Teachers and other expatriates living in the Middle East have explored a number of its vibrant destinations.

Some of the stunning photos that you are about to see are actual contributions from educators here in the region, who have trekked to these locations to experience the warmth of the people and the rich offerings that each place offers.

We hope to get you excited with these gorgeous photos of a few of the Middle East destinations that you should add to your bucket list.

From popular locations in the UAE to key tourist destinations in the region, get ready to check out some fun places to travel to in this edition of Travel Snapshots.


UAE
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The Burj Khalifa. Photo Credit: http://www.burjkhalifa.ae/

Dubai: Burj Khalifa – undoubtedly one of the most easily recognised structures in Dubai (and globally), the iconic Burj Khalifa remains an important feature of the ever-developing Dubai landscape. The award winning structure is a key attraction for both residents and visitors to the bustling Metropolis.


The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. Photo Credit: Richard Simapili.
The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. Photo Credit: Richard Simapili.

Abu Dhabi: SZGM – the stunning beauty and majesty of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi have made it a must-see location for thousands of UAE residents and tourists. The mosque is also known as the final resting place for H.H. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, (MPBUH) Founding Father of the UAE.


Qatar
A photo of Qatar's landscape. Photo Credit: Richie Chin.
A photo of Qatar’s landscape. Photo Credit: Richie Chin.

Doha: Recognised as one of the New7Wonders Cities, Doha or “the big tree” is Qatar’s capital city. It is also the fastest growing city. In 2010, Doha was chosen as the Arab Capital of Culture. Some of its key attractions include museums, stadiums and stunning skyscrapers. Qatar will be hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Photo Credit: Richie Chin.


Turkey
The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. Photo Credit: Carolyn Lee.
The Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. Photo Credit: Carolyn Lee.

Istanbul: Istanbul has been known as one of the more popular destinations in the Middle East for people living in the UAE. It’s rich heritage, culture, friendly people and exciting attractions all add to the lure of Istanbul. Unfortunate events over the past few months have impacted tourism. However, Istanbul should bounce right back!


Egypt
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The Bab Zuweila. Photo Credit: Wikipedia/JMCC1.

Cairo: Many people have held a deep fascination with visiting the pyramids in Egypt. The City of Cairo is the capital of Egypt and is also its largest city. Egypt can be likened to an open museum with monuments from the different historical periods on display everywhere. The pyramids of Giza, the Egyptian museum, Old Cairo and Bab Zuweila are among a few of its top attractions.


Jordan
The city of Amman. Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Wikipedia/Rami Tarawneh.
The city of Amman. Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Wikipedia/Rami Tarawneh.

Amman: The Jordanian capital boasts the country’s largest population. It is also the home to ancient ruins. The tourism sector of this city has been experiencing a steady boom over the years. It is the 93rd most visited city in the world and the 5th most visited Arab city. Amman is known as the Middle East’s hub for medical tourism. Of note, Amman is said to be one of the most liberal and westernised cities of the Arab world.


 Oman
The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque in Oman. Photo Credit:
The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque in Oman. Photo Credit: Richard Simapili.

Muscat: It’s always nice to visit our neighbour, Oman. Many expats have trekked across the border to explore this beautiful country, which is merely hours away depending on where you are in the UAE. Muscat is Oman’s port capital and has a vibrant history that dates back to antiquity. A few of its best-known attractions are Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, the Bait al Zubair Museum and the Mutrah Corniche among others. A recent (January 2016) Forbes article describes Muscat as “Exotic, historic, unusual, adventurous and geologically stunning.”


 Jordan, Palestine and Israel
Educator, Betina Bennett takes pictures by the Dead Sea. Photo Credit: Betina Bennett.
Educator, Bettina Bennett takes pictures by the Dead Sea. Photo Credit: Bettina Bennett.

The Dead Sea (bordered by Jordan, Palestine and Israel): For most of us, The Dead Sea was merely a Biblical reference that we heard about as children. For those of us who now call the Middle East home, visiting can now become a reality. Known as “The Sea of Salt”, “The Sea of Death” and “Salt Sea”, The Dead Sea is a salt lake and the deepest hypersaline lake in the world. It has been an attraction for thousands of years. It is also a popular location for health research.


Kuwait 
Kuwait City Skyline. Photo Credit:
Kuwait City Skyline. Photo Credit: Maryam’s flicker.

Kuwait City: Are you interested in shopping, scouting out a few museums or simply relaxing and enjoying gorgeous architecture? Visit Kuwait. Boasting a booming economy, Kuwait is known for home-grown theatre. Kuwaiti soap operas are among the most-watched in the Arab world. Among its attractions are the Kuwait Towers, Al Hamra Tower, Seif Palace and Water Towers among others. 

Thanks for reading. Go ahead and share these exciting locations with your friends and colleagues who love to travel!

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