Following the fall of ISIS in 2017, YPT conducted our first research trip to Baghdad in April of 2018. The trip proved to be not only safe but incredibly informative and fascinating. This particular region has an abundance of ancient and modern historical sites completely unspoilt by tourism and ready for you to explore it with us.
The whole Iraq ultimate tour starts in Baghdad – the capital city of Iraq, where you’ll visit some of the world’s most unique monuments including Firdos Square – the very square where the Coalition forces toppled Saddam’s statue in 2003, and visit the former Camp Al-Adala – where the execution of Saddam Hussein took place in 2006, now known as Camp Justice.
You’ll visit the ancient site of Babylon, the Mesopotamian marshes, see the holy city of Karbala and the southern city of Basra. We cover a huge amount of ground with our expert local guide explaining all as we go and taking us on the safest route. You’ll be walking on the street and meeting people who are extremely eager to meet foreigners after their country was off limit for years! Prepare for all your preconceived ideas to be challenged but also to have a lot of fun.
After our time in Baghdad comes to close we will board a Iraqi Airways domestic flight and head to Iraqi Kurdistan a prospective new nation protected by the Peshmerga which were at the forefront of the fight with ISIS. Despite its significance and proximity to probably the most tense area in the world, Kurdistan offers not only safety, but beautiful scenery, famed in Middle Eastern literature as a paradise on earth, with more than 3500 archaeological sites, and some of the most friendly and welcoming people on earth.
We will also be lucky enough to be in the country to take in all the festivities surrounding the Newroz holiday, which celebrates the beginning of spring, represents new beginnings and is considered the most important Kurdish Festival on the calendar every year. The atmosphere in Iraqi Kurdistan during this holiday is fantastic with special local delicacies on sample, fireworks performances, live music, dance, and for good luck, the locals smash pottery
The trip takes you to the second major city of Sulamaniyah, onwards to the beautiful gorge of Rawanduz, and then heading north to Duhok, Saddam’s Palace, Amadiya and the world’s only Yazidi shrine at Lalish before heading back to UNESCO World Heritage Site, Erbil, checking out lots of cool sights in between.
This tour can also be combined with our earlier Spring Iran Revolutionary tour.
Please note: For a tour of this nature, security is the most important factor and the itinerary is subject to change depending on the situation on the ground and the information we receive from our local partners. The local guide and YPT guide’s decision on eventual itinerary changes is final and taken with your safety in mind.
Friday 10th March – Baghdad Arrival Morning
Saturday 11th March – Baghdad – Ctesiphon – Baghdad Morning
Sunday 12th March – Samarra – Agargouf Ziggurat – Karbala Morning
Monday 13th March – Karbala – Babylon – Najaf Morning
Tuesday 14th March – Najaf – Ur – Marshes – Basra Morning
Wednesday 15th March – Basra – Baghdad Morning
Thursday 16th March – Baghdad – Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan
Friday 17th March – Erbil – Sulaymaniyah Morning
Saturday 18th March – Rawanduz Morning
Sunday 19th March – Amadiya – Dohuk Morning
Monday 20th March – Lalish – Akre: Newroz Festival – Erbil Morning
Tuesday 21st March – Erbil Morning
Wednesday 22nd March – Erbil
Want to extend your YPT adventure? Join one of our great tour extensions
• Visa support
• Accommodation on twin share basis
• Domestic flight on Iraqi Airways from Baghdad to Erbil
• Transport to complete the itinerary
• English speaking local guide and YPT guide at all times
• Entrance fees unless otherwise specified
• Iraqi visa on arrival $75 – covers both regions of Iraq
• Single Supplement ($600)
• International flights arriving in Baghdad and departing Erbil
• Lunches, dinners and personal spending
• Tips for the local guide and drivers
We have expert guides ready to help answer any questions you may have.