Middle East Holidays
The Middle-Eastern Travel Specialists
The Middle East is famous for conflict and religion – not coincidentally. Oil-rich Islamic states, with ancient medieval cities and sweltering deserts, sit cheek-by-jowl with Westernised, Jewish Israel. You can see modern beach resorts, Crusader castles, traditional Arabic souks, and visit some of the most important spiritual locations on the planet. The Middle East is popular with pilgrims of many religions. The secular beach resorts will be popular with everyone. Adventurers will relish visiting challenging destinations like Saudi Arabia. Wherever you go, try and pick up some local bargains; after all, this part of the world is famous as a centre for trade.
What to Do in the Middle East
Pilgrims of all religions come to visit – to complete Hajj, or see any number of other places that are significant to at least three major religions. Any who is interested in history will be fascinated by this region – the Crusaders, Ottomans, Byzantines, Romans and many other civilisations have made their mark on these conflicted lands. If you’re more interested in shopping and cocktails, then check out Dubai and some of the Israeli cities, where having a good time is all part of the experience. Middle Eastern food is also delicious – try falafel, hummus, and local olives.
Middle-Eastern Holidays Guide
The Middle East may have a troublesome reputation, but the vast majority of it is open to travellers -use your common sense and keep up to date on news when travelling in the region, the same as anywhere else. There is year-round sunshine in many Middle Eastern locations, but remember it can always get cold at night. One of the hassles of travelling in the Middle East is that several countries will not allow travellers to pass if they have Israeli stamps in their passport; Israel enforces similar rules. Plan your route carefully.
Holidays in the Mediterranean States
The Mediterranean states would seem to be those best suited for a beach holiday and whilst this may apply to certain parts of Israel,most of the coast is volatile and in conflict. Syria was recently a destination on the tourist map but engulfed in internal conflict it is now a destination to stay well clear of. Lebanon has its ups and downs and The Palestine is still a place only for journalists or those who have families there to visit. So this leaves only Israel as a safe Middle East destination to visit on the Mediterranean with Jordon also attracting those interested in its rich archaelogical and Biblical sites.
Holidays in the Gulf States
The Gulf States are a fasionating mix of Western-friendly regions booming in tourism and the bitter-sweet twin rascals of Iran and Iraq. Despite its proximity to these war torn countries, The United Arab Emirates, of which Dubai is the best known of the seven emirates, is one of the worlds most successful tourist regions with massive hotels and fanciful resort developments that include "The Palms" and "The World", incredible and hugely expensive engineering feats that created islands in the ocean. Qatar is another booming destination and is investing huge money in tourism with the World Cup beckoning. If you are seeking the sun, sea and sand, The Gulf States has almost guaranteed year-round blue skies, world class shopping and superb restaurants, and although mostly "dry" in terms of alcohol, the region is becoming a must-visit destination amongst middle-class Europeans.
Holidays in the Red Sea States
The three states bordering the Red Sea and Arabian Sea are dominated by the Arabian Desert, homeland to the nomadic Bedouin tribes which still today number almost one milion people, roaming the desert. Oil-rich Saudi Arabia is by far the largest state in the Middle East, encompassingt over half of its land mass and along with its wealth, domiantes the region politically yet with a strong and traditional monarchy has avoided internal conflict. Despite this, it's a strict county as far as tourism is concerned, and freedom of movement can be difficult to obtain. The two southern states, Yemen and Oman, are probably the best coutries in the region to visit for an adventure holiday, both with fascinating mountain villages, ancient cities and bustling coastal towns with excellent markets.