Gary is currently in Grand Chute, WI (May 22nd, 2015)

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Free Stuff Saturday: Win a Free Arab Keffiyeh

The last contest had a pretty good response considering it was just a cheap necklace. I put it through and the winner was Sherry from Malaysia, who ironically enough runs the website I’ll be sending it out in about a week, Sherry.

This week’s contest is something I picked up in Jordan. All over the Arab world you’ll see men wearing the traditional headdress: the keffiyeh. I’ve seen many different styles and methods of wearing it. The most formal seems to be with the black wool band, called an agal, holding it in place. Some Bedouin just wrapped it on their head without the benefit of the agal. In addition to use by Arabs, it was adopted by the British military because of its very practical use as a scarf. Something similar looking to this is also what got Rachel Ray into a big controversy with her Dunkin Donuts commercial.

The particular one I’m offering is Jordanian with a wool agal.

All you have to do to win is to leave a comment saying which Arab country you would like to visit if you won an all expense paid trip. For the purposes of the contest, we’ll use the list of countries from the Arab League: Algeria, Bahrain, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen. Please note that “none” is not an acceptable answer if you want to play along.

I’ll close comments in about 5 days and pick a winner.

  • 165 Comments... What's your take?

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  1. Andria says:

    I would love to go to Morocco.

  2. M says:

    Definitely Morocco which always makes me think of the movie Casablanca. I love these headdresses and never dreamt I’d be even this close to owning one. me me me pick me

  3. I’ve been to Morocco and it was great. I’d really like to go to Libya (though I probably can’t right snow since I’m an American and visas are iffy). A co-worker went last year and had a wonderful time. She brought my back a sheet of postage stamps commemorating the American invastion…and a Kadaffi keychain!

  4. Gaolga says:

    I want to visit Iran !… I have read a lot about it and I have seen many pictures…. I want to see with my eyes the cultural differences and visit Persepolis also and see the famous painting of the skeleton liberty statue. I was scared by this country before but not anymore as many visitors have say is very safe to visit and people is friendly.

    (I don’t know why Iran is not listed, if it doesn’t count what a pity :( )

  5. Yael says:

    Morocco seems the least scary.

  6. Rob says:

    I’ve had an inappropriate fascination with Fez, Casablanca and Marrakesh, Morocco since I was a kid. It’s on my Top 7 destinations while traveling the world.

  7. Tom says:

    Egypt. My 9 year old son and I are fascinated with ancient Egypt and the Pyramids. A dream trip would include touring the Pyramids, visiting the Great Sphynx, and the various temples. As avid hikers, we are enthralled with the idea of walking through the Valley of the Kings. Ending with a float and soak in the Dead Sea would complete this dream trip.

  8. MousE says:

    Egypt. I would love to see Egypt.

    Thank you for this post, Gary!

  9. Definitely Egypt. I want to see the pyramids once in my life, but I also want to go to the markets and stuff. Also, I would loooove to do a desert camping trip on a camel. (I rode camels in the Gobi and loved it!)

  10. Shannon says:

    Morocco. Saudi Arabia would be interesting, but don’t think they would like the fact that I wouldn’t wear the women’s outfit.

  11. Jenifer says:

    I would choose Morocco, though Saudi Arabia is a close second.

  12. Scott says:

    I would love to visit all of the smaller countries that are bunched together such as Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, etc.

  13. Leonardo says:

    I would go to Lebanon, delicious food, great people. My neighbor was born there.

  14. Scott says:

    I would love to do a whirlwind trip of all of those smaller countries such as Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, United Arab Emirates, etc.

  15. Brian Humek says:

    Definitely Sudan. One day I just want to go to Darfur and help in any way I can. So much suffering. Just want to show my love in some tangible way. I had some friends go last year .

  16. Sherry says:

    thanks I will be waiting :) hope will love me more :)

  17. Josh says:

    I’d have to say Palestine. I’m working on a PhD in Criminal Justice, and one of my main interests is how policing works in society that are just post-conflict (or arguably still in conflict).

  18. Tanis says:

    I do have to say. I would love to go to Egypt. It’s always been a dream of mine to photograph Egypt. It’s funny, but ever since Raiders of the Lost Ark I guess. Egypt just holds a certain fascination for me.

  19. Roland Smith says:

    My first stop would be Morocco. I would go by way of Spain and across the strait, then Tanger, Rabat, and Marrakech. The music and the markets resonate with me.

  20. Joanna says:

    Morocco, hands down, Morocco.

  21. Oman. I’ve met some of the nicest people from Oman. Then Dubai. Now they have some really unique Palms. I saw a documentary on their construction, along with the World. Spent some time viewing them from satelite photos. Amazing.

  22. Lisa Mann says:

    Jordan! I’m dying to see Petra.

  23. I would love to see Palestine, assuming it continues to exist independently. I don’t know that I will ever get that opportunity, but reading alot of ur travels at least makes me less beholden to the fear that it would be unsafe.

  24. Egypt! The last time I was in Israel, I was held up at the Sinai border, but I do want to visit the oldest wonders of the earth, and this time I will apply for visa in advance. :)

  25. Renee says:

    Egypt first, then Jordan to see Petra.

  26. Christina says:

    Morocco :-) I keep hearing about Nathan’s trip when he was a kid and now I want to see.

  27. Roxana says:

    1. Egypt
    2. UAE
    3. Qatar

  28. Thanks for the contest Gary. Love your updates on Twitter!

    If I were to win a trip, I would most like to visit Egypt.


  29. Ada Kerman says:

    Lebanon, which is where my grandparents picked up the kaffiyeh I have now. But it’s 50 years old and fragile, so I could use a new one.

    Hope you keep one to cover your bald spot! ;)

    • Gary says:


      I have a rather disgusting ball cap I got in Australia. I’m on my 4th hat on my trip now. I’ve lost the previous 3.

  30. Peter Gokey says:

    I think I would like to see Egypt the most. Pyramids. Cliche, I know. I would also like to see Marrakesh one day, so I might pick Morocco.

  31. I’ve been to Morocco, very cool. The people were super nice. I’d love to visit the UAE, specifically Dubai. All that crazy architecture, manmade islands — so innovative!

  32. Don says:

    Lebanon. Beirut rocks!

  33. Comoros – it’s the only one I’ve never heard of and I’ve no idea where it is – show me!

  34. JudiStull says:

    Free Stuff Saturday? I think that could catch on! :) What a fun idea. I’ll have to think of some Maryland stuff to pass along.

  35. Tanis says:

    I would like to see a photo of it on you!!!

  36. Turphile says:

    Comoros. Because I like to say it. Mauritania would be second.

  37. Amy B. says:

    It would have to be Morocco. Sensory overload, in a good way.

  38. sandy says:

    my husband has served overseas and he says morocco is hte best too with alot of culture.

  39. Ben says:

    I’d also love to visit Morocco. It seems such a wonderfully vibrant place, and it is has easy access to South-Western Europe.

  40. I would love to visit Morocco to learn more about the culture, history and incredible cuisine of this country. I want to attend cooking classes, ride a camel (to and from the classes) visit the markets, check out the architecture, and the artisans.

  41. Lucile says:

    I would love to go to Egypt, see the pyramids and how brilliant this people was :)

  42. Karen P says:

    I would love to visit Egypt and see the pyramids (and everything else)

  43. Debra B says:

    I would LOVE to go to Jordan, it has so much history and interesting places to visit, and I love, love the phone and people

    thanks for hosting this great giveaway

  44. Debbi says:

    Pick me!!!! I chose Egypt-that would be some history trip!! I have never been there and would love to go. Also living in the south it would give my neighbors a glimps of other cultures. Life is good!

  45. Twelper says:

    I;d like to say Palestine, where I would do volunteer work to help rebuild some of the devastated homes, but I’d probably really be wishing I was in Dubai.

  46. I’d like to visit Egypt and see the pyramids and the Valley of the Kings. Also Abu Simbal (sp?).

    I just visited Dubai (UAE) on business in January and found it very interesting, though I was suprised how much like the US it was in standard of living, though different culturally. Biggest surprise: there was a Krispy Kreme doughnut shop in the mall across from my hotel!

  47. Kis Csüny says:

    I’d like to visit Jordan!

  48. Toni Brender says:

    I would love to go back to Israel and Egypt both… but, I want to go to Jordan, new adventure :)

About Gary Arndt

My name is Gary Arndt. In March 2007 I set out to travel around the world...
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