5 April – 10 April 2005 

Since the 3rd millennium BC Aleppo was the meeting point of several important commercial roads in the north. It was the link in trade between Mesopotamia, the Fertile Crescent and Egypt. It was also the destination of the DAI Spring 2005 cultural trip.  From 5 April to 10 April, members of the group explored the history of this ancient city, visiting many cultural, architectural and historic landmarks. And, as if that wasn’t enough, a day trip to Damascus was added to the tour.

In Aleppo, participants visited extraordinary sites, including St. Semion, Qalaat Samaan, Serjaleah, Ebla, Aphamia, Ugarit, and Citadel.  A half-day at the Aleppo Museum gave the visitors an overview of the history of the area and a look at many of the priceless antiquities recovered during various archeological expeditions.  Time spent in the Old Bazaar proved to be a great mix of ancient history and present-day shopping.

For having just one day in Damascus, the participants covered a lot of ground, visiting everything from the Great Umayyad Mosque to St. Paul’s window.  Stops at the National Museum, Azem Palace and Hamidiah Bazaar gave them the opportunity to compare the histories and developments of these two important cities.