Israel, One of Most Popular Travel Destinations in Middle East

Dubai tops the list for European travelers, says Travelzoo; Middle East is a region people 'fall in love with.'

Children playing on the beach in Dubai on April 19, 2014
Children playing on the beach in Dubai in April. AP

Dubai, Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Abu Dhabi are the most popular destinations in the Middle East for many European travelers, according to a survey by U.K. travel deal provider Travelzoo.

The pattern held for Britain, Germany, France and Spain, according to the survey of the company's 6.9 million subscribers in Europe. Among residents of these countries, Germans made up the largest number of visitors to the Middle East, with 45 percent of respondents having made the trip.

“The Middle East offers the European visitor a fantastic range of holiday experiences and guaranteed sunshine when much of Europe is still struggling to reach temperatures in double-digits," said Richard Singer, Travelzoo's European managing director. "Once visited, the Middle East is a region people clearly fall in love with."

 For those yet to visit the Middle East, Dubai tops the wish list, with 43 percent of European respondents saying it is the destination in the region they would be most interested in visiting. In Britain the figure is even higher, with more than 60 percent of respondents saying they would like to take a vacation in Dubai.

The survey found that concerns about safety, political unrest and cultural differences mar the image of countries in the Middle East, but that those who have visited have had an overwhelmingly positive experience.

More than 70 percent of U.K. respondents said they would like to return to the region for another holiday in the next 12-18 months, although European travel agencies often fail to suggest the Middle East as a vacation destination, the survey found.