My Travel Guide to the Arab World
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The Arab World offers the visitor a splendid variety of natural sceneries, historical sites, antique monuments, culture and atmosphere. Add to this the warmth & friendliness of its people, and you have a perfect travel experience.

This travel guide summarizes, country by country, the main tourist attractions in the Arab World *.

Travel to history, culture & captivating scenery
*The travel guide does not cover Iraq and the Palestinian territories. (© Allan)

A Friendly and Welcoming World!

The Arab countries are generally among the world's safest to visit. As long as you keep normal safety precautions and exercise common sense, you are very unlikely to become a victim of crime.

Many visitors to the Arab World are positively surprised by the spontaneous hospitality and an ever-readiness to help strangers.

Be Prepared for Changed Rules!

Rules and regulations about visas and other official documents often change. Long before travelling you are advised to check all formal entry requirements with the embassy or consulate of the country you are planning to visit.

Get to know as much as you can about the visas, like fees, validity periods, and even modes of payment. For example, tourist visas issued on arrival in Qatar, can only be paid for using a credit card.

Be Prepared for Changed Routes!

Tourists in Giza, Egypt

If you are planning to cross by land from one country to another, be aware that roads may get closed and transportation routes could get cancelled. Any journeys including crossing of borders between countries should be carefully planned in advance, to avoid any delays and hassles.

It's a common phenomenon in the Arab World, that different persons have different ideas about what is allowed and what is not, what is open and what is closed, which way to go to a certain place, etc. Trying to get correct information isn't always straightforward. Be patient and take it with a smile...

"When in Rome, do as the Romans do..."

Attitudes towards things like photography and dress code do vary between countries and regions of the Arab World. A modest, low-key approach is the best insurance for a successful trip

Use your camera with discretion and - when taking photos of people - always ask for their permission. The right to refuse getting photographed is a matter of personal integrity, and should be respected.

Dress code is another issue where sound judgement is essential. Revealing dress causes lots of attention and could in some places get you into trouble. Dressing conservatively is the best solution.

A few simple rules to consider:

  1. Respect local norms and values.

  2. Dress modestly.

  3. Ask permission before taking a photo of a person or shooting him/her on video. DO NOT take photos of anything related to national security (police officers and -vehicles, military personnel and -vehicles, border crossings, border areas, airports, sea ports, government buildings, etc.).

  4. If you are a male, be reserved in your interaction with Arab women.

  5. Keep a low profile.

  6. Don't stare at things that seem unfamiliar.

  7. Avoid eye contact with bothersome persons. Ignore them and just walk away. Don't act like you're annoyed. Don't use offensive language or gestures.

  8. Don't lose your temper, whatever happens.

  9. Don't take things very much to heart. Have a relaxed attitude to shortcomings.

  10. Keep the different time concept in mind. Expressions like "five minutes" or "just now", mean something quite different in Cairo and Casablanca than they do in London or Los Angeles. Always expect things to take more time than what you are used to back home.

With good planning and a sound attitude, you are very likely going to enjoy your visits to this fascinating and colourful part of the world!

To read about a particular country, click on that country's name in the sidebar.
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