC: A multi-sport organization based in Latakia that competes across various disciplines such as basketball, volleyball, handball and table tennis among others is Al-Wahda Sports Club.


Cultural Events

  1. Latakia International Film Festival – This festival features films from all over the world.
  2. Latakia Summer Festival – This festival includes music concerts, theater performances, and art exhibitions.
  3. Eid al-Fitr – A religious holiday celebrated by Muslims at the end of Ramadan.
  4. Christmas – Celebrated by Christians in December with church services and festive decorations.
  5. National Day of Syria – Celebrated on April 17th to commemorate the country’s independence from France in 1946.
  6. Al-Mawlid al-Nabawi – A celebration of Prophet Muhammad’s birthday observed by Muslims around the world.
  7. Eid al-Adha – A Muslim holiday that commemorates Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son for Allah’s sake.

Cuisine

  • Kebab Halabi: This is a popular dish in Latakia made with grilled meat served with bread and vegetables.
  • Fattoush: A salad made with fresh vegetables and herbs like tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley, and mint.
  • Seafood: Latakia is located on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea so seafood dishes are very popular including fried fish, shrimp kebab.
  • Al-Baba Restaurant: This restaurant serves traditional Syrian dishes like shawarma and falafel.
  • Al-Sultan Sweets: A famous sweet shop in Latakia known for their baklava and other Middle Eastern sweets.
  • Abu Ghassan Restaurant: A restaurant that serves traditional Syrian food like stuffed grape leaves and lamb kebab.
  • Al-Jazeera Restaurant: A seafood restaurant located on the beachfront that offers a variety of fresh seafood dishes including grilled fish platters.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Al-Assad National Park: This park is one of the largest parks in Latakia and features a lake, playgrounds, walking trails, and picnic areas.
    2. Al-Ramal Beach: This beach is located on the Mediterranean Sea and offers swimming, sunbathing, and water sports.
    3. Al-Tishreen Park: This park has a large green area with walking paths, playgrounds for children, and a small zoo.
    4. Latakia Sports City: This complex includes an Olympic-size swimming pool, tennis courts, football fields, basketball courts.
    5. The Citadel of Salah Ed-Din: This historic site offers stunning views of the city from its hilltop location.
    6. The Latakia Corniche: A beautiful coastal promenade that stretches along the Mediterranean Sea with cafes restaurants and shops.
    7. Qalaat Jabar Castle : A medieval castle located on top of a hill overlooking the city.
    8. Dar El Assad Museum : A museum showcasing Syrian history & culture.
    9. Saladin Mosque : One of the most important mosques in Latakia featuring Islamic architecture.
    10. Makmal Mountain : A popular hiking spot offering stunning views over Latakia.

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