One region of the world has suffered from some of the most skepticism from tourists in the past few years: North Africa and the Middle East. But in 2018, the region is seeing a spike in numbers from visitors, astounding travel experts with its sudden popularity.
Here are a few reasons why you should travel to the Middle East this year:
There are plenty of emerging adventure offerings in this region, particularly Oman, Egypt, and Jordan. For hikers, the 40-day Jordan trail includes 370 miles of villages and monuments. You’ll get to see incredible canyon views and desert landscapes. And if you love history, Egypt was named as the number one destination for adventure in 2018 by G Adventures.
If you love destinations where you have plenty to do, you’ll love a once in a lifetime trip to Dubai. The UAE is jam-packed with activities for all ages, from luxurious spa breaks to desert safaris, adrenaline-packed skydiving and Arabian culture to exhilarating water park rides. In Ras Al Khaimah, the city is becoming more well-known for its many activities, and you’ll be able to try the longest zip line in the world.
There are a lot of amazing activities that you can do here in the Middle East and if you need some help, sites such as TripHobo can help you plan the activities that you wanted to try in the country.
The entire region also offers some of the wonders of the world without the hefty price tag. In Jordan, you can enjoy admission to more than 40 attractions if you purchase ahead of time and you’ll get your tourist entry visa fees waived. And in the UAE, visas are free if you’re staying for less than a month.
Culinary travel has been increasing hugely in the Middle East, particularly in interesting places like Palestine. These days, visitors are doing more than just the typical religious sites (not that these aren’t breathtaking). On the West Bank, Nablus is now a food destination for its sweets and delicacies, local cheeses, and farmers’ markets. In Israel, tours are extending beyond the popular food scene in Tel-Aviv, and allow visitors to learn about the different backgrounds of the people in the area, without disregarding the conflict.
If there’s one thing you’ve probably already heard about the people of the Middle East, it’s that they’re incredibly welcoming to foreigners. Locals are pleased to find tourists wandering the side streets and gazing at the monuments, so now’s the time to cross some of the main sights off your bucket list while the locals need tourism. This will ensure you have the most positive experience.