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RECOMMENDATION: Middle East, safe, non touristy ADVICE?

RECOMMENDATION: Middle East, safe, non touristy ADVICE?

Old Feb 12th, 2008, 05:30 AM
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RECOMMENDATION: Middle East, safe, non touristy ADVICE?

I'm looking for recommendations for a trip to the middle east. I'd love to go to Yemen but am receiving feedback that it is probably not safe enough right now. ANY ADVICE? Looking to see non westernized cultures, traditional living, not many tourists...THANKS!
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Old Feb 12th, 2008, 05:37 AM
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I haven't personally visited, but I recently received a brochure about 4x4 trips in Oman. Looks like an interesting experience to go out into the dunes with a local bedouin guide.

http://www.safaridrive.com/oman_home.htm
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Old Feb 12th, 2008, 05:46 AM
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I agree on Oman, where I have visited, and maybe also Syria, where I will visit in May 2009.

Saudi Arabia is fascinating, but you will need a connection to secure a business visa, which I did in 2001, and then I was free to travel around the country. Absent a business visa, you would need to join a high-end tour, which to me would be less appealing.

While not technically in the Middle East, Iran is in that part of the region, and would an obvious, and very safe, choice, notwithstanding the venom directed at that country by Washington, DC.
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Old Feb 12th, 2008, 05:56 AM
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Another suggestion, although not middle east, would be Ethiopia.
If you are interested in local culture and traditional living, this community tourism venture in Northern Ethiopia might of interest.
http://www.community-tourism-ethiopia.com/

I will be in Ethiopia next week and hope to check this out.
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Old Feb 12th, 2008, 06:42 PM
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Another vote for Oman. I visited there twice in the 90's when tourism was still a new concept. Absolutely loved it.

Not sure what it's like these days, but it's definitely worth considering.

Lived in Saudi for several years and couldn't imagine visiting as a tourist, which wasn't allowed when we lived there. It would certainly be different though. Keep in mind that Saudi can vary drastically from region to region.

Bahrain might also be worth a look -we used to visit frequently from Kuwait and Saudi, but haven't been there in several years.
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Old May 7th, 2008, 02:37 AM
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I am an American currently living in Kuwait. I write travel reviews for my website Bombastic Life.

I have been to Oman, Jordan, Bahrain, and Dubai (hated it) and would highly recommend Oman and Jordan for seeing the non-touristy side of life.

Jordan has Petra which is a must as well as Wadi Rum and some great souks.

Oman has so much to see that you will need a good week to see it all! They have a great old souk as well.

I have reviews of hotels/resorts and restaurants on my site http://www.bombasticlife.com as well if get to a point of planning your trip.

Do make a trip to the Middle East, it is a eye-opening and amazing place to visit.
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