The Middle East is not a continent, but it is an area that is important enough to warrant its own section. Especially in modern times, it has become and still is an area which is very important in the world, for many reasons. It is an area well known for its oil production, and it is also an area well known for its religious importance and history. It has been an area of special interest over the past ten years or some with the first Gulf War of the Early 90s, and now the war being waged in Iraq. The Middle East is an area that is predominently Muslim, with the exception of Israel.
Geographically it includes countries mostly which are considered to be in North Africa, including Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, and Palenstinian territories the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Due to their location, most of these countries are considered part of Africa, although in some cases they may identify with even Europe or Asia. There are also other border countries which aren't listed which sometimes are included when the Middle East is spoken of.
If you do your homework and go well prepared, travel in the Middle East can be very rewarding. Each country has its own standards and cultures which should be appreciated, and you should become familiar with them while travelling. The restrictions and expectations vary greatly from country to country. Do some good planning and respect the local laws and customs, and your trip should go smoothly.