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Damascus - Governorate of Damascus Damascus / Governorate of Syria - City - The governorates of Syria are sub-divided into districts, which are divided into sub-districts. Governorates - Governorates of Syria - Syria is divided into 14 governorates. City : Damascus - Damascus - Population : 1,711,000 Damascus - دمشق Damascus is the Capital City of the Damascus Governorate - Damascus (Arabic: دمشق‎ Dimashq) is the capital and the second-largest city of Syria after Aleppo. Damascus is located southwestern in Syria - At Coordinates: 33°30′47″N 36°17′31″E - Elevation 680 m (2,230 ft) Government of Damascus : Damascus is a Governorate of Syria The Governor of Damascus Bishr Al Sabban (2015) The Area of Damascus is : City 105 km2 (41 sq mi) / Urban 77 km2 (30 sq mi) Time zone EET (UTC+2) / Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3) Phone Code of Damascus is 11 - Country code: +963, The Area code(s) or City code is : 11 Website damascus.gov.sy UNESCO World Heritage Site - Cultural - The Official name is Ancient City of Damascus - Is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Damascus is a major cultural and religious center of the Levant. The City of Damascus has an estimated population of 1,711,000 (2009 estimate) - Demonym(s) Damascene - Damascus metropolitan area of 2.6 million people (2004). It is commonly known in Syria as ash-Sham (Arabic: الشام‎ ash-Shām) and nicknamed as the City of Jasmine (Arabic: مدينة الياسمين‎ Madīnat al-Yāsmīn). - City of Jasmin - Damascus experiences a semi-arid climate. The Barada River flows through Damascus. Damascus is the seat of the central government and all of the government ministries. Etymology - The name of Damascus first appeared in the geographical list of Thutmose III as T-m-ś-q in the 15th century BC suspected to be pre-Semitic. Dimašqa in Akkadian - T-ms-ḳw in Egyptian - Dammaśq (דמשק) in Old Aramaic - Dammeśeq (דמשק) in Biblical Hebrew. - Qumranic Darmeśeq (דרמשק) - Darmsûq (ܕܪܡܣܘܩ) in Syriac. The English and Latin name is Damascus - Greek: Δαμασκός, from Aramaic: ‎ דרמשק (a well-watered place). In Arabic, the city is called Dimashqu sh-Shām (دمشق الشام), or shortened to either Dimashq or ash-Shām by the citizens of Damascus, of Syria and other Arab neighbors and Turkey (as Şam). Ash-Shām is an Arabic term for "Levant" and for "Syria"; the latter, and particularly the historical region of Syria, is called Bilādu sh-Shām (بلاد الشام / "land of the Levant"). Places Mount Qassioun Umayyad Mosque façade Ruins of the Jupiter Temple at the entrance of Al-Hamidiyah Souq The Biblical Street called Straight of Damascus Courtyard of the Umayyad Mosque The dome of the mausoleum of Nur ad-Din The historical al-Merjeh square Syrian civil war Damascus is about 80 km (50 mi) from the Mediterranean, sheltered by the Anti-Lebanon mountains. It is 680 meters (2,230 ft) above sea-level. The city has an area of 105 km2 (41 sq mi), out of which 77 km2 (30 sq mi) is urban, while Jabal Qasioun occupies the rest. Barada river Damascus has a potential tourism industry. stling cafes opened in the old city which attract plenty of European tourists and Damascenes alike.[74] The real-estate in Damascus. Real-estate adviser Cushman and Wakefield listed Damascus office space as the eighth most expensive in the world in 2009.[74] The office market in Damascus is rather immature and the demand for premium office space surpasses supply. However, new supply of office space is expected to be delivered in 2009.[75] Damascus is home to a wide range of industrial activity, such as Textile, food processing, cement and various chemical industries.[72] The majority of factories are run by the state, however. Limited privatization in addition to economic activities let by the private sector were permitted starting in the early 2000s with the liberalization of trade that took place.[72] Traditional handcrafts and artisan copper engraving are still produced in the old city.[72] The Damascus stock exchange formally opened for trade in March 2009, and the exchange is the only stock exchange in Syria.[76] It is currently located in the Barzeh district, within Syria's financial markets and securities commission. Its final home is to be the upmarket business district of Yaafur.[77] The estimated population of Damascus in 2011 was 1,711,000. The Kurds are the largest minority group, with a population of approximately 300,000.[78] Damascus is the centre of an over-crowded metropolitan area with an estimated population of 5 million. The metropolitan area of Damascus includes the cities of Douma, Harasta, Darayya, Al-Tall and Jaramana. Religion - The majority of the inhabitants of Damascus are Sunni Muslims, whereas Alawites and Twelver Shi'ites make up a sizeable minority. It is believed that there are more than 2,000 mosques in Damascus, the most well-known being the Umayyad Mosque.[79] Christians represent about 10%-15% of the population. Multiple Eastern Christian rites have their headquarters here as well. The Christian districts in the city are Bab Tuma, Qassaa and Ghassani. Each with many churches, most notably the ancient Chapel of Saint Paul. At the suburb Soufanieh a series of apparitions of the Virgin Mary have reportedly been observed between 1982 and 2004.[80] Historical sites The Damascus Straight Street (referred to in the conversion of St. Paul in Acts 9:11), also known as the Via Recta, was the decumanus (East-West main street) of Roman Damascus, and extended for over 1,500 meters (4,900 ft). Today, it consists of the street of Bab Sharqi and the Souk Medhat Pasha, a covered market. The Bab Sharqi street is filled with small shops and leads to the old Christian quarter of Bab Tuma (St. Thomas's Gate). Medhat Pasha Souq is also a main market in Damascus and was named after Midhat Pasha, the Ottoman governor of Syria who renovated the Souk. At the end of the Bab Sharqi street, one reaches the House of Ananias, an underground chapel that was the cellar of Ananias's house. The Umayyad Mosque, also known as the Grand Mosque of Damascus, is one of the largest mosques in the world and also one of the oldest sites of continuous prayer since the rise of Islam. A shrine in the mosque is said to contain the body of St. John the Baptist. The mausoleum where Saladin was buried is located in the gardens just outside the mosque. Sayyidah Ruqayya Mosque, the shrine of the youngest daughter of Husayn ibn Ali, can also be found near the Umayyad Mosque. The ancient district of Amara is also within a walking distance from these sites. Another heavily visited site is Sayyidah Zaynab Mosque, where the tomb of Zaynab bint Ali is located. Bab Tuma gate The Old City of Damascus with an approximate area of 128 hectares[82] is surrounded by ramparts on the northern and eastern sides and part of the southern side. There are seven extant city gates, the oldest of which dates back to the Roman period. Bab al-Faradis ("the gate of the orchards", or "of the paradise") Bab al-Salam ("the gate of peace"), all on the north boundary of the Old City Bab Tuma ("Touma" or "Thomas's Gate") in the north-east corner, leading into the Christian quarter of the same name, Bab Sharqi ("eastern gate") in the east wall, the only one to retain its Roman plan Bab Kisan in the south-east, from which tradition holds that Saint Paul made his escape from Damascus, lowered from the ramparts in a basket; this gate has been closed and turned into Saint Paul Chapel marking this event, Bab al-Saghir (The Small Gate) Bab al-Jabiya at the entrance to Souk Midhat Pasha, in the south-west. Other areas outside the walled city also bear the name "gate": Bab al-Faraj, Bab Mousalla and Bab Sreija, both to the south-west of the walled city. Churches in the old city: Chapel of Saint Paul, House of Saint Ananias, Mariamite Cathedral of Damascus, The Roman Catholic Cathedral in Zaitoon (Olive) Alley, Saint John the Damascene Church, Saint Paul's Laura, Saint George's Syriac Orthodox Cathedral Islamic sites in the old city: Saladin mausoleum, Umayyad Mosque, Sayyidah Ruqayya Mosque , Bab Saghir Cemetery, Mausoleum of Saladin, Nabi Habeel Mosque - Madrasas : Al-Adiliyah Madrasa , Az-Zahiriyah Library, Nur al-Din Madrasa - Khans : Khan Jaqmaq, Khan As'ad Pasha, Khan Sulayman Pasha Old Damascene houses : Azm Palace, Bayt al-Aqqad, Maktab Anbar, Beit al-Mamlouka In 2007, the Old City of Damascus and notably the district of Bab Tuma have been recognized by The World Monument Fund as one of the most endangered sites in the world. In October 2010, Global Heritage Fund named Damascus one of 12 cultural heritage sites most "on the verge" of irreparable loss and destruction Damascus University - Syrian Virtual University - International University for Science and Technology Syrian Private University- Arab International University University of Kalamoon - Yarmouk Private University- Wadi International University The institutes of the education : Higher Institute of Business Administration, Higher Institute for Applied Science and Technology, National Institute of Administration Damascus was chosen as the 2008 Arab Capital of Culture. Museums : National Museum of Damascus - Azem Palace- Military Museum - October War Panorama Museum - Museum of Arabic Calligraphy - Nur al-Din Bimaristan Sports and leisure in Al-Fayhaa sports complex - Popular sports include football, basketball, swimming, tennis, table tennis, equestrian and chess. Damascus is home to many football clubs that participate in the Syrian Premier League including Al-Jaish, Al-Shurta, Al-Wahda and Al-Majd. Other sport clubs are located in several districts of the city: Barada SC, Qasioun SC, Nidal SC, Al-Muhafaza, Al-Fayhaa SC, Al-Thawra SC, Dummar SC and Al-Arin SC. The fifth and the seventh Pan Arab Games were held in Damascus in 1976 and 1992 respectively. Damascus has Coffeehouses, where —in addition to Arabic coffee and tea— nargileh (water pipes) are served, proliferate Damascus. Card games, tables (backgammon variants), and chess are activities frequented in cafés. Parks : Tishreen Park is one of the largest and popular parks in Damascus. It is home to the annual Damascus Flower Show. Other parks include: al-Jahiz, al-Sibbki, al-Tijara, al-Wahda, etc. Damascus' Ghouta (Oasis) is also a popular weekend-destination for recreation. Many recreation centres operate in the city including sport clubs, swimming pools and golf courses. The Syrian Arab Horse Association in Damascus offers a wide range of activities and services for horse breeders and riders. Zabadani resort near Damascus - attractions Madaya: a small mountainous town well known holiday resort. Bloudan: a town located 51 km (32 mi) north-west of the Damascus, its moderate temperature and low humidity in summer attracts many visitors from Damascus and throughout Syria, Lebanon and the Persian Gulf. Zabadani: a city in close to the border with Lebanon. Its mild weather along with the scenic views, made the town a popular resort both for tourists and for visitors from other Syrian cities. Maaloula: a town dominated by speakers of Western Neo-Aramaic. Saidnaya: a city located in the mountains, 1,500 metres (4,921 ft) above sea level, it was one of the episcopal cities of the ancient Patriarchate of Antioch. World Heritage Sites in Danger Roman triumphal arch Parks in Damascus The Jewish quarter Umayyad Square General view at night
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