The Middle East is famous for its rich history, diverse cultures and its astonishing architecture. From Dubai's man-made islands to Egypt's ancient pyramids, the Middle East has so much to offer that you will never get bored of it during a Middle East Ocean Cruise. Enjoy the aroma of fresh spices while taking a stroll in the Spice Souk will take your breath away. With cruise line volume buys plus our low everyday prices you can save up to 80% versus the brochure price! Book your Middle East cruise today with AffordableTours.com, your discounted cruise headquarters.Middle East Travel Guide
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Middle East Travel Guide
Middle East Cruises Highlights
- Cruise along the palm-shaped manmade islands of Dubai.
- Admire the beautifully constructed mosques of Abu Dhabi.
- Take a sunrise walk on the corniche of Doha while enjoying the view of the seafront accompanied by some of the tallest skyscrapers.
- Visit Jerusalem and have a chance to learn about some of the major religions in one of the oldest cities in the world.
- Let yourself get lost in the times of Gladiators while visiting the Colosseum in Rome.
- Take a cruise in the Mediterranean and enjoy some of the most popular cuisines of surrounding regions.
- Jordan's famous city of Petra is a must-visit if you are into history of ancient civilizations and kingdoms of the past.
Middle East Cruises Travel Tips
- Most of the countries covered in the cruise of the Middle East accept payments in either US Dollars or Euros. Visa and Master Cards are also accepted widely at local stores and for using public transport as well.
- Arabic is the major language in many Middle Eastern countries but there is general acceptability of English as well due to the huge number of expat settlements in these countries.
- Weather in the Middle East is generally very hot and humid but if your time of traveling is during winters, you will not face many problems. For travelers who are taking the cruise to the Middle East during the summers it is better to load up on those summer shorts and extra sunscreen as the temperatures can go as high as 50 degrees Celsius.
- Cities in the Middle Eastern countries are very well connected with highways and you can easily travel between cities, though there are some old cities and towns which lack this facility of modern infrastructure.
- There are many Muslim countries in the Middle East, in these areas public display of affection or wearing too revealing clothes could hurt the sentiments of the general population.
Middle East Cruises Things To Do
- Doha, Qatar
Qatar is one of the most developed countries in the Middle East. Doha, which is the capital of Qatar, is slowly and gradually becoming one of the top destinations for business and leisure tours in the Middle East. This city has a very diverse culture and gives you a lot of opportunities to explore the same as well. You can go for a walk on its showpiece seafront promenade or take a tour of its neighboring city that is being specially constructed for FIFA 2022.
Best Time To VisitThe sun in Doha can get really hot in the summers. Visit Doha somewhere between October and April when the weather is a bit on the cooler side.
You Should KnowDoha has its own small cruises, which the locals call "Dhow", taking an hour-long trip on this traditional Arabic boat while enjoying the sunset is well worth it. If you want to experience the true flavor of Middle Eastern shopping then you should surely visit Souq, where you will witness small vendors selling perfumes, spices, and handicrafts on the alleyways. The bus system in Doha can get a little crowded sometimes so a more convenient option is to use Uber which is available around the city and is also cheaper than the traditional Taxi service called "Karwa".
- Dubai, UAE
UAE comprises of seven states, which they call "Emirates", and Dubai is one of those Emirates. There is so much to see and do in Dubai that one trip might just not be enough. Just one visit to Dubai will make you fall in love with the place. Go for a Desert Safari if you like to do off-roading but if you are accompanied by kids then Wild Wadi waterpark should be your top priority.
Best Time To VisitJanuary and February are marked as the months of Dubai's shopping festival, and the weather is also favorable during those months, so it is better to plan your trip to Dubai around that timeline.
You Should KnowIf you are tired of traveling by sea you can take a helicopter ride and fly high to see the beauty of Dubai's palm-shaped islands. UAE is a Muslim country so restaurants and malls in Dubai are usually closed during the day in the month of Ramadan. Although restaurants will include a small tip in your bill, tipping is a common practice, so giving a small tip to a supermarket bagger or your hotel luggage carrier is considered a good gesture.
- Abu Dhabi, UAE
Another one of UAE's Emirate, Abu Dhabi is also the capital of the country. As compare to Dubai, you will witness a more prevalent Arabic culture in Abu Dhabi, because a greater proportion of expats live in Dubai. If you ever get a chance to visit Abu Dhabi don't forget to visit the exquisite Sheikh Zayed Mosque.
Best Time To VisitUsually, the best time to travel to Abu Dhabi is during the winter months of December and January but if you don't mind the heat and want to save a few bucks on hotel reservations, April and May are a more suitable choice.
You Should KnowIf you are passionate about cars, especially Ferrari then Yas Island is the place for you. It has a theme park called Ferrari World and it is all about Ferrari and Formula 1. There are designated smoking rooms in public areas for the convenience of smokers because smoking in public areas is banned by Abu Dhabi's Health Ministry. Abu Dhabi is considered one of the safest cities in the world due to its low crime rate so if you want to take a stroll at night, you are totally good to go.
- Salalah, Oman
Located on the southern side of Oman, Salalah is a city embraced by nature's bounties. The city famous for its Banana plantations is otherwise a desert land but during the monsoon, the desert terrain is transformed into a green landscape with occasional waterfalls as well. Safari in the mountains can be a perfect escape for you after a long day in the sea.
Best Time To VisitSalalah is well known in the Middle East because of its monsoon season which is why you should visit Salalah around June to August.
You Should KnowMuseum-lovers must ensure that they make a stop at Salalah because you wouldn't want to miss the opportunity to visit the Museum of Frankincense Land. A visit to the Museum is a great way to learn about the land. There are luxurious Omani hotels on the coastline of Salalah and you can enjoy your stay right by the beach. If you want to travel to farther areas of Salalah, lack of public transport can be an issue and you have to go for a taxi to travel within the city.
- Petra, Jordan
The ancient city of Petra dates back to the 4th Century B.C. It used to be a kingdom and now it is an important archeological and tourist site. A visit to a city like Petra takes you a thousand years in the historical times when the empires like these used to rule the world. A walk in the streets of this city will make you feel like you have traveled into the past and you start to feel the essence of how cities like these used to be.
Best Time To VisitThis place is usually crowded with people so it is better to visit Petra during autumn or spring. If you plan on visiting the ancient city, the timing for winter is 6 a.m to 4 p.m and for summers is 6 a.m to 6 p.m.
You Should KnowPetra is a UNESCO world heritage site. A trip around the ancient city of Petra is usually a few kilometers hike, but there are donkeys available if you don't feel like hiking, you can mount on top of a donkey to take the trail. Be cautious that these donkey rides are not regulated and may not be safe. In order to socialize more with the locals, it is always better to hire a Bedouin tour guide rather than a tour operator. It also costs less.
- Haifa (Tel Aviv), Israel
Haifa is a city full of culture, traditions, and history. This place is unmatchable due to its long preserved historical traditions. Israel has always been a country well-liked by tourists due to its diverse traditions and thousand years old history, which is preserved and practiced by the people of Israel to date. The mix of Palestinian and Israeli cuisine in Haifa will fulfill all your cravings for food.
Best Time To VisitTourism in Haifa is in its full swing during the months of March to April and September to November as spring and fall are the two most enjoyable seasons in Haifa.
You Should KnowThe beaches along the coast are really beautiful and you might even be tempted to take a dip, so don't forget to bring your swimwear when you are visiting Tel Aviv. Hebrew and Arabic both are spoken in this region so if you are familiar with any one of them you will make a lot of local friends in this city. You might have to walk a lot in this city so make sure you are wearing comfortable shoes and not carrying any extra weight.
Malta is a well-known honeymoon destination, due to its sandy beaches with a blue coastline and colorful buildings; it is considered a paradise for couples. In Malta, you can enjoy the Mediterranean cuisine while exploring the beautiful island which is very different from the rest of the Middle East.
Best Time To VisitSpring and early summers are considered the best times to visit Malta because the days are not so hot and the nights are cool. Also, annual festivals also tend to happen during those times.
You Should KnowCredit Cards are widely accepted in Malta and you wouldn't have to worry about paying cash in the local stores. The scenes from your cruise along the coast of Malta are not to be missed. Don't forget to visit the temples of Malta which will provide you an opportunity to learn the ancient history of this island nation.
- Rome, Italy
Rome, which was the capital of one of the greatest empires of the world, is now the capital city of Italy and a very popular tourist attraction. Let yourself go lost wandering the streets of Rome which still has the signs of the power it once had over the entire world. This Italian city will mesmerize you with its astounding architecture and monuments that tell the tale of its history.
Best Time To VisitRome is filled with tourists during the summers, which is considered the peak time for tourists. Although, it might get crowded and cost a little more the long sunny days of summer will give you a lot of time to explore the city.
You Should KnowThis is usually one of the endpoints in the Middle Eastern cruise ships due to its affiliation with the Mediterranean. Do visit the historical sites of Colosseum and Pisa Tower which are very well acclaimed for being in almost the same condition even after so long.
Middle East Cruise Packages
The Middle East has the most pleasant temperatures during the cooler months, however, the only place that experiences actual winter are the mountainous regions. In the more touristic cities, the averages are in the 50s. The temperatures in the summer reach the high 100s so it can be a bit uncomfortable to tour the area during this time.
- Winter - December to March - Good Season
The peak season for Middle East cruises is winters, from the month of December to March. This is usually considered the best time to take the Middle East Cruise. Most of the stopovers in this cruise are in hot and humid countries so in order to take full advantage of the trip it is better to take the cruise in winters rather than summers.
Middle East Cruises Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a Middle East Ocean Cruise?
Middle East Ocean cruises are famous because of their unique choice of destinations. Middle East Ocean cruise can be of any duration, usually ranging from 5 to 25 days. You will normally cruise along the Mediterranean towards the Gulf and through the Suez Canal.
- What’s included on a Middle East Ocean Cruise?
Middle East ocean cruises usually include all meals, all alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, stateroom, and onboard entertainment options in almost all of the basic packages. The number of facilities provided on the cruise depends on what kind of package you have selected.
- What’s the Best Cruise for a Middle East Ocean Cruise?
A lot of cruise lines take trips to the Middle East and the most famous ones are, MSC, Costa, Holland America, Royal Caribbean, Silversea, Seabourn, and Oceania.
- How Much Does a Middle East Ocean Cruise Cost?
Most of the packages for Middle East cruises cost $1,000 to $5,000 per person for a 4 to 15-day cruise. There are also some more luxurious cruises for the Middle East which can cost you over $7,000 per person.
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