Iraq

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  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 9781841624884
  • Size: 135mm x 216mm
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  • ISBN: 9781841629773
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About this book

This brand new edition of Bradt's unique guide to Iraq gives up-to-date travel information and also informs the armchair traveller about the history and exciting archaeological prospects of this ancient land with a rich culture. Ancient sites such as Babylon and Ur, the stunning architecture of the country's mosques, the natural beauty and wildlife of the Marshes and beautiful Iraqi handicrafts create a myriad of attractions to inspire even the most seasoned traveller. The authors, Geoff Hann, Karen Dabrowska and Tina Townsend-Greaves, bring their considerable knowledge and understanding of Iraq to provide all the practical and background information needed to explore this country and to get the most out of your trip. Advice on cultural awareness and religious sensitivity in the context of Iraqi history, along with where to get the latest information on which parts of the country you can still visit, make this an invaluable guide.

About the author

New Zealander Karen Dabrowska migrated to the UK in 1985 where she graduated with an MA in international journalism. She was editor of New Horizon, a publication focussing on the Islamic world, and helped set up publications for the Iraqi opposition to Saddam Hussein. Later she worked for JANA News Agency and contributed articles to The Middle East, The Guardian and Islamic Tourism. She joined the Sudanese National Council, a medical charity, and is a board member of the Kurdish Aid Foundation.

Geoff Hann is the owner and managing director of Hinterland Travel, the only UK-based travel company currently taking tourists to cover Iraq completely (not including the travel companies specialising in pilgrim traffic) . He has been taking tourists to Iraq since 1970, and ran the famous post-war tour, following the toppling of Saddam Hussain in October 2003.

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Contents

Introduction x
PART ONE GENERAL INFORMATION 1
Chapter 1 Background Information 3
Geography and climate 3, Natural history and
conservation 5, Government and politics 8, Economy
11, People 14, Language 17, Religion 18, Education 26,
Culture 27

Chapter 2 History 37
Early Mesopotamia 37, Before Sumer 38, The Sumerians
39, Babylon and Hammurabi 40, The Assyrians 41,
Babylon revisited 41, Persian conquest 43, Alexander
the Great 43, The Umayyads 43, The Abbasids 46,
The Mongols 49, The Ottomans 50, Modern times 52,
Occupation and first experiments with democracy 64,
Iraq under Maliki 66

Chapter 3 Archaeology 69
Introduction 69, The history of archaeology in Iraq 71,
Archaeology in Iraq today 76, The future 79

Chapter 4 Practical Information 83
When to visit 83, Highlights 83, Suggested itineraries 84,
Tour operators 87, Red tape 89, Police and military 90,
Embassies 90, Getting there and away 92, Health 94, Safety
98, Women travellers 100, Travellers with disabilities 100,
Gay and lesbian travellers 101, Travelling with kids 101,
What to take 101, Money 102, Budgeting 102, Getting
around 103, Accommodation 104, Eating and drinking
105, Public holidays and festivals 107, Shopping 108,
Media and communications 110, Business 111, Buying a
property 112, Cultural etiquette 112, Travelling positively
114

PART TWO BETWEEN THE TWO RIVERS 117
Chapter 5 Baghdad and Environs 119
History 119, Getting there and away 129, Getting around
133, Tourist information 134, Tour operators 134, Where
to stay 134, Where to eat and drink 137, Entertainment
137, Culture 139, Shopping 140, Sports/fitness 141,
Other practicalities 141, What to see and do 142, Around
Baghdad 156

Chapter 6 East and West of Baghdad 169
Baquba 169, Around Baquba 172, The international
border crossing in Diyala Province to Iran 173 Fallujah
173, Around Fallujah 175, Ramadi 177, Around Ramadi
179, The international border crossings in Anbar Province
to Syria and Jordan 179, Rutba 181, Balad 184, Samarra
185, Tikrit (Salah ad Din) 194, Around Tikrit 196, Barji
(Bayji) 196

Chapter 7 Kirkuk and Mosul 199
Kirkuk 199, Around Kirkuk 204, Mosul 208, Around
Mosul 217, To the north of Mosul 227, To the east of
Mosul 235, To the west of Mosul 235, To the south of
Mosul 239

Chapter 8 The Road South 248
History 248, Kerbala (Shrine City) 253, Around Kerbala
260, Ukhaider 262, Around Ukhaider 265, Al-Hilla 265,
Babylon 266, Around Babylon 272, Ancient Borsippa
(Birs Nimrud) 276, Al-Kifl or Chifal 277, Kufa 280, Najaf
283, Around Najaf 293, Al-Hira 294, Heading further
south 294, Diwaniyah 296, Nippur (Naifar) 296, Isin 298,
Samawah 300, Around Samawah 301, Uruk 302, Larsa
(modern Tell Senkereh) 304, Tell Ubaid 306, Eridu (Tell
Abu Sharein) 308, Ur (Tell Muqeihar) 309, Nasiriyah 314

Chapter 9 Return from Basra 317
Basra 317, Around Basra 327, Querna 328, The Marshes
329, Al-Uzair (continuing on the road north) 340, Al-
Amarah 341, Al-Kut 342, Al-Hiba (Lagash) 344, Wasit 346

PART THREE IRAQI KURDISTAN 349
Chapter 10 Practicalities in Kurdistan 351
General information 351, Practical information 363,
Highlights 364, Suggested itineraries 364, Tour operators
366, Red tape 366, Embassies and other representation
367, Getting there and away 367, Health 368, Safety 368,
Women travellers 369, Gay travellers 369, Travellers with
disabilities 370, Travelling with kids 370, What to take
370, Money 370, Getting around 370, Accommodation
371, Eating and drinking 371, Public holidays 373,
Shopping 374, Arts and entertainment 374, Media and
communications 375, Business 376, Buying a property
376, Cultural etiquette 376, Travelling positively 378

Chapter 11 Erbil and Environs 379
History 379, Getting there and away 380, Getting around
382, Tourist information 382, Where to stay 382, Where
to eat and drink 385, Entertainment 386, Shopping 387,
Sports/fi tness 387, Other practicalities 388, What to see
and do 388, Around Erbil 390

Chapter 12 Dohuk and Environs 393
History 393, Getting there and away 394, Getting around
394, Tourist information 395, Where to stay 395, Where
to eat and drink 396, Entertainment 397, Shopping 397,
Sports/fi tness 398, Other practicalities 398, What to see
and do 398, Around Dohuk 399

Chapter 13 Suleimaniyah and Environs 403
History 403, Getting there and away 404, Getting around
404, Where to stay 404, Where to eat and drink 406,
Entertainment 406, Shopping 407, Sports/fi tness 407,
Other practicalities 407, What to see and do 407, Around
Suleimaniyah 408

Appendix 1 Language 411
Appendix 2 Further Information 415
Appendix 3 Bibliography 421
Index 423