This is part of a series of blog entries on how to get to countries and places. Here is a link to the index. I plan to eventually cover every country and some other places. If you have a request for a particular country or place please use the contact me link at top right, or leave a comment.
Not the easiest or safest country to visit at the moment. Nonetheless there are ways to go to Iraq that do not involve armed forces, peacekeepers, UN or consultants. Last year there were reports of tours of the northern Kurdistan part of the country (as well as across the border in Turkey), however, I am not sure if these are running yet.
It is possible to fly to Iraq on the following:
- Oneworld - Royal Jordanian Airlines from Amman to Baghdad
- Star Alliance - Turkish Airlines from Istanbul to Baghdad and Austrian Airlines from Vienna to Erbil
- Sky Team - none
- other - MEA from Beirut to Baghdad from June 2009?
I flew to Erbil last year (see a most unusual flight experience), and here is another report of Kurdistan from Chris Guillebeau. For some comments on visas/entry requirements, check out this post.
Obviously the safety, visa requirements and travel options can vary rapidly and so all travellers to Iraq are highly recommended to keep themselves informed. Currently my own view is Erbil is lower risk than Baghdad.
TIP Fares are extremely high and so this is a great route to book on an award, or as part of a round the world ticket. As long as you can book several months in advance there should be availability for both options.