What are some cool places to travel to in Middle East?

The question, “Where do you want to study abroad?” or “Where do you want to travel to?” comes up a lot in college, and with so many places out there, it can be a hard question to answer. London, Paris, and a lot of European cities are commonly the answer, but unfortunately on rare occasion do I hear someone wants to travel to or live in a Middle Eastern country.

That’s just the way it is here right now, thanks to all the news of ISIS killing hostages, war crimes, and other political propaganda that floods our news feeds. Don’t get me wrong, there are dangerous places that are not recommended for tourists or some that are even illegal to travel to, but that’s not the case for all countries and cities in the area. Here’s a list of places the internet and I agree would be amazing to travel to and that everyone should experience.


Cairo, Egypt- While it’s still in a bit of political turmoil, the nation’s capital is home to breathtaking architecture resembling Paris and tons of attractions filling the city. The Khan El Khalili bazaar not only looks amazing, but smells good to, as it hopes to get any tourist and citizen to grab a bite there and buy lots of goods. There’s also the Egyptian Museum which holds some of Egypts most prized artifacts dating back to mummification and the Pharoahs. Above all else though, is the Giza pyramids which can be seen from almost all the city, and is considered the finish line for tourists seeing Cairo.


If you want to visit the only city in the world that is located in two continents, than you have to visit Istanbul, Turkey, which is touching both Europe and Asia. This city that used to be Constantinople has the look of many cultures, including even a North African feel. This is the city where East meets West, and has so many cool places for you to see, including the famous Hagia Sophia church, and the Blue Mosque, the most famous mosque in the world. Feeling adventurous? See if you can climb the Galata Tower while you’re there.


Petra, Jordan is also on the list if you want to see a place that’s more desert than others. The place looks ancient and magical, and you get to see lots of structures and temples sculpted by ancient desert tribes hundreds to thousands of years ago.


Last but not least is Dubai, which is personally where I want to go the most. It’s considered the Las vegas of the Middle East, and has worked hard to have the tallest building, one of the largest shopping malls and some of the most luxurious hotels in the world. South Asians only populate the place by 50%, with the rest of it’s occupants from somewhere else in the world. You’ll likely hear more English or some other language than the native Arabic. When you’re there, you’ll want to see Burj Khalifa (world’s tallest building, Dubai Mall (world’s largest mall, with a giant aquarium also), and the Miracle Garden (world’s largest garden, with 45 million flowers).

Those are my picks for best places to go, which places are you most interested in seeing?

Top 10 Places to Travel to in Middle East


11 thoughts on “What are some cool places to travel to in Middle East?

  1. Blogs about traveling to the Middle East are always very interesting to me because ever since I have been young I have wanted to travel there. There are so many beautiful cities to be seen! I find it strange that people for the most part disregard what is going on in the Middle East except for when you tell someone that you want to travel to the Middle East. Then they are quick to bring up that it is so dangerous and in the middle of turmoil, eager to tell you why you shouldn’t go there. At least that is the majority of reactions I have received. This blog points out several places that I have wanted to go for some time!

  2. I actually had the opportunity to travel to Istanbul, Turkey and feel in love instantly. I would give anything to go back for just a day. The people are so nice and the atmosphere everywhere I went was always welcoming which is the opposite of what people tend to feel when traveling to America because we are often referred to as “ugly Americans” by many other countries. I think it is kind of funny that you mentioned Petra, Jordan because that is what I wrote me blog on. Did you know Petra is in films like ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’, ‘The Mummy Returns’, and ‘Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen’? I would love to go there!

  3. This caught my eye because in all honesty, before I started the GLC program I was not interested in going to the Middle East. I feel that as a citizen of the United States I have never been given a positive representation of this area. Usually when the Middle East is seen through the media, it is given a negative light. Unfortunately over the years images of terrorism such as with Al-Qaeda and ISIS have been the main focus. I love that your blog brings attention to the beautiful places in the Middle East, because in reality while there are dangerous areas, it is also an area filled with immense history, tradition, and culture.

  4. I’ve heard amazing things about each of these places, whether it was from friends who have visited or articles I’ve read. I think they all have so much to offer in terms of culture, sight seeing and all around unique experiences. So many people only make it as far as Europe, and not that Europe’s not cool, but I want to broaden my experiences further. Although it’s not as popular to travel to the Middle East, these places are definitely on my list!

  5. I, like many others, always had the idea that the Middle East was too dangerous to consider as a travel destination. But after starting college and learning more about the region, I have changed my mind. While I understand that there are risks involved with traveling (anywhere), I think it’s important for everybody to see as much of the world as they can. All of these places are definitely on my travel bucket list, and I hope I can cross them off some day! The history, architecture, culture and natural beauty there is something that I have a great appreciation for and want to experience.

  6. These all are definitely appealing places! It would be interesting to hear the perspective of an OU student who has perhaps studied abroad in one of these locations! Also, what do you think some of the risks are when traveling to the Middle East compared to other regions? Do we really have anything to worry about?

  7. After taking Arabic and learning about other cultures, I want to travel to all of these places and some. You are totally right about the Middle East being a great travel destination. There is so much rich history in all of these cities dating back thousands of years ago. I would also really lie to travel to Mecca… but I am not a Muslim so I cannot! But I think Jerusalem would be great stop too.

  8. Awesome read! As someone who wants to one day travel to all parts of the world this was very interesting to me. I would love to see Cairo. One dillema I’ve dealt with though is whether or not it is smart to visit a place that may be momentarily dangerous, or if it would be better to wait until things calm down. How do you determine how dangerous a place is before you decide it’s not wise to travel there? I hope things calm down quickly, though.

  9. A easy fun read about good places to travel in the Middle East. I love the inclusion of all the photographs! I would have like to see a bit more detail in some parts here and there, but overall well written. I would have like to hear more about Dubai since it is a bit more wild for the Middle East. It would have been nice to see a larger range of small to large city represented, but I think it was a nice topic to write about!

  10. The wanderlust is real right now! The Middle East has always been somewhere I would like to travel to. The places on your list that I want to travel to are Istanbul, Turkey and in general the country of Jordan. This was such a cool topic to write about!

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