The Middle East is a region rich in history, culture, and natural beauty. From the deserts of Saudi Arabia to the beaches of Oman, the region offers a diverse array of destinations that are sure to impress travelers. Here are 10 must-visit destinations in the Middle East, according to Amanda Statham in Lonely Planet.
- Petra, Jordan
The ancient city of Petra is one of Jordan’s most famous tourist attractions, and for good reason. Carved into red sandstone cliffs, the city features stunning architecture and intricate carvings that date back to the Nabataean kingdom. Visitors can explore the site on foot or by horseback, taking in the incredible views and learning about the history of this incredible city.
- Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Dubai is one of the world’s most vibrant and cosmopolitan cities, known for its towering skyscrapers, luxurious hotels, and bustling markets. From shopping at the famous Dubai Mall to taking in the views from the top of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, there is something for everyone in this thriving metropolis.
- Muscat, Oman
Muscat is a beautiful city nestled on the shores of the Gulf of Oman. Known for its stunning beaches, historic architecture, and friendly locals, it is a great place to relax and explore. Visitors can take a stroll along the Corniche, visit the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, or explore the charming Mutrah Souq.
- Wadi Rum, Jordan
Wadi Rum is a vast desert wilderness in Jordan that is known for its stunning red sandstone formations and ancient rock art. Visitors can take a guided tour of the area, or explore on their own by hiking or riding a camel. It’s an incredible place to disconnect from the world and take in the breathtaking natural beauty of the region.
- Jerusalem, Israel
Jerusalem is one of the most historic and important cities in the world, and a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to the Middle East. Home to some of the world’s most significant religious sites, including the Western Wall and the Dome of the Rock, the city is a fascinating blend of ancient and modern culture.
- Beirut, Lebanon
Beirut is a city of contrasts, with a mix of modern and historic architecture, bustling markets, and a thriving nightlife scene. Visitors can explore the city’s many museums and galleries, sample delicious Lebanese cuisine, or take a walk along the waterfront.
- Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Abu Dhabi is the capital city of the UAE and a great place to experience the culture and history of the region. From the stunning Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque to the traditional souks, visitors can explore the city’s many attractions and learn about the rich heritage of the UAE.
- Cappadocia, Turkey
Cappadocia is a stunning region of central Turkey known for its otherworldly landscape of fairy chimneys and cave dwellings. Visitors can take a hot air balloon ride over the landscape, explore ancient underground cities, or take a hike through the stunning valleys.
- Isfahan, Iran
Isfahan is one of Iran’s most beautiful and historic cities, known for its stunning mosques, palaces, and gardens. Visitors can explore the city’s many attractions, including the UNESCO-listed Naqsh-e Jahan Square and the famous Imam Mosque.
- Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt
Sharm el-Sheikh is a popular beach resort town located on the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt. Visitors can enjoy the crystal-clear waters of the Red Sea, relax on the stunning beaches, or explore the area’s many dive sites and coral reefs.
In conclusion, the Middle East is a region full of diverse