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Published: February 11th 2014
Feb – got to the airport from Dubai very swiftly as well as through check in and security, the man behind the desk assumed I was going back to London and looked very shocked when I said I was going on to Amman. All very smooth, got to the gate and met a Canadian couple going on a G Adventures tour too. They happened to be sitting in front of me on the plane. The view was great from start to finish. Saw Dubai from the air, including the Burj Khalifa, Burj al arab and the Palm. Was beautiful. Then as we got closer to Amman we flew over a desert, looked so so vast.
Got to the Liwan Hotel, which is lovely so far , shared a taxi with the Canadians then checked in, sharing a room with another lady, not met her yet. Might head out for some lunch.
Ok so as I head out I meet my roommate, Sophie from Australia who’s mum has arrived to see her for a while, I head out for lunch and she goes to meet her mum, she seems very nice. There is only one key for the room,
which could be problematic.
Find a lovely coffee shop in a local mall and then realise everyone is on laptops etc, yes free wifi! Skype people and update my phone etc. After that just chilled out before our G Adventures meeting. Where we met our CEO, Ayman and discussed the week. The camp out in the desert sounds extremely exciting! http://www.gadventures.com/trips/highlights-of-jordan/DWHJ/2014/itinerary/
We all then went out for dinner in a local simple restaurant outdoors, ate pitta bread, hummus, falafel and drank mint tea. As you do. All of it was only £2.00 each! We then headed for drinks in a bar above a book shop. Drinks appear to be a lot more expensive than food, for example 2 small mojitos (one of the cheapest things on the menu) was £14 (I am using £’s as its 97p to a Jordanian Dinnar). Got to know a few of the group, some work for G Adventures and most are very well travelled, I may learn a lot from them actually. Good for me! Some stayed out for a few more drinks but most went back to the hotel.
Up and ready to go for 8am.
Headed straight out to Jerash, largest Roman city site that is preserved in the world, learnt a lot along the way about the Greeks, romans, bezytine and Islamic culture in Jordan. Jerash is an amazing place! There’s two auditoriums in the city and both have a central spot where if you stand there you can here your voice echo around your head and ears and this means that people in the highest seat will be able to hear you from that point due to the acoustics of the building. Amazing stuff. They even came out and played music for us while we were sitting in the seats, they played the bagpipes. Talk about a contrast of cultures! We entered an oval market place surrounded by columns and lead to the main road which goes north to south. Theres so much to see, and yet there is only 25% of the city site has been excavated as the modern day city has been build on it. Also there have been 3 major earthquakes which will have effected it.
We then set off for the Dead Sea. WAHOO! Had lunch there and got changed. Walking into the sea hurts at first
as you are walking on solid waves of salt! It turns into sand eventually and then as you get deeper it starts to feel like you are standing on an inflatable ball. When you eventually lie down in the water it’s amazing, such a great feeling, like really easy swimming! Your skin feels really soft when you are in it. When you come out of the sea your skin feels almost sticky, but dry at the same time. And you have white bits from where the salt has dried on your skin, best to rinse yourself off straight away, and see if you can take a hotel towel as my towel was all salty until I washed it. Out to a restaurant for dinner with some of the group, to a place in downtown Amman called Jafra, beautiful cheap food again. Great day.
up and out for 8am, checked out of the hotel, quick stop at Safeway to get food supplies for the next day or so. Then headed to Mount Nebo, where the memorial sight is for Moses, as well as a church (that was closed as having a new roof) the main thing about this
was the mosaic floor that was found, but also the view! I initiated the first group photo.
We then headed to Madaba and Karak Castle. In Madaba we had lunch and I bought a bracelet. Collection is coming along nicely, I am trying to collect on in country I visit. I really like this one – it’s the black one with loads of beads on. Karak Castle is huge and even Richard III fought there. Back on the road and headed to our hotel next to the entrance to Petra.
Did a night candlelit tour to Petra. Absolutely stunning. The moon light lighting the place and the candles lighting the way, there were two guys playing instruments. When we got to Petra, after a 1.2km walk through the canyon, I sat down and nearly actually cried with happiness. Sometimes you just have to stand back and appreciate moments in life.
– Petra day
Up at 5am for leaving at 6am. Walked in Petra and we were the only people there for a lot of the time. Walked through the same canyon and it was just as beautiful this time round too. We
learned that it was used as a welcome to people, inspired by romans, natives and Egyptians, to welcome all. We carried on walking and came across tombs where the whole family used to live, including with their dead. Some tombs were decorated and others were just a hole in the mountain as it depended how rich you were. We trekked to a royal palace and then had a drink, was still early at this time.
After we went to the monastery in Petra, after visiting a roman church with a mosaic floor. The monastery is massive! There were then two viewpoints to go to to see the desert and other views of the monastery. After this we went back down and started the main trek. This trek is not on the map and it heads to see the ‘treasury’ (what the main building Petra is called locally, as the whole city is called Petra not just one monument.) we see the treasury from the top of this 100 metre plus high cliff. Absolutely amazing! I sat right near the edge and got some great pictures, some of us didn’t dare.
We then had mansaf for dinner – the
traditional Jordanian dish. And a couple of us headed out for a drink or three to a local hotel.
More to come later. (this is actually up to date)
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