Wander Across Iraq (April 2024)

Sold Out!
Apr 14 — Apr 26, 2024
13 days
8/8 spots booked
BOOK WITH CONFIDENCE: To reserve your spot on a tour, a $500 deposit will be required. However, you can book with complete peace of mind as this deposit will be refundable - minus a 3% transaction fee - for 30 days. [Deposits are non-refundable within 90 days of the tour start date, even if 30 days have not yet passed since the payment date.]
Forgotten as a travel destination, the situation has now changed...and for those who prefer the road less taken, it's time to visit Iraq!
Get to know the wonderfully welcoming Iraqi people through endless local interactions
Fully experience Baghdad - old city, markets, museums, cultural hangouts, excellent food, nightlife and more!
Spend time learning about local life from the families who live in the unique Iraqi Marshes
Petra
Walk through ancient Babylon and explore one of Saddam Hussein's abandoned palaces
Visit the incredible Imam Ali Shrine in Najaf, with all of its domes, gold, mosaics and colors
Spend time at the medieval Islamic capital of Samarra with its spectacular architectural design
Take a complete and powerful tour of the city of Mosul to learn about its difficul past and its inspiring hopes for the future
Finish the trip in vibrant Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq

This trip will provide you with a deep dive straight into the culture, people, food and history of this absolutely intriguing and complex country. You’ll spend time in vibrant Baghdad, travel south to the gorgeous holy Imam Ali shrine in Najaf and connect with the 5000 year old civilization of the Marsh Arabs, living secluded among the Mesopotamia Marshes. You’ll visit Iraq’s most eye-opening historical sites – from Samarra to Hatra to Babylon and more – while also touring the culturally-proud cities of Mosul and Erbil.

You’ll also spend significant time meeting such kind Iraqi people, learning directly from those we come into contact with. You’ll interact with new people every single day, including our own personal local friends, and you will be treated to a genuine warmth and kindness all over the country. Meeting the people of Iraq will surely be the major highlight of this trip, and something you will never forget.

Of course, we will make sure you try excellent local food in all destinations, explore local markets, experience Baghdad’s nightlife, wander through massive palaces, get out into beautiful nature and SO MUCH MORE. And you’ll do it all with a group of fellow travelers who are beyond excited to participate in such a unique trip!

While many of us think that Iraq could not possibly be a travel destination, this is no longer the case. With our local team, excellent guides and an experienced tour leader, this trip will undoubtedly become one of the most memorable and life-changing trips you will ever take!

*Our Wandering Earl Tour to Iraq is genuinely one-of-a-kind. Our itinerary is full of activities, destinations and local interactions that are only possible due to our local contacts. These contacts are able to gain special access for our groups to a wide variety of sites and people and this is what helps make our tour unlike any other!

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Pay a deposit of $500 per person
  • 1
    Apr 14Baghdad (arrival day)
    Baghdad (arrival day)
    Arrival day
    Included: Dinner
    - You'll be met at the airport by a representative who will take you through the visa on arrival process - Transfer to our hotel in the city center - Group orientation - Welcome dinner at a rooftop restaurant overlooking Baghdad
  • 2
    Apr 15Baghdad
    Baghdad
    Highlights: Full Baghdad city tour, Old Baghdad, Tigris River, Green Zone
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Full walking tour of Old Baghdad - Wander through the local markets - Boat trip on the Tigris River - Baghdad cultural center - Tour to other neighborhoods and monuments - Drive through the Green Zone - Group dinner
  • 3
    Apr 16Baghdad
    Baghdad
    Highlights: Local breakfast, Modern Baghdad, evening out with friends
    Included: Breakfast, Dinner
    - Traditional Iraqi breakfast - Guided visit to the wonderful Iraqi Museum - Modern Baghdad tour - Evening out with local friends (dinner and local shisha cafe)
  • 4
    Apr 17Baghdad » Babylon » Najaf
    Baghdad » Babylon » Najaf
    Highlights: Ancient Babylon, abandoned Saddam Hussein palace, Imam Ali Shrine, Najaf
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Morning departure from Baghdad - Full walking tour of the ancient city of Babylon - Special access to one of Saddam Hussein's abandoned palaces - Drive to Najaf - Visit to the world's largest cemetery (Valley of Peace) - Surreal Imam Ali Shrine experience in the evening - Group dinner
  • 5
    Apr 18Najaf » Nasiriyah and the Ancient City of Ur
    Najaf » Nasiriyah and the Ancient City of Ur
    Highlights: Nasiriyah, Sumerian City of Ur, Abraham's house
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Morning drive to Nasiriyah - Afternoon visit to the ancient Sumerian City of Ur, including the house where Abraham possibly lived - Evening free time in Nasiriyah - Group dinner
  • 6
    Apr 19Mesopotamia Marshes » Baghdad
    Mesopotamia Marshes » Baghdad
    Highlights: Al Hammar and Central Marshes by boat, local breakfast and lunch, local activities
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch
    - Sunrise over the marshes - Visit to Al Hammar West and the Central Marshes via boat - Meet our local friends in their reed home for a traditional regional breakfast - Boat tour through the marshes - Locally prepared fish lunch - Afternoon drive to Baghdad
  • 7
    Apr 20Baghdad » Fallujah » Dur Kurigalzu » Baghdad
    Baghdad » Fallujah » Dur Kurigalzu » Baghdad
    Highlights: Fallujah, abandoned city of Dur Kurigalzu, 3400 year old temple tower
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Morning trip to Fallujah - Traditional Fallujah lunch - Walking tour along the corniche - Visit to the abandoned city of Dur Kurigalzu and the 3400 year old temple tower - Free evening - Group dinner - Overnight in Baghdad
  • 8
    Apr 21Baghdad » Samarra » Hatra » Mosul
    Baghdad » Samarra » Hatra » Mosul
    Highlights: Spiral minaret of Samarra, fortified city of Hatra, arrival in Mosul
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Morning departure from Baghdad - Visit to Samarra and its ancient spiral minaret - Visit to the magnificent fortified caravan city of Hatra - Arrival in Mosul - Group dinner
  • 9
    Apr 22Mosul
    Mosul
    Highlights: Full walking tour of Old Mosul, meeting local residents
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Full walking tour of Old Mosul - Visits to Al-Nouri Mosque and Al Tahira Church (UNESCO sites) - Old Bazaar and spice market - Interaction with locals to hear their stories from ISIS times - Evening out at a wonderfully inspiring cultural cafe
  • 10
    Apr 23Mosul » Nineveh Plains » Mosul
    Mosul » Nineveh Plains » Mosul
    Highlights: Nineveh Plains, local village with unique local activities!
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch
    - Day trip to a Christian/Yazidi village in the Nineveh Plains region - Local breakfast with a family - Tour of the village, including stops at several interesting locations - Return to Mosul in the afternoon - Free evening
  • 11
    Apr 24Mosul » Erbil
    Mosul » Erbil
    Highlights: Christian town of Qaraqosh, arrival in Erbil
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Morning departure from Mosul - Walking tour and lunch in the town of Qaraqosh - Arrival in Erbil - Group dinner
  • 12
    Apr 25Erbil
    Erbil
    Highlights: Morning walking tour of Erbil, ancient citadel, Grand Mosque, farewell dinner
    Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    - Morning city tour of Erbil - Visit the impressive ancient citadel (one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world) - Old Erbil markets - Grand Mosque - Shar Park - Local lunch - Free afternoon - Farewell group dinner
  • 13
    Apr 26Erbil (departure day)
    Erbil (departure day)
    Departure day
    Included: Breakfast
    - Transfer to the airport depending on your flight time

Tour Essentials

Medium Physical Level
While the tour itself is not very strenuous, please note that it can involve the following: long days, a good amount of walking, being in the sun in potentially hot temperatures, long bus rides, early morning wake-ups and other similar scenarios.
Accommodation
We’ll stay in a combination of 3/4* hotels on this trip. Accommodation is mid-range, with good, comfortable rooms. Please keep in mind that given the lack of tourism infrastructure, rooms might have some quirks or may be more basic than you are used to. All rooms have a private bathroom with hot water. There are 8 single rooms available. Other rooms will be shared. Solo travelers will be paired together, two travelers per room in two single beds. (*Please note: If you book a shared room and we cannot find another traveler to share that room, there will be an extra surcharge for having a single room.)
Transport
Ride in comfort in our 20 seat minibuses while in the cities and in our deluxe 35 passenger bus while we drive between destinations. The use of such a bus ensures a comfortable ride as there is plenty of space for each guest, a bathroom on board, charging outlets and a refrigerator.
Meals
Breakfast every day, 10 lunches and 10 dinners are included. With included meals, some will be served family style and other times you will be able to order anything you wish from the menu. All dietary restrictions can be accommodated although it might result in a limited menu.
Sustainability
As with all of our trips, we aim to offer as sustainable an experience as we can. Trash is recycled where possible and we avoid mass tourism activities that cause harm to the environment and/or do not benefit local communities.
Small Groups
This tour requires a minimum of 8 participants and has a maximum of 12 participants in order to ensure the best small group tour experience. With such a small group, you'll be able to enjoy unique, rewarding activities that would not be accessible with more people. That's the kind of trip we love to offer!
Safety
While many governments have travel warnings in place for Iraq, the reality is quite different. There is certainly always a risk when embarking on travel to certain destinations, but travelers are now visiting Iraq in increasing numbers. This is due to the improved stability and safety situation. We take safety extremely seriously and do not operate trips if there is any reason to believe our guests could be in danger.

What's included

Included
  • Wandering Earl Tours Expert Tour Leader
  • Small group (maximum 12 participants)
  • Accommodation (12 nights – 3/4* hotels)
  • Transportation within Iraq (private minibus)
  • Local English-speaking guides in each destination
  • All included activities and entrance fees
  • Breakfast every day, 10 lunches and 10 dinners
  • Bottled water throughout the trip
  • Gratuities at hotels/included meals
  • All airport transfers
  • Visa assistance at the airport
Not Included
  • Flights to/from Iraq (Baghdad/Erbil)
  • Passport/visa fees (visa on arrival for most nationalities is $77 USD)
  • Meals and activities not mentioned
  • Travel insurance (mandatory)
  • Other gratuities