My husband and 12year old son are trying to try and go in the footsteps of 'Alexander the Great' through Turkey, Syria, Jordan and Israel in just 3 weeks.
What would be your advise as to how long to stay in places, best transport method ,how to get the most in such little time and in your opinion whether it would be too arduious for a child.
They intend to do this as budget travellers.
It would also be good to get some reassurance.
As a Turk who have seen israel I may suggest a few.
in Turkey all 3star and above hotels will give the comfort that your family needs. in isarel jordan and syria I advise you to stay in 4-5 stars.
in turkey you must see istanbul, kapadokya, efes and antakya ( not antalya) surely. if I were you I would fly to syria but you can cross the border from antakya by bus or train if you like. there you should see damascus and aleppo. you cant fly or drive from syria to israel they have closed borders. so you should fly to jordan first. petra and the river jordan itself are must see places. in israel if I were you I would start with nazareth to see arabic heritage first. Then jerusalem and then finally tel aviv. hope you will have a great time.
That is going to be difficult. I've done parts of the trip and Turkey-Syria-Jordan-Israel would realistically take approx. 5-6 weeks. Even if you only see the highlights you'll be racing all over the place. Plus, don't expect everything to go by plan - dealing with the laid-back work attitude of the locals (bukrah, inshallah - tomorrow, god's will permitting) is part of travelling in the area. So such a trip will be quite strenous, especially since you are forced to rely on public transport (bus and shared taxi) for most of it. (You cannot take your own car bc you are going Syria-Jordan-Israel and you cannot cross borders in a rented car.)
My personal recommendation would be to focus on either 1) Turkey, 2) Syria or 3) Israel and Jordan.
In Turkey potential highlights would be Istanbul, Ephesus, Milet, Cappadocia.
I agree, you are trying to do just too much in too little time.
I spent 2 weeks in Turkey and feel like I was only able to get a taste of the country, even with flying to/from Cappadocia.
Then last year I spent about 3 weeks EACH in Jordan, Israel & Syria. I did it all on public transport and it was pretty easy, but time consuming. I don't think you can realistically do these 4 countries in 3 weeks, especially on a budget that probably won't allow a lot of flights and private long distance taxis
Turkey - Istanbul, Ephesus & Cappadocia would be my top choices. Check out the Apricot Hotel in IStanbul and stay in a cave hotel in Cappadocia. I don't remember the name of the place I stayed in, but it was owned by the same people as the much pricier Kelebek nearby.
Jordan - Petra & Jerash. With your limited time, Petra is a long drive, but so worth it! Spend at least 2 days. I would reccomend staying in Madaba instead of Amman. It is a nice little historic town and closer to the sites you will want to see in the Amman area anyhow. Stay in the Miraim Hotel and eat at the fantastic Haret Jdoudna.
Syria - my favorite country of the region! forget the rest and spend 3 weeks there!
Damascus & Allepo are my top pics. Palmyra was amazing, but it is at least a day there, 2 to see it and a day back. Stay at the delightful Damascus Hostel - Raymond will get you set for the rest of your time in the country. Eat lots of pastry, especially chocolate croissants from the no-name hole in the wall in the souk.