Although most people think of Europe when looking for a winter getaway, the Middle East is filled with perfect destinations for the chillier months. From mountains where you can ski and enjoy the full winter experience, to beaches for those who simply don’t like the cold – the region has it all. So when picking where to head to on a winter break, consider the Middle East for a unique and unforgettable holiday.
For anyone who enjoys nightlife, Beirut is the perfect place to go. This won’t be your typical cozy holiday, chilling under the covers and sitting by the fireplace. Beirut is vibrant and pumping, with several popular clubs and bars to pick from and late nights for both residents and visitors. Winter does not slow the city down, making this the ideal destination for those who love a good party.
Forget heading to Aspen in order to ski, Faraya provides visitors with the perfect snowy hills for them to ski and snowboard. Filled with cabins, this is a great place for those who have done Europe one too many times and are looking for something new to do this winter. Here, travelers can take in beautiful views and get active at the same time.
The cedar tree is portrayed in the Lebanese flag and is one of the main symbols of the country. The Cedars is also one of the most beautiful places for tourists to visit in Lebanon. One of the highest points in the country, this is a fantastic place for winter sports and to take in nature. Here, you can enjoy the awe inspiring view of the snow and the sky blending into one during winter.
United Arab Emirates
For a brand new winter experience, why not head to the beaches of Dubai? The city is known for its excruciatingly hot summers, but it has perfect weather in winter. Yes, winter is beach season in this city, so pack your swimsuit. And if you still with to see snow, you can just check out Ski Dubai for an unique experience.
Much like its neighbor Dubai, Abu Dhabi has perfect weather during winter. This is the perfect time of the year to enjoy outdoor activities, such as visiting Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and going to the beach at the Corniche. The city is also very family oriented, with activities for all ages, it is the perfect place to bring the young ones on a holiday.
For a complete contrast to the typical winter holiday, head to one of the many beach resorts in Fujairah. This Emirate is best known for being the only one located on the East Coast of the UAE and is one of the country’s residents’ favorite places to enjoy in winter due to perfect beach weather. In Fujairah, visitors can do anything from snorkeling to camping.
For all history enthusiasts, Petra is the ultimate destination in the Middle East no matter what time of the year. This archaeological sight is one of Jordan’s most popular touristic attractions. This is only made better during the winter months, as tourists can take the walk through the Petra walls while enjoying the refreshing, chilly breeze.
This salt lake is widely known around the world for its beauty. People from all over travel to the Dead Sea in order to see one of the lowest points on Earth, at over 430 meters below sea level. This is one of the most epic trips you can take in your lifetime and you should head here no matter what time of the year.
Muscat is the city where mountains and the desert meet, forming a breathtaking geographical sight. The city has a vibrant culture, as well as being a port city, meaning you can enjoy the city and the sea. Additionally, Oman is very popular for its hikes, such as the Hajar Mountains, which are much more enjoyable during winter when temperatures are cooler.
This coastal city located in the south of Oman is certainly one of the most beautiful ones in the country. Arriving in winter means missing the Salalah‘s famous monsoon season which extends from July to September, this is the perfect place to enjoy hikes in the city’s mountains as well as pleasant weather, since summer may get a bit too hot.
Like most other Middle Eastern cities, Manama has extremely hot summers, therefore the best time to visit the capital of Bahrain is during winter. Manama has been designated as the Capital of Arab Culture and should definitely be on everyone’s itinerary when coming to the Middle East in order to take in its unique skyline, as well as traditions.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.