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No Middle East Thread??

Discussion in 'Asia' started by Phileas80, May 2, 2016.

  1. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    It seems as if there is no middle east thread on here, as I've never been to a middle eastern country I'd love to have some info on places to visit. I've heard good things about Dubai and Doha for example.

    Anyone here been?
     
  2. djordjem87

    djordjem87 Member

    I haven't been there I have several friends who are still there. It really depends how you manage to settle there. If you find a good job and do it fast you're going to be quite okay but in general, these countries are very beautiful. They have oriental look and even the food is amazing. To people who live there it is probably a bit boring but to us who read a lot of detective stories and similar books we see adventure there. That is what I really like about those countries. They seem interesting. It is too bad the things are what they are in some of them.
     
  3. amelia88

    amelia88 Active Member

    I've also had a few people I know that have visited Dubai - it tends to be a fairly frequent stopover point on long flights from places like Australia to Europe and vice versa, and having friends traveling from those places tends to often see them stop in Dubai. It's really become quite a travel destination in itself these days. One thing I saw that was really cool in Dubai was that they have a giant indoor skiing center, which is rather amusing for a country that's essentially a desert landscape! But I thought that was pretty awesome, if I was visiting there I think I would make a point to stop there, if for no other reason than the fact it's bizarre to go to the snow there!
     
  4. Corzhens

    Corzhens Active Member

    I agree to this thread because Dubai is now a major tourist destination. Unlike before when tourists would ignore any invitation from a Middle East country, now they have Dubai which showcases fancy architectures especially that tall building by the shore called Burj Al Arab. They also have a theme park that is a winter land with real snow. And the Miracle Garden is a great sight with real plants.

    Another Middle Eastern country that is worth going to is Qatar. A small city state but has nice malls and some parks as well. By the way, I have a standing invitation to visit a friend in Turkey, she's been there for more than 10 years now.
     
  5. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    Yes it seems a lot of visitors to that region are either in Dubai on a stopover or working in Qatar or Saudi Arabiaand the UAE long term. The wages paid there are very competitive and obviously attract serious professionals however the general lifestyle is quite different to most western countries. It will be interesting to hear how holidaymakers deal with those differences.
     
  6. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747 Active Member

    Well the forum is based on continents, and middle east is not a continent. :p I don't see why we can't make separate threads about destinations in the middle east under this Asia part of the forum.
     
  7. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    I was also going to say I would have thought that the middle Eastern countries would have been talked about under this Asia thread, as like you say the middle east isn't a continent and that's what the threads seem to be based on.

    Another place to mention that used to be popular was Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt, but lately after all the trouble in the region that's now more of a ghost town, and probably not a place to recommend at the moment.
     
  8. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    Yeap good point, the middle east falls into different catergories as far as continents are concerned, and Sharm El Sheikh is located in North Africa, that's helped me think of a new topic as I've been planning to visit Egypt for years in order to see the pyramids.
     
  9. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747 Active Member

    Actually it's in Asia as the red sea / Suez is what is considered to be the limit where Africa changes into Asia. If you want to include the Sinai peninsula in Africa then Israel has to be an African country too. :p
     
    pwarbi likes this.
  10. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    I'm not getting into the Africa/Asia debate, haha. Sharm El Sheikh is on the border, and most people would say it's classed as Asia but wherever you want to say it is, it's still not the flourishing tourist destination that it once was.
     
  11. Coco

    Coco Active Member

    Hi! I love Doha in Qatar. Here's a few places that I can recommend to you if ever you go there:
    • The Arabian Sanctuary or the Al Maha Sanctuary:
    Al-Maha-Sanctuary.

    This is called the Arabian Oryx, which is an endangered species of deer. They have curved horns and they are milky white in colour. The sanctuary has about 1,000 of these amazing Arabian Oryx.​
    • Doha Forts:
    doha-fort-2.

    The forts are evidences of the great architecture in Doha even during the ancient times. The forts feature museums and handicrafts that showcase the culture and tradition of the ancient people in Doha.​
    • Doha Corniche Boat Ride:
    36d0fecd709dd0e6884dae80f66aa133.

    A trip to Doha won't be complete without cruising in their "Dhow" around the Corniche. It's especially beautiful during night time as the lights around the city are mesmerising.
    I hope this helps!
     
  12. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747 Active Member

    Thanks Coco. It's nice that you find the time to always dig up a few pictures to show us!
    That last one though... way too much neon for me. Both the dhow itself as well as the city behind it. Too many neon lights remind me of those cheap motels in American movies which are always filled with prostitutes and drug addicts. :D
     
    pwarbi likes this.
  13. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    I'm kind of feeling the same aswell regarding the colours and the lights, and it just looks like a poor man's version of Vegas!

    I'm sure it's very nice, it just doesn't look it in my opinion, although I'm sure that some would disagree.
     
  14. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    Great pics Coco, nice variation of urban and rural settings. It gives a nice illustration to an area few of us have any experience of.
     
  15. Rachel

    Rachel Member

    I haven't been to either of these places but I have friends who have been to Dubai and loved it - for some reason it doesn't appeal to me - but that could be because they spent the entire trip drinking in Western bars and not really exploring any of the city or the surrounding area. Doha looks amazing and there's enough to do to keep everyone happy. I'm going to research Doha a bit more because I really do like the look of it. Thank you for sharing those photos.
     
  16. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747 Active Member

    Dubai is a very artificial place... I didn't really enjoy it. I spent a lot of time in Abu Dhabi and thought it was nicer, it's a bit more quiet and less flashy but still has everything you need. Neither place really has a lot of tourist attractions though, but I must say that the Burj Khalifa and especially the fountains were breathtaking.
     
  17. tgthewriter1

    tgthewriter1 New Member

    Some countries in the middle east are at war. War is probably the main reason why you do not hear about threads on this subject. Right now, there is a holy war going on in that country. I do not know exactly what the war is about, but what i do know is that the war is connected to religion.
     
  18. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    True but I think the main reason is just that the region is located between the continents listed in the forums. There are various locations in that area that are great for foreign travellers. War is unfortunate but is happening all over the globe and it doesn't motivate people to avoid whole continents.
     
  19. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    What's happening in the middle east is appalling, but that doesn't mean that the countries there aren't rich in history and aren't worth talking about, so I agree.

    While now isn't the time to go and visit (obviously) there are or should I say was, some beautiful parts of the world in the middle east that should be talked about otherwise they'll just be forgotten.
     
  20. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747 Active Member

    Yes. And there are still quite many countries which you can visit relatively safely, so it's not like the whole region is off limit simply because a few of the countries are in turmoil.
     
  21. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    You're right, and its definitely not the whole region. Having said that though, even though we shouldn't let the terrorists win and stop us from doing what we want to do, I'd be very wary of going to or even through and across any country around that area for now.
     
  22. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    I think you'd be fine in Qatar or The UAE, don't forget the world cup is scheduled for Qatar so there are stable countries in the region.
     
  23. pwarbi

    pwarbi Member

    While your right, I think the world cup being held in Qatar doesn't have anything to do with it being a stable country, but more to do with how much money they have got.

    With the way FIFA are run, Syria or Afghanistan could have won that bid to host the world cup if they had bribed enough people.
     
  24. Phileas80

    Phileas80 Member

    Lol, being a big football fan I can only laugh. FIFA is really messed up. In fact I think I'll start a football thread on here.
     
  25. christine

    christine New Member

    Dubai is an open city and it has been a land of opportunities for many nationalities. Many would go there as tourist, find a job, and have their visas converted to working visas. Some Singapore and Hong Kong hotels are known jump off points for Asians who want to arrange a tourist visa to UAE or Dubai.

    My brother-in-law holds a permanent visa as a regular employee in a British-owned company in Ras Al Khaimah while my sister rents villas and subleases the rooms and bed spaces. She's presently running 4 villas and making huge profits from them.

    I think, however, that these are all artificial. Middle East countries are still reeling from the huge drop in oil prices. Oil and related industries are affected and many companies have actually closed shop. We don't know when the bubble will burst, but Dubai's real estate has been under scrutiny for the past several years.
     
  26. I think the media has been doing a great job at besmirching the image of the Middle East. When the average person thinks of the Middle East, his mind is filled with all the images of war and death shown in the media. I remember meeting someone who was studying in Egypt at the height of the popular uprising there. He told me that the situation is generally peaceful there. There wasn't much danger unless one purposely go to the areas where there are rallies. So I think the Middle East is still a good destination for a holiday. We just need more information on the situation on the ground.
     
  27. Valentino

    Valentino Member

    If you are a shopaholic and love partying then Dubai is the best place to "treat yourself."

    Doha on other hand is a little quieter but as it's only a 40 minute flight away from Dubai you could visit both cities in one day if you so desire (and have the money to spend, that is).
     
  28. christine

    christine New Member

    Pre-Ramadan sales are the best in most Middle East countries. I've asked my brother-in-law to buy me some gold jewelries in Qatar during those sales period and I was surprised when I had them appraised in my country and found that they are worth about 30% more than their purchase price.

    Same is true in Dubai and I can't blame my countrymen for preferring to purchase consumer goods in this city and sending them to their families back home.
     
  29. Just curious. Are things really expensive in your country? My housemate has a girlfriend is The Philippines. Every few months he would send her a big box of things, even instant noodles. He told me that those things cost many times more where his girlfriend lives.
     
  30. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    Well, I'm kind of scared of going there because there's a war in the Middle East and you never know what's gonna happen next. Of course, not every single country is involved but still I'm a bit concerned. Foreign visitors are kind of a target for ISIS which, unfortunately, gone global.