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Highlights of the Middle East

Friday 3rd Jun 2022

Cruising in the Middle East brings a sense of luxury with the region’s 5-star amenities, sun-drenched beaches, and culture-rich cities. Relax on pristine beaches, splash out in air-conditioned malls, or haggle at authentic souks. There is warm sun all year round and many opportunities to check off a number of items on your bucket list, from seeing the Great Pyramids of Giza to lavish shopping in Dubai malls.

The rich history of the Middle East is juxtaposed with modern facilities so you can enjoy the comforts of home in the sunshine, whilst also experiencing the culture in depth. Cruises here appeal to a wide range of guests due to the variety of sights; discover Old Arabia in Oman, see the modern delights of the United Arab Emirates, or visit the Pei-designed Museum of Islamic Art in Doha.

The Middle East, located between Africa and Asia, has an all-year-round holiday climate and beaches that are second to none. The weather in the winter months is slightly cooler, yet still sunny, however if you enjoy the heat then the summer months provide unbeatable weather.

Abu Dhabi Sheik Zayed Mosque The Dead Sea The Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai Camels on the Beach in Dubai Nizwa Souq in Oman The Sphinx on the Giza Plateau
  • Bahrain

    Bahrain, also known as “the Kingdom of the Two Seas”, is adorned with thousand-year-old culture and hails this name due to its waters sharing borders with Qatar in the south and Saudi Arabia in the west. Bahrain hosts the Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix Formula One race, and is a must see when visiting. The true gem of Bahrain is its capital, Manama, which boasts beautiful scenery and amazing architecture such as its outstanding World Trade Centre. A shopper’s highlight would be to visit Bab al Bahrain and explore the large souk with its gold, textiles, Arabic artefacts, and quality watches.

  • Oman

    Graced with ancient ruins, fortresses, palaces, beaches, wadis, deserts, caves, fjords, and fringed with the waters of the Sea of Makran, Oman is one of the most fascinating destinations in the world. The Sultanate of Oman is largely undiscovered by mainstream tourism and its capital Muscat is becoming largely popular. Muscat is an oasis of greenery and is home to one of the most magnificent mosques in the world, with its polished marble, handmade carpets and dazzling chandeliers. This port city is backed by the arid Hajar mountains, meaning you can trek deserts at dawn, spot dolphins at sundown, and enjoy plenty of Omani hospitality in between. Snorkel in idyllic coves in Khasab and relax on the beaches whilst catching a glimpse of dolphins in the distance.

  • Qatar

    Like many other Middle Eastern destinations, Qatar is an ancient city in the midst of a modern renaissance. Qatar comprises of rich desert, which can be explored on a desert safari, and the Arabian Gulf shoreline with its beautiful sunny beaches and warm sand dunes. Qatar’s capital Doha is a culture-rich city which offers many highlights. Explore the abundance of alleyways and winding lanes of Souq Waqif, a traditional marketplace which sells traditional garments, spices and souvenirs, or take a Dhow cruise along Al-Corniche, a seaside promenade curving around Doha Bay. Qatar has serene blue waters and stunning architecture which makes for unforgettable views.

  • Egypt

    This country linking Northeast Africa with the Middle East is not only famous for its ancient artefacts but also for its warm, sandy beaches. Sharm El Sheikh is a resort town and is known for its luxury beaches, restaurants, clear waters, and extensive coral reefs. Famous for its ancient Egyptian history and archaeological wonders, it is possible to visit Cairo and the Great Pyramids of Giza or explore the Valley of the Kings and Queens on a luxury Nile cruise.

  • UAE

    The United Arab Emirates is famed for its capital Abu Dhabi and equally glamourous city, Dubai. Abu Dhabi and Dubai, in recent years, have become increasingly popular on the tourist scene. Along with fine modern architecture, Dubai is home to the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa, from which you can view the dazzling metropolis skyline. The ultimate leisure, entertainment, and shopping resort, the Mall of Emirates, can be found not far from the famous Palm and is a shopping dream with its long list of designer shops. Abu Dhabi is equally as captivating with its stunning Corniche and modern architecture, such as the Louvre Abu Dhabi – which is described as France’s largest cultural project abroad. A visit to the Sheik Zayed Mosque to admire its polished white floors and golden details should not be missed.

  • Israel

    Israel is home to a wealth of biblical and archaeological sites. From Ashdod it is possible to visit Tel Aviv where you can take a stroll down the most beautiful tree-lined boulevard and embrace the classic Bauhaus architecture or relax on its breath-taking beaches. It is also possible to visit Holy sites like Jerusalem, here you can see the Mount of Olives, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Dome of the Rock and perhaps take a journey through the Judean Hills to Bethlehem and the Church of the Nativity. Haifa is one of Israel’s most beautiful cities and here you can wander in lush gardens at the Carmel Nature Reserve or explore the ancient cave of the Prophet Elijah which is believed to be the refuge where the prophet hid from King Ahab and Queen Jezebel.

Blue Water Holidays offer a wide selection of Middle East and Africa Cruises

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