The Middle East is the birthplace of many world religions including Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Consequently, it’s a high-demand tourist attraction, as it is overflowing with rich history, fantastic archeological sites and ancient treasures.
Popular Everything has put together a collection of 10 places you MUST visit in the Middle East before you die. If you’ve got a bucket list, make sure to check these off before you close the deal!
1. Musandam Peninsula | Oman
The Musandam Peninsula is a mountainous Omani Peninsula, abundant in sea life and renowned for its vast, ancient watchtower. If you’re a history-lover, you’ll be awe-struck by all the prehistoric drawings and rock engravings hidden within the walls of its ancient villages. Aside from its historical entertainment, the Musandam offers challenging hikes and cool water activities such as dolphin watching, and diving and more.
2. Siwa Oasis | Egypt
Located between the Libyan border and the city of Cairo, the Siwa Oasis is a below-sea-level, fertile basin and one of Egypt’s most isolated settlements. The oasis resembles a desert canvas decorated with blooming palm and olive trees. This unique settlement is unique for its traditional practices, which stand distinctly apart from Egypt’s mainstream culture. If you want to take a step back in time, and experience something different, make sure to visit this wonderful place.
3. Petra | Jordan
A beautiful, rock-cut establishment, located in southern Jordan, Petra is a wondrous place, that’s been inhabited since prehistoric times. You can tour the site and discover the city’s ancient architecture, which is half carved into the rock. Aside from all the rock, Petra is surrounded by beautiful mountains and riddled with many passageways and canyons making it a really cool place to visit.
4. Blue Mosque | Turkey
The Blue Mosque is a beautiful, historical mosque, nestled in the heart of Istanbul. The structure was built during the rule of Ahmed I and is a real piece of work. The design of the mosque is famous for its hand-painted, blue tiles that dress the interior and for its staggering 13 domes! Within the structure, lies the ancient tomb of Ahmed, along with a large madrasah and exceptional hospice.
Cyprus is a magical, island that can be found in the Eastern Mediterranean. Along with its stunning beaches of crystal clear waters, Cyprus is rich with historical treasures. As the island is famous for its earliest human-activity in the world, there are endless amounts places you can explore such as the oldest water well in the world, ancient archeological sites, and a remarkably well-preserved antique village.
6. Dubai | UAE
Located on the Emirate’s northern coastline, Dubai is the biggest and most populated cities in the UAE. Along with incredible, modern beauty, Dubai is the most prominent business center in the Middle East. The city offers a wide selection of entertainment options, such as museums tours, luxurious shopping malls, cool aquariums and ancient architectural sites. If you’re not afraid of heights, make sure you visit Dubai’s remarkable observation deck of the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa, before you head back home.
7. Saqqara | Egypt
Not too far from Cairo, Saqqara is an ancient burial ground, that serves as the necropolis for the Ancient Capital of Egypt, Memphis. Saqqara is laced with soaring pyramids, such as the Step Tomb, built all the way back in the Third Dynasty. This spooky place will sure take you a step back in time.
8. Dead Sea | Israel
The Dead Sea is a big Salt Lake, bordered by Jordan and Israel and well-known for its high tourist activity. This wondrous body of water is the lowest place on earth and nine times as salty as the ocean, making it an excellent place for casual floating. The Dead Sea is mainly renowned for its remedial asphalt mud, which is said to heal various types of skin conditions.
9. Pamukkale | Turkey
Also referred to as “Cotton Castle,” Pamukkale is site unique for its blend of man-made and natural wonders. The place is unique because of its gigantic white terraces of travertine, that resemble a frozen waterfall, and countless hot springs scattered throughout. It’s abundance in breath-taking, natural marvels, has made Pamukkale the single most visited attractions in Turkey.
10. Dome of the Rock | Jerusalem
Dome of the Rock is a magnificent Islamic shrine plated in gold, located on the Temple Mount of Jerusalem. It is the oldest existing works of Islamic architecture and huge tourist attraction for those of the faith. Legend has it that it’s the place in which Muhammed rose to heaven, making it a particularly holy destination.