Being in Syria you can’t help but want to ride out into the desert. It’s always there on the horizon, calling you with the promise of trackless riding, forgotten cities, and unspoilt views … And this siren delivers.
Heading almost due east towards Palmyra you quickly leave the fertile fields behind and enter the desert. It’s not a desert filled with the soft, flowing lines of windswept dunes, but one drawn with the hard lines of rocky outcroppings and chiseled valleys. Before long you know this desert was made for your bike- no roads are needed when that hard gravel desert is waiting on either side. Why follow a road around a hill or over a valley when it seems that nature has carved her own paths for you to explore?
Sometimes the occasionally haphazard road construction does push your hand a bit…
Other times, there’s just not much to choose from between on or off the road
But you don’t feel the passion until you take a compass bearing and just ride off into the desert.
Riding this way and then hitting the road about where I thought it should be before going into Palmyra was a great high. Mind you, I think even coming in on a tour bus couldn’t take the wonder away from Palmyra ruins.
I had the whole 6km site to myself the afternoon I arrived and for the following morning until around noon when said tour bus did arrive. By that time I ridden (yes, you are allowed to ride it!) the site and was happy to leave it to them to explore the underwhelming town of Palmyra itself before heading out.
When you day of sightseeing starts like this, you know it’s going to be good!
And I wasn’t wrong.
Okay, yes- that was a rather large and self-indulgent collection of bike-with-a-different-background pics, but I love the bike against the ruins/desert look. Oh, and it’s my blog.