5 Must-Visit Destinations if You Have Never Been to the Middle East

Travelling to new countries and experiencing different cultures is a part of life that we should all make the most of. It is criminal to remain rooted to one place for the entirety of our lives, not ever experiencing the great beyond or educating ourselves in a way we never thought possible.

It is no secret that the difference in culture between the west and east is great, although in many cases much the same. Despite the negative headlines and charitable campaigns set up to help those in need, the Middle East remains a tourist hotspot and, if you have never been, there is so much that you are missing out on.

Abu Dhabi

The capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a hotbed for tourists from the world over, largely due to its coastal location as its sits on an island just off the country’s mainland. In Abu Dhabi, there is a rich sailing history that stretches back centuries, aided by the city’s convenient location, and tourists can make the most of over 400km of coastline.

When visiting the capital, you simply have to sample the local traditions which include camel racing, Ayala dancing, falconry and more. You will discover a world that you will find difficult not to fall in love with.

Dubai

While Abu Dhabi is the UAE’s capital, Dubai is its flagship and takes place on almost everybody’s wanderlust bucket list. There is not much else to say about this prosperous city that hasn’t already been said, and there is a lot to take in while you are there.

Dubai isn’t all sports cars and strict laws (which you will do well to research before heading out), but it is also the perfect setting for a truly relaxing holiday. Of course, temperatures soar during the summer months, so it is best to visit the UAE outside of peak months (May – August) as it is not uncommon for thermometers to tip over 40 degrees Celsius.

Bahrain

One of the secret treasures of the Middle East, Bahrain is made up of over 30 islands in the Arabian Gulf situated close to Saudi Arabia and Qatar. You could be forgiven for only knowing the country as one of the stops on the F1 calendar, having hosted a Grand Prix at its national circuit every year since 2004 (apart from 2011 when the race was cancelled).

Manama, the country’s capital city, is home to a plethora of tourist attractions, which include the Bahrain National Museum, the famous central market and a stunning coastline where tourists can head to the beach in the sun.

Oman

Oman is another one of those destinations that do not immediately spring to mind, however, the country – and its capital, Muscat, in particular – has been growing in popularity. Holidays to this Middle Eastern country are relatively cheap, especially compared with its neighbouring country, the UAE.

Muscat, which is located on the northern coastline of Oman, is surrounded by picturesque mountains and desert land, which tourists can get a closer look at in off-road vehicles.

Jordan

Home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Jordan’s popularity in recent years has dipped owing to some of the civil unrest in areas, but Petra remains a safe tourist destination in the south of the country. The archaeological city dates back to as far as 312BC but remained a mystery to the western world until 1812 when a 27-year-old Swiss explorer by the name of Johann Ludwig Burckhardt discovered the site.

In the years that have passed, millions of tourists have followed Burckhardt’s lead and explored the historical site for themselves, all of which have been taken aback by the wonder. With so much to offer, why not visit the Middle East and see the world from a brand new perspective!

This is a collaborative post.

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