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Berber lady, John TurnerAfrica & the Middle East Africa contains as broad a spectrum of landscapes, cultures and wildlife as it is possible to imagine, from the souks and kasbahs of the northern coast to the snows of Kilimanjaro. Travelling via Egypt in the far northeast, as nomads and traders have done for thousands of years, one crosses into the Middle East, a region of mystery and magic. Staff from Mountain Kingdoms have been exploring these parts of the world for many years, and we've chosen our favourite destinations, using our experience and knowledge, to create this special selection of trips. 63telephone: 0845 330 8579 (local call rate, UK only)international telephone: +44 1453 844 400www.mountainkingdoms.com

64Download holiday itineraries fromwww.mountainkingdoms.come: info@mountainkingdoms.comU nlike glitzy Dubai and austere Saudi Arabia, Oman is an altogether more laid back and hospitable place with wonderful opportunities for trekking. For millennia Oman has been at the crossroads of the Gulf region - everywhere you see the remnants of the country's hectic and warlike past, hilltops are crowned by dramatic forts and watchtowers, while in the towns lively souks still trade in goods from across the region. There are also some surprisingly impressive mountains, rising in places to over 3,000m, great sand deserts and gorges which cut spectacular slashes across the countryside. Ancient villages cling to cliff sides or nestle at the bottom of remote wadis, often kept unexpectedly lush by ancient irrigation systems. There is lots of variety in this stunning trip.F rom the capital city of Amman we head south to one of Jordan's best kept secrets, the beautiful Dana Nature Reserve. As we trek to the desert sands of Wadi Araba, we'll see evidence of past Nabatean settlements as well the tented homes still favoured by many Bedouin. We leave the desert to climb through rugged mountains to reach the ancient city of Petra. Here we'll explore the many rock hewn temples and dwellings, see famous monuments such as 'The Monastery' and walk along the twisting narrow siq (gorge) that finally reveals the stunning façade of 'The Treasury'. Continuing southwards we spend our penultimate night in our own tented Bedouin camp, in the moonlike landscape of Wadi Rum.Extend your holiday for a few days diving on the Red Sea Coast. Contact us on 0845 330 8579 to find out more.I n Cairo we'll explore the Pyramids of Giza and see Tutankhamun's golden funerary mask, in the labyrinthine Egyptian Museum. Crossing the Suez Canal we drive deep into the mountains, to the home of the Jabaliyya Bedouin tribe. Here, with our Bedouin guide, we begin a six-day mountain trek via rocky paths, hidden pools and deep-cut canyons, camping each night in a Bedouin 'garden'. We'll climb Egypt's highest peak, Jebel Katerine 2,642m/8,807ft, and enjoy an atmospheric sunrise from the summit of nearby Mount Sinai 2,285m/7,616ft. We visit historic St Katherine's Monastery, to see the 'burning bush', before concluding our adventure on the Red Sea coast; a fantastic spot for snorkelling, diving or just lying back and savouring a memorable trip. Extend your holiday with a visit to the Valley of the Kings. Call 0845 330 8579 for details.Mountains & Deserts of Arabia - Trekking in Oman One of the jewels of Arabia with exotic bazaars, spectacular mountain treks and ancient villages. Bedouin Paths to Petra & Wadi Rum, Jordan An unforgettable desert and mountain trek to the 'rose red' city of Petra.Egypt & the Summits of Sinai A taste of Ancient Egypt combined with a great mountain trek to Mount Sinai.£1,855£1,895£1,595£1,675£975£995£2,395£2,455£2,265£2,375£1,475£1,495Land OnlyLand OnlyLand OnlyLand OnlyLand OnlyLand OnlyFlight IncludedFlight IncludedFlight IncludedFlight IncludedFlight IncludedSun 13 Mar - Thu 24 Mar 11Sun 13 Nov - Thu 24 Nov 11Sun 11 Mar - Thu 22 Mar 12Thu 14 Apr - Sun 24 Apr 11Thu 13 Oct - Sun 23 Oct 11Thu 13 Apr - Sun 23 Apr 12Thu 10 Mar - Sun 20 Mar 11Thu 06 Oct - Sun 16 Oct 11Thu 08 Mar - Sun 18 Mar 12On Trek: 5 days Local LeaderAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 3 Camping: 6Optional: Single Room £110Insurance: £95On Trek: 7 days Local LeaderAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 3 Camping: 6 Lodge: 1Optional: Single Room £155Insurance: £48On Trek: 6 days Local LeaderAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 5 Eco Lodge: 1 Camping: 4Optional: Single Room £70Single Tent £25Insurance: £48Trek Trek | Duration: 11 DaysTrek | Duration: 11 Days| Duration: 12 DaysGuaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clientsGuaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clientsGuaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clientsGrade: Moderate Grade: Moderate Grade: Moderate For detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comThe Middle East Egypt, Oman and Jordan are all full of ancient wonders and dramatic mountain and desert landscapes that provide sweeping vistas by day and starlit skies by night. See page 63 for a map. St Katherine's Monastery, Sinai, Steve HarbertFlight Included