Holidays to the Middle East

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The birthplace of Christianity, Judaism and Islam, the Middle East has more than earned its right to the claim of being the cradle of civilisation, and even now it continues to grow, change, and outpace the rest of the world. Whether you are drawn to the luxury high-rise Dubai and Abu Dhabi, or intrigued by the pyramids of Giza, entranced by the mysteries of Petra, or stunned by the vast expanse of Wadi Rum, the Middle East has enough treasures to keep even the most demanding of visitors coming back for more. Luxury Middle East holidays could involve anything from staying on a man-made island and floating in the waters of the Dead Sea to enjoying the hospitality of the Bedouins or enjoying a cocktail at the top of a Dubai skyscraper. With so much to choose from, the only problem you are likely to come across, is where to start your Middle Eastern adventure.

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Middle East Travel Information

Not all countries in the region can be reached via a direct flight.

  • Currency: Various 
  • Time difference: GMT +1 to +4 
  • Flight from UK: 7 hours 45 minutes on average 
  • Visa: Various 
  • Language: Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Berber and Kurdish 
  • National drink: Arak 
  • National dish: Various 
 Most Middle Eastern countries require a visa on arrival.
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Travel Tips & Advice for Middle East

Middle East Activities

Holidays to Middle Eastern countries can involve a variety of exciting, edifying and exhilarating experiences. For many visitors the main attraction will be relaxing in sun-soaked Dubai or by the Red Sea, but if you are after something that gets the pulse racing, then the Middle East has it; watch a camel race, go dune bashing and travel on horseback through Wadi Rum. Water sports fans can go scuba diving in Sharm El Sheikh or head to the Dead Sea, where you can literally float away.

Middle East Food & Drink

The list of places to visit in the Middle East is long, but perhaps you could start with Petra in Jordan, the 3rd century city carved from sandstone, and Wadi Rum where you can experience the unique lifestyle of the Bedouins. The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is a breathtaking example of modern Islamic architecture and a must-see on any visit holiday to Muscat, Oman. The Musandam Peninsula has fjords and offers diving, while Istanbul, Abu Dhabi or Dubai are all very different.

Middle East Attractions

The food of the Middle East is as varied as the countries themselves, and just as fascinating. The region has been a confluence of cultures, continents and cuisines for centuries, and the food reflects this just as much as the art or architecture. Spices, olives, sesame, chickpeas, dates, and mint can all be found in Middle Eastern dishes, while lamb and mutton are big favourites. Be sure to try a kebab, kibbeh, or if you're vegetarian, anything with aubergine is sure to be a hit.

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