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Published: October 31st 2013
October 6, 2013
So, we booked three weeks off in October way back in the Spring, and as August was closing we realized we hadn't decided on where to go...gah! After tossing around a few ideas we decided on Jordan (coupled with Greece, more on that to come) so it was off to the Middle East! The lovely K has always wanted to see Petra, and I fell in love with deserts while in Morocco so it seemed like a perfect choice...add on the Dead Sea, Jerash and seeing the Red Sea at Aqaba and the trip pretty much took care of itself...
The plan was to start in Amman for a couple of days before heading to Petra, then the desert at Wadi Rum before running out of real estate at the southern port city of Aqaba...we arrived at the unholy hour of 2am, and as the airport is quite a ways out of town it was about 3am before we finally put our heads down on the pillows in Old Amman...followed not long after by yes the call to prayer! Haha...it's a great sound, I really enjoy hearing it...
Didn't quite make it to
breakfast that day, think we crashed until about noon but once we finally got going we headed out to explore the old part of the city...love staying in the older parts, way more character (and characters!) and I think you get a better feel for the pulse of the city...and Amman certainly hums along!
Not a whole lot to see really; we checked out the Roman Amphitheatre which was conveniently located right near our hotel, then grabbed a bite to eat...hopped a cab over to a place called Rainbow Street, heard there were some cool restaurants/cafes and found a place that served pints (an obvious challenge in a Muslim nation, especially the older parts...). We were pretty bagged at this point, although it was tempting to stay at this pub as they would be showing some NFL football games at 8pm but decided to head back to the ranch and get some sleep...
Woke up to a beautiful day and actually made it to breakfast on the rooftop terrace of the hotel...great vantage point to see a good chunk of Amman sprawling out in all directions...absolutely fantastic...we decided to head up to the Citadel after breaky, one of
the other sites to see in the area...more amazing views, it's perched on top of a hill overlooking the old town and contains Roman ruins dating back to the first or second century AD I believe...pretty amazing overlooking the city and then hearing the calls to prayer starting from all the mosques, beautiful just doesn't do it justice..
Next stop was lunch at the now famous Hashem's, reputed to have the best falafel and hummus in town (these are both touchy topics as everyone has there favourite spot for both)...I say "now" as apparently the king and his family paid a visit here a couple of years ago and really boosted the reputation...not that it needed any boosting, the food is absolutely brilliant! You don't really order; they seat you, the waiter kind of waves his hand in a circle indicating "the works?" and you go from there...pretty soon hummus, falafels, another sauce I can't recall and a hot sauce are delivered to your table, followed by an arm-load of fresh pita and away you go...and away we went, the word "gorge" does not even seem to convey the amount of food we ate here (on two separate occasions
as well!)...wasn't much of a falafel guy before, but this sold me on it...plus I think I ate hummus every day I was in Jordan, couldn't get enough of it!
Aside from a quick rip to the new part of town to hit the Rovers Return for a couple of pints (the lovely K is a big Coronation Street fan, had to do it...haha...) that was about it for Amman. We returned for a couple of days at the end of the trip and used it as a launch point for both Jerash and the Dead Sea but aside from that there isn't much to do here...cool nonetheless but two days is really all you need...
(Some photos copyright of Karen C., denoted by (KC)...used with kind permission)
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