travel to Syria - Damascus

Post updated Jan 2024

Our travel to Syria was a very memorable experience. We travelled overland from Lebanon in September 2019.

Syria used to be one of the most popular destinations in the Middle East, and now is finally opening up for travellers again.

While general tourism to Syria is probably still a few years away, curious travellers are waiting to see this magnificent country.

Let’s cover how travelling to Syria is possible and the steps you must take to make it happen.

How to get Syria Visa

Can you travel to Syria right now? Are tourists travelling in Syria at the moment?

Yes, and yes. To travel to Syria, you must obtain a visa unless you are one of the few Arabic nations that don’t require a visa for Syria.

So, how do you get a Syrian tourist visa?

Your Syrian visa can be obtained from your nearest Syrian Embassy or at the border. However, to get your visa, you will currently need a special security clearance that needs to be organised through a travel agency in Syria.

Important: US passport holders can now visit Syria again (March 2023), but the process can take longer. You must travel with a tour operator; no independent travel is currently allowed.

If you decide to travel to Syria with a travel agency on a tour (see more on that below), this security clearance will be included in your tour cost and it usually takes only a week or two, unless you have a US passport.

You will then be able to obtain your visa at the border. The cost of the visa depends on nationality; some examples are listed below:

Syrian Visa stamp at the border

Syrian Visa fee at the border:

  • Australians and New Zealand is 130 USD
  • European passport holders pay 50 – 100 USD (Slovak passport was 70 USD)
  • Americans 160 USD 
  • British 140 USD

When you leave Syria, you will also have to pay an exit fee of 2,500 SYP, around 5 USD.

You cannot get your visa at the border if you don’t have security clearance.

If you try to visit independently, this security clearance cost varies from USD 270 – 500 per person and is obtained through the travel agency.

The Syrian Visa at the border is a stamp only, valid for 15 days from entry.

Please Note: you will not be eligible to get an ESTA visa for the USA if you have visited Syria.

You must apply at the US embassy for a different type of tourist visa and pay a fee of USD 160. You also cannot have an Israel stamp in your passport; you will be refused entry.

And if you are trying to visit every country as we have, note that with a Syrian stamp in your passport, you might not be allowed to enter Libya.

Recommended Tour Agency for Travel in Syria

We travelled in Syria with Golden Target Tours and would highly recommend this local tour operator.

Contact Khaldoun at +963 944 372 700 (WhatsApp) for more information, or you can contact him via email: [email protected]

Check out our Visa Page for helpful information on how to get a visa for some countries