Forgotten Cities Hiking Trail

ClientSwiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
LocationAllepo, Syria
ServiceWayfinding and Signage Design
Inaugurated inJune, 2007

Recipient of the SEGD (Society for Experiential Graphic Design) Global Design Honor Award 2011.

Ancient Towns, 40 KM of trail, 200 signs.

The Forgotten Cities (Also known as the Dead Cities) are a group of 700 abandoned villages in northwest Syria between Aleppo and Idlib. Built during the 4th and 5th centuries, these villages are remarkable remnants of the Byzantine era and once formed a major agricultural engine for the region. It was also a key pilgrimage site for Christians; the Church of Saint Simeon Stylites is one of the most famous buildings in the area.

Existing trails used to reach farmland were used as the starting point for developing routes that connected the ancient sites.

Our team's design solution, concrete.

A signage system that was capable of withstanding harsh weather conditions, low cost, and to mitigate vandalism. Minimizing obstruction and visual clutter was also a key factor.

Manufacturing was on-site, thanks to the help of the local community.

Challenging terrain meant that some signs had to be carried to their final destination to be 'planted'.

Test drive on launch day.

Go on a hike!

We’re proud that our work helped the sites become recognised as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.