Getting from Egypt to Jordan without going through Israel means getting a ferry across the Gulf of Aqaba. Unfortunately I can’t go into Israel because if I do I won’t be allowed into Syria. Whoever operates the ferry has made the most of the fact that’s for most people it’s the only option. The 1 hour crossing costs $80!
The first thing you notice about Jordan is how much more expensive it is than Egypt. So on this trip I’ll be spending the minimum amount of time here. There’s not much public transport either so I had to take a taxi from the ferry port to Petra. Luckily there were several other people in the same boat (so the speak) so I split the fare with 2 others.
It’s all totally worth it to get to Petra. The entrance-way, called the Siq, is a 2 km walk through a natural canyon in the famous rose red rock. At the end of the Siq, you’re immediately hit by a view of the Treasury, the site’s most impressive building. You can’t take your eyes off it, in my case literally. I very nearly fell into some kind of tomb.
the Treasury there are a serious of tombs, temples, an amphitheatre,a monastery and even a Roman colonnade . The whole place is massive and deserves at least a full day.
When I first arrived there was a large Brazilian tour group loudly clapping and singing happy birthday. I was worried the place would be jammed but beyond the major sites you can go 20 minutes without seeing anyone else. You even get the feeling you’re the first person to discover the place.
Around 5pm the place totally clears out but it stays open until sunset. This is by far the best time. You have the whole place more or less to yourself and the changing light brings out a whole range of colours in the rock.
It’s early days, but I’m not sure what can top this on the rest of the trip!
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