Published: March 2nd 2013March 2nd 2013
A long day today, but saw some incredible sights.
It started with an amazing breakfast in the hostel. Out came olives, hummus, jam, bread, orange cake and tea, followed by 'real' breakfast which this morning was an omelette. I had to leave half of it on the plates I was so full!
At 8am I joined some other travellers from the hostel and headed out in a minivan towards Jerash. Basically, it is a town with the centrepiece being a ruined ancient city (Roman style). One of the guys in the group and I hired an English-speaking guide there, Samir, and took almost two hours to get around the whole site. Really, we could have done with longer!
What amazed me was how green the place was. I knew I was visiting at the end of the Jordan winter, but it didn't occur that I would see so much greenery here.
A lot of the ruins are still underground. Samir told us every now and then they do more work on it, and you can tell where more sites are hidden because you can see the tops of columns sticking up above ground. He said they still need to find the 'main' building or town hall of the city. An archaeologist's dream...
After that we went to Aljoun castle, built by the son of Saladin (not sure how to spell his name right!) in the 12th century. From the ruins, there were amazing views of the valley around.
We stopped for schwarma on the way to Umm Qais which really surprised me. I signed up for this day trip to see Jerash, but I could have spent most of the day at Umm Qais - so many nooks and crannies to explore, and you could see the Sea of Galilee in the distance (Israel on one side, Syria further to the right).
So now starting to think about where to head next, keeping in mind I need to get to Egypt at some point in the next couple of weeks. Still have no idea of how I'm going to get there!