In a region not known for political stability, caution is advised with the same fervent tone in which a pilgrimage is encouraged. Sure, an airline ticket to the Middle East may come with a consular report, but since this ticket does grant entry to the birthplace of the world’s monotheistic religions, it should also come with no surprise that travel here might require a little faith.
In fact, there is as much culture, beauty, and kindness in the Middle East as there are unlicensed small arms, so it is important to know exactly where and why you’re going. Some go for the holiest city on Earth (Jerusalem), for the oldest city on Earth (Damascus), for the most dangerous city on Earth (there are a few), for the lowest spot on Earth (the Dead Sea), or for the odd sensation that they aren’t on Earth at all (Wadi Rum, Jordan; Wadi Ghul, Oman). Others may go so to max their credit cards in the mania of Dubai, and a good many others may only go for the spiritual sites that bring the holy books to life.
But whatever their reasons for going, travelers to the Middle East can certainly (and safely) find ancient wonders (Persepolis and Petra), modern cities (Tehran and Abu Dhabi) and the many clichés that make this region extraordinary (aromatic souks, Ferrari-driving sheikhs, carpets and camels, etc.).
Contact a Global Escapes Travel Consultant for more information on tour operators specializing in the Middle Eastern countries, such as Iran, Israel, Jordan, Oman, Pakistan, Syria, Tajikistan, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.