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Middle Eastern Marvels – 2 – 13 Days Tour

0
  • 13 Days
  • Max Guests : 20
  • Wifi Available
  • Apr 13 - 25

Tour Details

LEBANON
Lebanon is located in the heart of the Middle East but, believe it or not, over 40 per cent of its population belongs to different branches of Christianity, including Protestants, Armenian Apostolic, Greek Orthodox and Melkite Catholics, just to name a few. Today, both Muslims and Christians coexist together, in peace and this can be seen not only in the Lebanese daily life but also in the city’s architecture.

An absolutely enchanted corner of the Mediterranean, there are many reasons why you should travel to Lebanon. The food is legendary, its stormy past, too. There are countless things to do in Lebanon, many places to visit, people to meet and stories to tell.

From the hipster cafés and underground clubs of Beirut to Palestinian and Syrian refugee camps, remote Christian monasteries, the most impressive Roman ruins, the best food and wine in the region, combined with our beloved Middle Eastern chaos and souks, Lebanon is an often misunderstood and underrated country which, despite its small size, is home to huge cultural diversity, adaptable to any kind of traveller and budget.

SYRIA
Syria is a great country, home to one of the oldest civilizations ever, so visiting Syria from a tourism perspective is an absolute must!

Syria is one of the larger countries of the Middle East and shares its borders to the north with Turkey, to the east with Iraq, with Jordan and Israel to the south, and with Lebanon to the south-west. An added natural beauty is its short coastline on the east Mediterranean Sea.

Syria is epic. Visiting Syria is an enriching experience. The Syrians are welcoming people, really friendly. In northern Syria, not too far north of the little pocket where the last communities of Aramaic speakers live, lie Syria’s mysterious Dead Cities, “780 abandoned settlements dating back to between the fifth and eighth centuries.”

There are also remnants of an Iron Age temple from around 1200 BC. There’s so much history in Syria — Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek, the Silk Road, the Crusades. But this region — probably the entire country — is seriously under-touristed. Seeing these lesser-known ruins would certainly be on my itinerary. Syria….an experience worth living.

JORDAN
Many tourists don’t even think of visiting Jordan, but the country is filled with staggering beauty and diversity. Jordan is the perfect introduction to the wondrous world of the Middle East, with its generous people, stunning natural landscapes, and iconic historical sites

Jordan is a young state that occupies an ancient land, one that bears the traces of many civilizations. Separated from ancient Palestine by the Jordan River, the region played a prominent role in biblical history.

Jordan is called the “Switzerland of the Middle East”: Jordan assures a peaceful and stable political climate. Jordan is among centre countries of the Middle East. Despite the ongoing political movements alongside Jordan, it is politically neutral country and is always committed to cooperate with all parties without going deep into problems of the Middle East.

Jordan offers a glimpse of everything: Petra’s treasury, Jerash and its ancient Roman ruins, the Bedouins heritage at Wadi Rum and its spectacular desert scenery, the crusader castles and the breath-taking view of the Dead Sea

Jordan is a kingdom layered in antiquity, from the work of Nabataean stonemasons to characters such as Moses and Lawrence of Arabia; from ancient cities and Biblical sites to desert castles, Crusader forts, and Byzantine mosaics.

This ancient culture belies the fact that it is also a modern country, with good infrastructure, a thriving business and arts scene, and first-class hotels, restaurants, and shopping opportunities. The contrast between the old and new is astonishing.

Price
From1,985€
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Price Includes:

  • Accommodation with Breakfast Lebanon, Syria, Jordan (4*- 3*).
  • English speaking professional guide (Syria – Jordan).
  • Local guide in (Lebanon).
  • Transfer from Beirut Airport/to hotel and from Amman Hotel/to Amman Airport.
  • Transport.
  • Approvals for visa.
  • Security clearance.
  • Entrance fees to all sites mentioned in the program.
  • Departure tax.
  • Assistance 24/24 on mobile phone, in Syria.
  • Tips in hotels

Price Excludes:

  • Airline tickets to Beirut & from Amman – approximate fares to be expected LIS-FRA-BEY €515 per person, one suitcase. ** LIS-DXB-BEY €583 per person, one suitcase. ** AMM-FRA-LIS €670 per person, one suitcase. **
  • Drinks, Lunch, Dinner.
  • Personal expenses.
  • The cost of the visa at border; for Europeans (60 Euros or 70 $).
  • PCR Test (100 $) for non - vaccinated.
  • Tips for guide and driver.
  • Travel Insurance – we recommend World Nomads https://www.worldnomads.com/

** pricing advised is an estimate value based on survey performed in May22.

Extra:

– Plane ticket reservation: €30

Itinerary

Day 1 - 13 Apr 2024 - Arrival – Beirut

Meeting at the airport according to the schedule of your arrival.
Transfer to the hotel.
Dinner and overnight at the hotel.

Day 2 - 14 Apr 2024: Beirut – Beit Eddine – Sidon – Tyre – Beirut

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure towards Beit Eddine and visit of the Palace.
Continue to Sidon. 

Sidon (or Saïda): Port city of the Lebanese coast, mentioned to in many documents since the fourteenth century.It was, for a long time, a very active shopping center.
Dominated by a citadel and open to a port, the third in Lebanon, it continues, as in the past, to be surrounded by vegetable gardens, banana and lemon trees. And while its old quarters still retain their medieval charm, its main streets are lined with modem shops where all kinds of goods and pastries accumulate.                                                                              

Continue to Tyre.                                                                              
Originally built on an island, Tyr, the Phoenician, was the queen of the seas.
Her wealth was derived from her colonies scattered on the shores of the Mediterranean, but especially from the purple industry. Thus, it was the focus of the great conquerors of antiquity, including the Babylonian Nebuchadnezzar and the Macedonian Alexander the Great.                                                            


To Beirut.

Day 3 - 15 Apr 2024: Beirut – Byblos – Tripoli – Crac des Chevaliers Al- Mishtaya

Breakfast at the hotel.
Departure to Byblos                                                                                 
Located 40 km north of Beirut, Byblos is one of the oldest cities in the world. Human presence has been registered on this same site, since about 9000 years ago.                                                                                      

Continue to Tripoli.                                                                                    
The second largest city in Lebanon after Beirut. Its name comes from the confederation of three Phoenician cities (Tire, Sidon and Arwad in Syria) that were established there in the fourth century BC. It is for this reason that the Greeks called it Tripolis.
Cross the border into Syria and continue to the Crac des Chevaliers, the most famous fortress of the Middle Ages.                                         

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 4 - 16 Apr 2024: Al-Mishtaya – Apamea – Aleppo

Breakfast at the hotel. Visit the Crac des Chevaliers.                                                                                       
Crac des Chevaliers: Famous Fortress of the Middle Ages. It is the symbol of an era of bloody struggles between Muslims and Crusaders. The crusaders made it the basic element of their system of strongholds on the coast.                                                                                   

Continue to Apamea.                                                                                 
The city of Apamea was founded around 300 BC by Seleucos I and named in honor of his wife Apama. It became a flourishing city and great figures of history stayed there: Cleopatra, Mark Antony, Septimius Severus and Emperor Caracalla.                                                                                               

The city is distinguished by its long ramparts and its main artery lined with twisted columns. As well as its Roman theatre, one of the largest known ancient theatres, whose scene is more than 145 meters                                                                                                                                                                        

Continue to Aleppo.

Day 5 - 17 Apr 2024: ALEPPO – The second city of Syria

A flourishing metropolis since the 3rd millennium BC, Aleppo fighting with Damascus for the title of the world’s oldest continuously inhabited city. The old city has undoubtedly the most beautiful souks of the Middle East.
Lunch during the visit.                                                                                                      

The citadel stands in the middle of the city and dominates it from the height of its fifty meters. It has admirably designed towers and is distinguished by its entrances made with perfection to prevent any enemy intrusion and its iron gates.                                             
Caravanserais: They were intended for the accommodation of traders on the move and their goods. They are famous for their decorated facades, high arched entrances and huge wooden doors that closed at nightfall.                                                                                                    

The Souks: The old souks covered with Aleppo are distinguished by their coffered vaults and their enormous cupolas. Most date back to the 15th and 16th centuries. These are real living museums that offer usa true image of what were the commercial districts and the animation that reigned in the Middle Ages.

Each souk specializes in selling a type of product. ln the charming souks you can also find authentic Bedouin handicrafts, as well as rugs, fabrics and many varieties of delicacies to enjoy, such as the famous Aleppo pistachios, honey-based pastries, almonds and fruits. dry that will satisfy the greediest. You will do the best shopping in the Orient …
Aleppo museum.
Overnight at the hotel.

Day 6 - 18 Apr 2024 - Aleppo – Palmyra- Damascus

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure towards Saint Simeon.                                                                                      Saint Simeon – City dedicated to the hermit at the column. The cathedral built in his memory is considered one of the most beautiful in the East.

Palmyra: The one that the Romans baptized Palmyra (the city of palms), and that the Syrians call Tadmor (miracle in Aramaic), is the most important oasis of the Syrian desert.
Located 240 km from Damascus, Palmyra is the city of all superlatives. It arises in the midst of golden sands that extend to infinity. An oasis of columns, remains and palm trees that testifies to the splendour of this city that made, one day, tremble Rome … 

The temple of Bel: It was for the Palmyrenes what Zeus was for the Greeks. Its temple is the largest and most majestic building in Palmyra, a unique example of fusion between Greco-Roman and oriental-inspired architecture.
The theatre and the big colonnade: It crosses the city on more than one kilometre, by which the caravans arriving from the desert, passed.
Tombs: including tombs towers, tombs dug, tombs temples or individual tombs.                                                                                       

Continue to Damascus.

Day 7 - 19 Apr 2024 - Visit of Damascus

Breakfast at the hotel.
Guided tour of Damascus.

Sites visited:
The National Museum – Worth a visit as it provides an overview of the civilizations that have succeeded on Syrian soil. The museum contains statues, seals, jewelry, masks, mosaics, tablets and weavings from the most important sites in the country                                                                                                    

The Umayyad Mosque: Located in the heart of the Medina, the mosque is distinguished by its prayer room, its courtyard and its walls covered with mosaics.                                                                                         

El-Azem Palace: Not far from the Great Mosque, in the labyrinth of the souk is the palace EI-Azem. lt is considered as the sumptuous model of the Damascene house, whose exterior simplicity and sobriety, do not suggest anything about a beautiful and rich interior, with many varieties of flowers, fruit trees and water jets.                                                                                              

Saint Ananian Church: lt is of particular importance because it is attached to the memory of Saint Paul. Before his conversion to Christianity, he had a vision here that blinded him for several days and gave him an unshakeable faith.                                                                                      

The Souk Al-Hamidiye -The most beautiful souk of Damascus. Its shops display all sorts of goods, especially clothes, fabrics, pastries and handicrafts.                                                                                              

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 8 - 20 Apr 2024 - Damascus – Bosra – Jerash – Ammane

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure towards Bosra.                                                                                           
Bosra – A very ancient city, mentioned in the inscriptions of Akhenaton in the 14th century BC. The most important of its monuments is the famous Roman theater which dates back to the 2nd century AD. With a diameter of 90 meters and a depth of eight meters, it’s stands can accommodate 17000 spectators.                                                                     

Continue to Jerash.                                                                                        
The second largest tourist site in the country after Petra, Jerash became a very important city from the Roman conquests (64-63 BC), becoming one of the largest cities of the Decapolis towards end of the 1st century AD. The city reached a considerable level of wealth, the impressive public works remains and monuments are still visible today and are the most eloquent testimony to their achievements.                                                             

Continue to Amman. 

Day 9 - 21 Apr 2024 - Amman – Madaba – Mount Nebo – Dead Sea

Breakfast at the hotel.
Departure by the “Route des Rois” towards Madaba.
In the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George of Madaba you can admire the mosaic map of Palestine.

You will then join Mount Nebo.                                                             
Mount Nebo is the most revered site in Jordan since Moses was buried there after contemplating the Promised Land. ln the sanctuary of the death of Moses, and in the church of Saint Lot and Saint Procope, are mosaics in perfect state of conservation.                                                                                            

Last step of the day, the Dead Sea                                                                                              
Many times, cited in the Old Testament, it has a deep spiritual and historical heritage
because it is believed that it was on its shores that the important cities of Sodom, Gomorrah and Zebouin were built.    

The Dead Sea is the lowest point on Earth, and its high salt level means that visitors will float effortlessly atop the water. You can lather yourself with the mud, which is said to have healing properties and a high concentration of minerals for a completely free spa treatment.   
The peculiarity that will not fail to surprise you, is that it is almost impossible to sink in its waters, four times as salty as ordinary seawater …                                                                        

Overnight at the Dead Sea.

Day 10 - 22 Apr 2024 - Dead Sea – Kerak – Petra

Breakfast at the hotel.
Departure towards Kerak.                                                                                            
Perched on a hill that dominates the whole area, Kerak has grown inside its walls. lts ramparts allowed it to preserve itself throughout the Ottoman period, protecting itself from the Bedouin raids.                                                                 
Continue to Petra.
Overnight at the hotel.

Day 11 - 23 Apr 2024 - Petra

Breakfast at the hotel. Site visit. Lunch during the visit.                                                                                         Petra: Petra was the capital of the Nabataeans, a Semitic people from Arabia. They settled in this place from the sixth century BC. The site, consisting of about 600 monuments carved in the rock, extends over an area of about 6 km by 3 km. Petra is one of the magical places as there are few in the world. This “chaos of rocks” (meaning of Petra in Greek) shaped by the wind, the sand and the water is at the origin of a mixture of extraordinary colors.

The “Treasure” (Al-Kanaz, in Arabic): This is a gigantic royal tomb that measures 30m wide and 43m high. It is dug out of the rock and has fuelled the imagination of many artists and novelists. It was built by the Nabataeans in the 1st century BC It is inevitably the culmination of a visit to Petra.

Siq: It is a narrow canyon, with a width of 3 to 11 meters, and deep in places up to 100 meters. It was dug by the grains of sand carried by the wind and which eroded the very friable rock.

The Royal Tombs: The Tomb at the Urn, which takes its name from the small urn located at the top of the pediment of the colonnades. The Tomb of the Silk, which owes its name to the veins of the rock and the soft colors of the sandstone. The Tomb of Sextus Florentinus, erected in honor of the Roman governor of the province of Arabia in the year 130.

El Deir: The biggest monument of Petra. It is reached by a staircase of 800 steps carved into the rock. The Lions Tomb, so called because of two lion sculptures that guard the entrance.

The Theatre: It was dug in the time of Christ by the Nabataeans and then enlarged by the Romans.  

Departure towards Wadi Rum

Day 12 - 24 Apr 2024 - Wadi Rum - Amman

Breakfast at the hotel..                                                                                

Wadi Rum is associated with the memory of TE Lawrence, who settled there with the Arab Revolt troops in 1917. Lawrence of Arabia left marvelous descriptions of this “open-air cathedral” in his book The Seven Pillars of Wisdom.                                                                                                     

Back to Amman.

Day 13 - 25 Apr 2024 - Departure

Departure from Amman
Transfer to the airport according to the time of your scheduled flight.

Group minimum 06

Rates:
EUR1985 Per person sharing 
​Accommodation in Double/Twin rooms, increment 1 single room.

Essentials: 

Will be sent with full itinerary when confirmed

Check List: 

Will be sent with full itinerary when confirmed

Passport:

Click here to check the visa requirements for Lebanon
Click here to check the visa requirements for Syria
Click here to check the visa requirements for Jordan


Weather:

LEBANON

While it has four distinct seasons, uniquely for a Middle Eastern country, and so can be visited all year-round, the best time to go to Lebanon is definitely spring. The weather is pleasantly warm and dry, ideal for the coast, the mountains and exploring the country’s many historic sites.

Lebanon is nowhere near as arid as other Middle Eastern countries, with a quite moderate climate and four distinct seasons. Late spring, May and June, as well as the autumn months of October and November, are the best months for trekking in places such as the Kadisha Valley or Horsh Ehden and wine tasting in the Bekaa Valley.

Summer temperatures can be oppressive on the coast where many cities are situated, up to around 25°C to 28°C in Beirut, whereas it’s substantially cooler at higher elevations. The best time to go to Lebanon is the spring and autumn, when it’s far milder, the scenery is at its most beautiful, and the archaeological sites are not at all busy.

SYRIA

Spring and autumn are the best seasons to visit Syria. March to May is the spring while autumn is the time between September to November. The weather during this time is cool, mild and pleasant. Spring witnesses the blooming of beautiful flowers. It is extremely pleasant to travel within Syria in the cooler temperature of autumn.

Average temperatures in Syria vary drastically. Considering humidity, temperatures feel very nice much of the year, but hot in the summer and cold in the winter with a very low chance of rain or snow throughout the year. The area is somewhat temperate — in the 51st percentile for pleasant weather — compared to tourist destinations worldwide. Weeks with ideal weather are listed above.

If you’re looking for the very warmest time to visit Syria, the hottest months are July, August, and then June. See average monthly temperatures below. The warmest time of year is generally early August where highs are regularly around 37.9°C with temperatures rarely dropping below 23.9°C at night.

JORDAN

The best times to visit Jordan are in the spring and autumn, when the days are warm, with temperatures into the high twenties, but the nights are cool. This climate is pleasant and perfect for exploring — it is not too hot for hiking in the nature reserves and both flora and fauna are abundant.

Jordan’s summer months are very hot, with temperatures reaching up into the forties. However, it is still worth considering a trip at this time if you are not adversely affected by heat, as you will have sites like Petra almost to yourself.

Jordan experiences snow in the winter months and the nights get cold, especially in the desert regions. Winter is also when the majority of the rain falls, but showers tend to be short and sharp.

Jordan is a year-round destination – but despite its small size, you’ll find wide variations in climate, often reliant on the topography: Amman, Petra and Wadi Rum all lie well over 800m above sea level, Dana and Ajloun are even higher (up to 1500m), whereas the Dead Sea lies 400m below sea level. This means that deciding on when to go to Jordan depends on where you’re intending to visit.

Assuming that you’re keen to travel around a little, the best month to visit Jordan is either in April or May. Most of the rain has cleared up and temperatures haven’t yet hit the sizzling highs of the summer, which have been known to hit 45°C.

 


Currency:

LEBANON
The official currency is the Lebanese Pound (LBP), which is divided into 100 piastres; the Lebanese Pound is locally known as the Lira. US dollars are accepted throughout the country.

ATM machines are widely available in Lebanon except in isolated towns and cash can be withdrawn from banks during business hours.
Credits cards are widely used.

Tipping is customary in Lebanon and service staff are usually tipped around 10 to 15 percent of the bill. Porters, hotel staff, valets, and doormen usually receive a nominal fee, depending on the area, service, and establishment.

SYRIA
​The official currency is the Syrian pound (SYP), which is divided into 100 piastres. Travellers can change money at official exchange offices, hotels and at different shops; GBPs and USDs are the best foreign currencies to visit with.
International sanctions have blocked ATMs and credit cards, so travellers will have to bring enough cash for the duration of their stay. If necessary, travellers can withdraw USD from most ATMs in Lebanon, as the capital, Beirut, is about a two-hour drive away from Damascus.
Visitors can also exchange Syrian pounds for Lebanese pounds or USD in Beirut. They’re unlikely to get the same opportunity outside of Lebanon

Visitors ordinarily tip waiters, bartenders, hotel staff and taxi drivers in Damascus. Waiters generally receive a tip of between 10 and 20 percent, depending on the quality of the service. Taxi drivers expect a tip of between 10 and 20 percent; hotel staffs usually receive between 2 and 5 USD.

JORDAN
The official currency is the dinar (JOD), which is divided into 10 dirhams, 100 piastres or 1,000 fulus. Foreign currency can be changed at any bank or moneychanger.
Banks are closed on Fridays. Better hotels will also exchange money. American Express, Visa, MasterCard and Diners Club are the most widely accepted credit cards and can be used at major hotels, restaurants and tourist shops; cash can be withdrawn from inside banks.
ATMs are available throughout Amman and in other major cities, but are harder to find in rural areas.

The better hotels and restaurants add a 10 percent service charge to the bill, but smaller establishments usually expect a tip. It is customary to round up the price of a taxi trip instead of tipping.


Vaccination:

Covid Lebanon
Passengers must have:
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 14 days and at most 6 months before departure; or
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated and received a booster dose; or
– a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken at most 48 hours before departure from the first embarkation point; or
– a negative COVID-19 rapid antigen test taken at most 24 hours before departure from the first embarkation point. The test certificate must have a QR code. 

Passengers transiting through Beirut (BEY) to Syria must have:
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 14 days and at most 6 months before departure; or
– a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated and received a booster dose;
– a negative COVID-19 PCR test result issued at most 48 hours before departure and are subject to a COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival, at their own expense; or
– a negative COVID-19 rapid antigen test taken at most 24 hours before departure from the first embarkation point. The test certificate must have a QR code.

Covid Syria
Syria is open for tourism. Passengers must have a negative COVID-19 PCR test result issued at most 96 hours before departure from the first embarkation point.
– This does not apply to:
– passengers younger than 12 years;
– passengers with a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated at least 7 days before departure.

Passengers could be subject to a COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival.
A completed “Passenger Locator Form” (PLF) must be presented upon arrival.

At the end of the tour and departure to Lebanon, or Jordan, you do not need PCR test if you want to stay in Lebanon and if you are leaving Lebanon directly, the matter depends on the destination.

If you want to leave for UAE, from Damascus airport, you don t need PCR test, if you are fully vaccinated.​

Covid Jordan
Passengers must complete a “Declaration Form” before departure at https://www.gateway2jordan.gov.jo.  
This will generate a QR code which must be presented before boarding and upon arrival.
Passengers must have health insurance valid for the period of intended stay.
More COVID-19 related information can be found at
https://www.carc.jo/index.php/en/covid19-related-measures

 



Trip Highlights:

LEBABON
Beirut
Baalbek
Byblos
Jeita

SYRIA
Historically known as the cradle of civilization.
Damascus – old and new
Traditional Souks
Maaloula village
Palmyra
Most famous fortress of the Middle Ages

JORDAN
​​Jerash
Citadel of Amman
Dead Sea
Petra
Wadi Rum

 

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