Cradle of civilisation

When Tony Wheeler first visited Iran the Shah was still in power. Since then much has changed, but the welcome remains the same

The best of Dubai

48 hours in Dubai

This tiny emirate combines Arabic tradition with stunning modernity - and offers five-star luxury at affordable prices

The Complete Guide to Lawrence's Arabia

Winston Churchill described T E Lawrence as 'one of the great beings of our time'. David Orkin retraces his steps through Arabia

Dambulla, we have lift off

With the sci-fi writer Arthur C Clarke as a passenger, Allan Calder wanted to ensure a smooth take-off and landing for Sri Lanka's first balloon ride operation

48 hours in Bahrain

It may be the first Arab state to stage an F1 grand prix, but, it is not just race fans who will find plenty to do in this little kingdom, says Lucy Gillmore

So bad it's good

A seven-star hotel, chic stores, an artificial archipelago that creates a world map in the sea, the tallest building ever, the first underwater hotel: there are no heights - or depths - to which Dubai won't go in its bid to become a tourist mecca. Andrew Tuck visits a tiny country building a big future

Grand tours: A landscape left over from the days of fear

Writers' adventures in literature: Defying convention, Freya Stark seeks to explore Yemen alone. She is given an armed escort

Fancy a trip to downtown Baghdad?

Jeremy Hillman meets the first tourist into the Iraqi capital since the war

A Space Odyssey

Outer Mongolia has almost a million miles of open prairie where nomads on horseback slowly roam, seeking ever greener pastures. But when he leaves the tranquil steppes, Mark Stratton discovers the nation's fighting spirit

48 hours in Dubai

The Gulf's favourite destination is chaotic, cosmopolitan and cheap - ideal for finding shopping bargains on a stopover on your way East, or as a short break in its own right.

In North Korea, the game goes on

There's more to the little-visited Democratic People's Republic of Korea than the West suspects, says Tony Wheeler. You'll even find avid football fans

A renewal of faith in Petra

Jordan's geographical proximity to Israel and Palestine has caused many to question its safety as a holiday destination.

Dubai at dawn

Shopping, sure, but culture? Can this Gulf state offer anything other than golf courses and gold souks? Wake up to a different view
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