Awe-inspiring deserts, starry skies, fairytales palaces and glimmering mosques: welcome to the Middle East, the gateway to Asia, easily accessible from Europe and yet so different. Here you'll find Egypt, with its ancient pyramids, sphynxes, the peaceful flow of the Nile and the memory of the great pharaohs. But if you prefer a more relaxing vacation, here are also the beaches of Sharm El Sheik, with the resorts and the crystal clear sea, a perfect diving spot.
Iran, once known as Persia, is a triumph of colorful mosques and charming palaces: you will be amazed by cities like Shiraz, Isfahan and Yazd, getting lost in their squares and bazaars, while giant fountains and the multi-colored glass windows of religious buildings will leave you speechless. And what about Turkey? Istanbul is a city that has no rivals in terms of charm and beauty, from the Blue Mosque, or Hagia Sophia, to Topkapi Palace and the Grand Bazaar. Fly over the moon landscape of Cappadocia on a hot-air balloon: you'll never forget the emotions you'll feel.
If you are charmed by the idea of exploring the places mentioned in the Bible on your tour, then Israel is your ideal destination. This troubled land, meeting point of the three great religions, is a challenging trip, for those who want to put their certainties to the test. Jerusalem with the Weeping Wall is an unmissable starting point, then let yourself be overwhelmed by the lively atmosphere of Tel Aviv, travel to the Dead Sea and be enraptured by klezmer music and the ancient Hebrew culture.
In nearby Jordan the ruins of Petra and the marvelous city carved in the rocks await, together with Wadi Rum desert and Mount Nebo, where Moses is thought to be buried. If you are looking for a rejuvenating hassle-free vacation, there is glamorous Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, with its huge skyscrapers, the 5-star hotels, the belly-dancers and majestic Burj Khalifa. Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait and Oman are also ideal destinations for relaxing vacations, between fabulous beaches and desert safaris, maybe with a camel ride to top it off.
The Middle East, or Near East, will also tempt you with its cuisine, thanks to the many culinary traditions making this region unique. Taste the typical kebabs and sweet baklawa in Turkey, while the Hebrew cuisine is closely related to religion: the food that can be consumed by a Hebrew according to the Torah is called Kosher or Kasher. In Israel you won't resist to hummus, cous cous, falafel and Purim pastry. All across the Middle East the taboulè is quite popular, a dish which is served as a starter, probably from Lebanon, made of salad, aromatic herbs, tomatoes and onions.
It won't be difficult to be fascinated by the magic, sounds and flavours of the Middle East: follow the tips of our travel experts, choose the most suitable destination for you, design your dream tailormade tour from scratch and discover the secrets of this magnificent and mysterious land, bordering Asia, Europe and Africa.