The Middle East

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The Middle East is a region, not a continent, not a subcontinent, and not a country. The region is located at the junction of Africa, Asia, and Europe and parts of the Middle East are in all three continents. Find out more about the Middle East, the countries that make up the Middle East and the amazing travel destinations and places to visit in The Middle East in our post.

We also include a map of the Middle East to help you better.

The Middle East

The Middle East

What Continent is the Middle East?

The Middle East is a region that lies on the borders of the continents of Europe, Asia, and Africa with most of the region being in the continent of Asia.

The Middle East is a transcontinental region, in that certain countries that are part of the Middle East, such as Egypt, are in two continents at once.

The Middle East is in Asia, but also Africa in this instance.

Turkey is also a transcontinental country, so here, the Middle East stretches from Asia to Europe.

Is The Middle East a Subcontinent?

No, the Middle East is not a subcontinent, it is a region extending into Asia, Africa and Europe, but part of The Middle East, The Arabian Peninsula, is a recognised subcontinent of Asia.

Travel in The Middle East

Travel in the Middle East is immensely rewarding. Highlights of the Middle East include Jordan, Egypt, Dubai (UAE), Istanbul, and Abu Dhabi. Many wonders of the world, old and new, are to be found in the Middle East.

There are vacation locations in abundance in the Middle East, if you travel for beaches and relaxation, there are such attractions along the Mediterranean, Persian Gulf, and Red Sea coasts of The Middle East.

The Black Sea is to the north of Turkiye, and this sea also has coastal attractions. Iran even borders the Caspian Sea.

All of the countries in The Middle East can be visited by tourists, tours do exist, but for some Middle Eastern countries you need to be a determined tourist.

Other countries in the region are popular tourist destinations and international flight hubs, such as Istanbul and Dubai.

The Pyramids at Giza are widely considered to be the only remaining wonder of the original 7 wonders of the world. An interesting fact about Egypt is that you can still today go inside this original Wonder of the World and visit Alexandria, formerly home to a second Wonder, the lighthouse at Alexandria.

In fact, fragments of several of the wonders still exist today.

The Dead Sea, the lowest point on Earth is in The Middle East, as is the UNESCO listed ancient city of Petra in Jordan. Ephesus and its temple of Artemis, one of the original Ancient Wonders, is in Turkey.

Roman ruins and cities are scattered throughout the Middle East, for instance the many Roman amphitheatres in Jordan and the city of Jerash.

The Hanging Gardens of Babylon were never located, but they would have been in The Middle East.

Most of the locations mentioned in the Bible are in the Middle East, including Jesus’s baptism site and Mt Nebo, where Moses was shown The Promised Land. Jerusalem is a very popular destination with travellers and tourists.

You will find some of the seven wonders of the modern and natural worlds in the Middle east today.

Which countries are in the Middle East?

The definition of the Middle East has shifted over time, but the following 18 countries are generally considered to be part of the Middle East today. The countries that make up the Middle east are:

  • Bahrain
  • Cyprus
  • Egypt
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Israel
  • Jordan
  • Kuwait
  • Lebanon
  • Oman
  • Palestine
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Syria
  • Turkey
  • UAE (United Arab Emirates)
  • Yemen

All of these Middle Eastern countries are in Asia, 1 of them, Egypt, is partly in Africa, Turkey is partly in Europe.

Where is the Middle East on the Map?

The Middle East is in the center of a map of Europe, Asia, and Africa. You can see The Middle East on the map below.

What Languages are Spoken in The Middle East?

The majority of countries in the Middle East are Arabic speaking, but other languages such as Egyptian, Turkish and Hebrew are also found. English is also widely spoken in many Middle Eastern countries.

Of course, many countries in the Middle East have immigrant or expat communities, every language in the world can likely be found in the Middle Eastern region.

When we read this list of countries that make up the Middle East, we realise how much more of the world we still have to see!

Of the Middle Eastern countries above, we only cover UAE, Turkey, Jordan and Egypt so far! Our Middle East travel blog is sadly lacking in destinations.

Browse our collection of posts relating to travel in the Middle East, by heading to these destination links, Dubai, Jordan, Egypt.

If you'd like to hire a car during your stay, use this car rental comparison tool to find the best deal!

We also suggest you take a look at this company to get a quote for all kinds of the more tricky adventure or extended travel insurance.

Try Stayz / VRBO for an alternative way to find rentals on homes/apartments/condos in any country!

About the author
Alyson Long
Alyson Long is a British medical scientist who jumped ship to chase dreams. A former Chief Biomedical Scientist at London's West Middlesex Hospital she started in website creation and travel writing in 2011. Alyson is a full-time blogger and travel writer, a published author, and owns several websites. World Travel Family is the biggest. A lifetime of wanderlust and over 6 years of full-time travel, plus a separate 12 month gap year, has given Alyson and the family some travel expert smarts to share with you on this world travel site. Today Alyson still travels extensively to update this site and continue her mission to visit every country, but she's often at home on her farm in Australia.

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