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Middle East Topics specific to the Middle East countries, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Yemen, Oman and the Emirates
Photo by Michael Jordan, enjoying a meal at sunset, Zangskar Valley, India

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Michael Jordan
enjoying a meal at sunset,
Zangskar Valley, India



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  #1  
Old 30 Jun 2023
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Ride Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt

I am researching my next trip. Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt aren't countries I am familiar with yet. I've ridden Prudhoe, Ushuaia, RTW on a KLR and many other countries on rental bikes. I started a file from HU about different members experiences in this region. There aren't as many as I would like that are current.

1. Are there any additional problems for an American? I ride solo, but ride with locals for a short time if we cross paths.
2. Is it possible to rent a bike rather than bringing a bike? I have no set amount of time, but guess 4-6 weeks.
3. Destinations to visit is an individual preference of course. I make a Google map that I mark with possible POI's and daily decided where I ride next. I've missed some great places I was unaware of. (Cappadoci my first time through Turkey) So suggestions that I may not have on my map would be welcome.
4. I travel light but always take a tent and sleeping bag. I prefer comfortable lodging but it's not always possible. Is there a good link to lodging in these countries?
5. Would there be any unusual shots I might need traveling here?



I rode in Japan for 3 weeks this spring. Friends ask me where am I going next. So I will research for a while and see if this is a worthwhile adventure. I may mention it to my wife in a couple weeks if it looks doable.
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  #2  
Old 30 Jun 2023
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The Lebanon-Israel border is very closed.

The Israel-Jordan border is open, so is Jordan-KSA, there is some talk that a Jordan land entry stamp from an Israel-adjacent border might make KSA border guards deny you entry, but there have also been reports of them not caring. (Israel will not stamp your passport, only give you a paper insert with the visa stamp.)

KSA to Egypt is possible with a ferry. Egypt overland into Israel is possible, but whether a motorcycle will be allowed into the Sinai region of Egypt is kind of a coin toss - definitely a non-zero chance that the answer will be "no". (Authorities are concerned about moto-riding rebels, so all two-wheeled traffic is banned and presumed hostile.)

Renting a motorcycle in Israel should be possible, but expensive, and obviously riding into KSA on an Israeli plate is a very bad idea.

Wild camping in the Middle East is, er, not for the faint of heart at the best of times.

Finally, what exactly do you want to experience on this ride? These places are pretty much all flat desert. It's one thing to transit through them on a RTW trip, but to spend a lot of money and your vacation time on what's going to be very hot days of riding along long straight tarmac sections sounds like a frankly terrible plan.

If this type of experience appeals to you, go to Morocco, and if you want it to be actual proper Middle East, I am sure you can rent a dirtbike and have a wonderful dune experience in UAE.
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Old 1 Jul 2023
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My travels are to see historic sites and natural formations. I know I may need to leave Israel as my last destination. I've experienced other countries where you can't come here from there. Serbia, Armenia.



Rent or ship a bike? I haven't looked at the regulations yet. I rented in south east Asia until I got to China. I had to buy a bike there and sell when leaving. Still better and cheaper than fly, rent, ride, return, fly repeat..... I'll do what I need to do. And if I'm not allowed to ride in Egypt, I'll be a normal tourist for a while.
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Old 1 Jul 2023
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Originally Posted by AnTyx View Post
The Lebanon-Israel border is very closed.

Finally, what exactly do you want to experience on this ride? These places are pretty much all flat desert. It's one thing to transit through them on a RTW trip, but to spend a lot of money and your vacation time on what's going to be very hot days of riding along long straight tarmac sections sounds like a frankly terrible plan.
While there are parts of these countries that are flat, they are absolutely not "all flat desert". Lots of mountains (and other significant rock formations) in all of these countries, with some fantastic scenery, not to mention historical sites.

I get that the desert isn't for everyone, but why post misinformation?
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Old 1 Jul 2023
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Originally Posted by netllama View Post
While there are parts of these countries that are flat, they are absolutely not "all flat desert". Lots of mountains (and other significant rock formations) in all of these countries, with some fantastic scenery, not to mention historical sites.
I get that the desert isn't for everyone, but why post misinformation?

I wintered in southern California for 17 years and rode the deserts there. I've ridden across the Mongolian Gobi Desert and 6000 miles of Russia's Siberia. That isn't a turn off to me. If I can work out logistics for most of Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt, I'll do it. A quick view of a map looks like Lebanon to Egypt is much less than 1000 miles (minus side trips). I could do that on a bicycle-Well, before I started having breathing issues.


I have a DRZ-400 that I'm trying to sell because I don't ride it anymore. Years ago I rode it from Ohio to Prudhoe Bay to Key West. If renting doesn't look feasible, maybe shipping it to ride and leaving or selling it somewhere might work. I'm retired so time isn't an issue.
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  #6  
Old 16 Jul 2023
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Don't forget to share pictures

Thanks Joshua. Still haven't found enough answers nor researched enough. But I'm feeling like it may only be a 30% chance of happening. But I always post pictures and dialogue while I'm on the road.
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Old 10 Aug 2023
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I've not looked at this trip for several weeks. But yesterday I started research again. I'll be in Europe (rental car) for several weeks till October 11. I've been busy planning that trip assuming middle east was probably not going to be fruitful. I decided to narrow down to Egypt and Israel. They have the most places I'd like to visit. If I go I will not ship my own bike-too difficult and expensive for a several weeks trip. I'd read that renting in Egypt wasn't possible. I couldn't find any rental companys. I found places that do tour rides. I always said I'd never do a motorcycle tour. But since I'm going to be nearby and it may be the only way I can ride and see, I'm looking at a 10 tour. Next I would go to Israel. Not sure if they have direct flights there. But rentals are available. I doubt I could take that rental into Jordan. So that would probably be the end of my trip.


I just received notice that the 10 day tour is only once a year. And it leaves a week before I could be there. So I guess Egypt is probably out.

Last edited by doogle; 11 Aug 2023 at 21:06. Reason: update
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Old 1 Dec 2023
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enter/riding jordan to saudi arabia

hi
someone have same fresh news about shipping bike to Aqaba from Europe, permit to riding for a solo bike in Jordan and enter in Saudi arabia, for finally shipping bike to Iran?
thanks
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  #9  
Old 4 Dec 2023
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Originally Posted by safadeza View Post
hi
someone have same fresh news about shipping bike to Aqaba from Europe, permit to riding for a solo bike in Jordan and enter in Saudi arabia, for finally shipping bike to Iran?
thanks
Europe to Jordan, I dont know of any vessels other then regular cargo container ship it. I checked 2 months ago with the Turkey-Saudi Arabia vessel and the broker said that route has been cancelled.
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