2017 is upon us and that means two things: New Year's Resolutions and Bucket Lists.

Instead of traveling miles away, maybe this year you can explore a side of the Middle East you've never seen before. 

These 7 gorgeous spots are waiting close by! Bookmark them. 

1. Chefchaouen, Morocco

Located in the northwest of the North African country, Chefchaouen's white-washed blue homes stand against the backdrop of the Rif Mountains. 

The city is the definition of a picturesque destination. Founded in 1471 as a small fortress, the city's name is derived from the Berber word for horns, lchawen.

There are frequent buses into the city from Fez, Tetouan, Casablanca, Rabat, Meknes, Tangier and Ceuta.

2. Pamukkale, Turkey

Source: Travel Digg

Pamukkale is a spot in Turkey that literally translates to "Cotton Castle." 

The unique site is the definition of a geological phenomenon. It was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

It's also the site of the Greek-Roman city, Hierapolis. Located in western Turkey, Pamukkale receives more than two million visitors annually. You should be among those millions in 2017. 

3. Shiraz, Iran

Shiraz is home to amazing open market places (Vakil Bazaar) and beautiful greenery (Eram Garden). It's also the hometown of one of the most loved and respected poets in Persian literature, Hafiz.

You should definitely go out and explore this city in 2017. You can get to know its poetry and literature while reconnecting with nature.

P.S. Don't forget to visit the gorgeous Nasir ol Molk Mosque!

4. Anfeh, Lebanon

Located approximately 65 kilometers north of Beirut, Anfeh has traditionally been largely overlooked by tourists. 

That changed when some beach-goers snapped photos of this epic village, attracting even more photo-snapping and Instagram-uploading beachgoers ... and so on and so forth. 

Now, the coastal town is so busy with tourists you can barely find a place to sit. It's known mostly for its uncanny resemblance to the Cycladic Greek islands, thanks to its whitewashed houses that teeter off the edge of deep blue seas. 

But there is so much more to this charming little village than that. 

5. Dahab, Egypt

Step into Dahab and you will fall in love within the first few minutes. The city went from being a Bedouin fishing village to one of Sinai's most treasured diving destinations. 

So pack your diving/swimming gear, and plan a trip to one of the most beautiful beaches in the region. 

6. Musandam, Oman

Everybody talks about Muscat ... but this hidden gem is where you should be heading in 2017.

You shouldn't travel to Musandam without a proper to-do list. Some places that can't be missed when you go include the Bimmah Sinkhole, Khasab Castle and Khawr Najd. 

7. Khor Al Adaid, Qatar

Source: Youtube

Qatar's inland sea, Khor Al Adaid, is one of the few places in the world where the sea encroaches deep into the desert. 

The place is recognized as a natural reserve by UNESCO and has its own ecosystem. Inaccessible by road, Khor Al Adaid can only be reached by crossing the rolling dunes.