Day 6: Petra & Turkish Hammam

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Middle East » Jordan » South » Petra
October 17th 2013
Published: March 30th 2014
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Horse and carriageHorse and carriageHorse and carriage

They bring you to the entrance to the Siq.
Yesterday, I finally saw Al-Khazneh (The Treasury) with my own eyes. Today, I shall see the Treasury again, in the glory of the sunlight. But other tombs and places should be explored as well. It would be a hard day with much walking and climbing, and nothing is better to end such day with a good Turkish Hammam and massage!

The day started early. Our tour leader wanted to leave early at 7 am, so we would be at the visit centre some 10 minutes later. If you arrive later, it will be busier. Around 9 or 10, busses from Aqaba or Amman with tourist are coming, so around that time it would be way crowded by the Treasury and the Siq. Around 7.30 you have a bigger change to be alone with the Treasury yourself. At 6.30 am the breakfast was open. I took an extensive breakfast; today it would be a long day. In our hotel (Al Anbat Hotel) there was much choice in breakfast. The buss could leave even before 7 am, so finally we go to Petra! For one of the group members there was a special day: it was her birthday! It's very special to
The Obelisk TombThe Obelisk TombThe Obelisk Tomb

Just before the Siq.
visit one of the Seven Wonders of the World at your birthday! Petra here we come! Our travelling guide Omar joined at this tour. He knew a lot of Jordan and Petra, so it was fine to have him around.

Petra, in the Wadi Arabia, is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, together with The Coliseum in Rome, Chichén Itzá (Maya temple) in Yucatán (Mexico), Cristo Redentor (The statue of Christ the Redeemer) in Rio de Janeiro, Machu Pinchu in the Cuzco region in Peru, Taj Mahal in Agra (India), The Great Wall in China and the honorary title goes to the Giza Necropolis (one of the Great Pyramids) close by Cairo. Much people do know Petra of the Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade movie. Petra is more than only the Treasury, it's a whole city mostly carved out of rocks. The Treasury is kept preserved during time, and the most beautiful reunion in the city of Petra (in my eyes). It's impossible to visit and discover all of Petra's secrets in one day, but you can do it in two days. We shall visit the city one day, but it's possible to book an
Bab-as-Siq TricliniumBab-as-Siq TricliniumBab-as-Siq Triclinium

Just before the Siq
optional excursion for the next day to visit the High Places of Sacrifice. I've already booked a horse riding trip for the next day, so I only shall visit Petra only one day.

In Petra, you see of course the Nabatean art, but you also can see influences of the Greeks, The Romans and even Christianity. The history of Petra started 9000 years ago and Petra is even mentioned in the Old Testament. Petra means "Rock" in Greek. In the Palaeolithic Age (over 9000 years ago), humans started to live in villages, for example Beidha, close to Petra. In the millennia following, many Nomadic tribes passed through the villages, to trade between the powerful civilizations of The Old Egypt and the Mesopotamia. The reason why they choice to pass via the mountains of Wadi Arabia, because it's was the best passage where they could connect to the two powerful civilizations. Petra was mentioned in the Old Testament, as the Israelites approached from Edom after spending forty year in the desert. In Petra, God ordered Moses to produce water for his followers, where Moses struck the rock where water started to flow. Nowadays, the spring still exist and is called
The WaterdamThe WaterdamThe Waterdam

This Waterdam is laying just in front of the Siq, and it's build to prevent waterfloads in the Siq.
"Ain Musa" (Spring of Moses), which you can visit with a guide. However, Petra is build by the Nabateans. The first time the Nabateans were mentioned was in 647 BC, as enemies of Ashurbanipal, the last king of Assyria. The Nabateans were at that time a tribe of Bedouin nomads. When the Babylonians claimed the land, the Nabateans migrated around Edom. In that time, the Nabateans raided many caravans that passed through the canyon. After time, they started to do business with the many caravans and guaranteed a safe passage. During this time Edom became known as Arabia Petrea and became a famous place for trading. The Roman author Diodorus Siculus reports that the Greek ruler of Syria, Antigonus attacked the Nabateans in 312 BC. Their troops couldn't find any man, and slaughtered some woman and children, and tried to raid all they could carry. However, the Nabateans were alarmed and within an hour they were in pursuit and won this battle. However, they decide to buy peace from the Greeks, in order to save the wealthy of the city. In the following two centuries the power of the Nabateans growth and it became limitless. They extend their kingdom far
The SiqThe SiqThe Siq

As you can see: at the left hand the Nabateans build a rock-cut water channel, which carried the water supply to the city.
beyond Petra. In 80 BC they controlled Damascus, and they spread over current Saudi Arabia. Petra grew more in its size and it was the place for business, such as iron, gold, silver, glass, copper and silk. And of course spices, even spices of the Far East like China and India, for example sugar, ginger, henna and pepper. Almost all trade routes came via Petra. The Romans started to send troops from Pompey to Petra, but the Nabatean could buy peace from the Roman Empire. The Roman author Strabo described Petra "The Nabateans are so acquisitive that they give honours to those who increase their possessions, and publicly fine those who lose them". Petra was known as a wealthy, cosmopolitan city and was full of villas, buildings and gardens. The pressure of the Romans started to become too big, and the last Nabatean King Rabbel II tried to move this capital of Petra to Borsa, but the only option he has was to strike a deal with Rome. When he died at 106 AD the entire Nabatean kingdom felt peaceful in the hands of the Romans. Even in the hands of the Romans, the city of Petra was important for the Romans and was visited by Emperor Hadrian in 130 AD and even possible by Emperor Severus in 199 AD. Sadly the time was turning and by 300 AD Petra was serious decline and became derelict through lack of maintenance. In 324 Christianity was adopted as the official religion of the empire. However, an earthquake in 363 levelled half of Petra. Petra was rediscovered by the Swiss explorer Jean Louis Burckhardt. He was offered him a mission of the location of the source of the Nile River. In Egypt, he started to familiarize himself with the Islam and Arabic culture in preparation of his expedition. When he arrived in Aleppo in 1809 he started to tell his undercover story: he was a Muslim trader from India and his mother tongue was Hindustani. He took over the name of Sheikh Ibrahim Ibn Abdallah. He heard in Kerak about the ancient city of Petra. With a local guide, he rediscovered the Treasury. He managed to make detailed notes and sketches. He died before his expedition to the source of the Nile started. His journals were published after his death and overshadowed by the rediscovery of Petra. His grave is visit able in a Muslim cemetery in Cairo under the name Sheikh Ibrahim.

After entering the Visit Centre, it was time to walk to the Siq. However, for the Siq there are some monuments to mention. You can see the Obelisk Tomb and the Bab-as-Siq Triclinium. Before the Siq, you can see the Dam and the tunnel. The dam is a modern dam; however, it's almost exactly the same as built by the Nabateans around 50 AD. The Modern and the old damn had the same function: prevent floodwaters in the Siq. The Siq is 1,2 km long with high cliffs. Some cliffs are 150 meter high. At some points, it's some meters broad. At the left hand the Nabateans build a rock-cut water channel, which carried the water supply to the city. The Siq has many curves. The walk though the Siq is an experience in itself. The cliffs are high and the curves are beautiful. It's hard to make pictures in the Siq. There are many curves in the Siq, and behind one curve the precious building on earth is hidden: the Treasury. I knew it’s there, but it was still very exciting. I really wanted to see the Treasury again, but this time in daylight. And there, the last curve. We could see the Treasury. Yeah, I really could see him again and say hello again.

We got some free time by the Treasury. But we weren’t alone, it was crowded with tourist. Camels were laying in front and sometimes they had to stand up for a ride. It’s a short ride, some circles in front of the Treasury, less than 5 minutes and you have to pay 10 JD. It’s very expensive, for example I booked a camel trip in Wadi Rum for 90 minutes for 25 JD. If you want to do a camel riding trip, I recommend to do it in Wadi Rum. At the place in front of the Treasury there were many souvenir stores and get something to drink. A Bedouin man was playing a traditional Bedouin instrument in one corner of the Treasury. The Treasury is well kept and is 40 meters high. It was possibly build at 100 BC under the reign of King Aretas III. The carvings on its facade are damaged, but still shown that the Nabatean culture was inspired by the Hellenistic and Middle Eastern civilizations. You can
The TreasuryThe TreasuryThe Treasury

Entering of the Siq.
see two large eagles. You also can see the Nabatean Goddess Al-Uzza, equated as the representation of Isis (Egyptian Goddess). Behind Al-Uzza you can see two figures, Winged Victories. Al-Uzza is also symbolised as two lions. At ground level you can see Castor and Pollux, sons of Zeus. Sadly, you cannot enter the Treasury anymore. But it's not like the Indiana Jones movie! It's seems like it's only a square chamber. The function of the Treasury is still not known, but a recessed basin gives a clue: probably the treasury was used for ritual washing.

Time to leave the Treasury; we walked to the Outer Siq. You pass by the Tomb of 17 Graves and the Tomb of Unasyhu. From here, you can spot the Eastern Cliff. The Tomb of 17 Graves is also restored. The path curves left where you can see the Street of Facades. Dozens of facades are carved out of the rocks. They are quite simple, four levels high, and probably the oldest carvings of Petra. When you walk further, you pass here the massive Roman Theatre. It's probably build in 100 AD, before the Romans took over Petra, but probably there were links between
The Treasury...The Treasury...The Treasury...

... and me, a camel and much tourists.
the Roman Empire and the Nabatean were strong enough to build a Roman Theatre. The design is Hellestic, seats coming right down to the orchestra's floor level. It gave place to 8500 people and it's more than the Theatre in Amman. Probably, the whole theatre is curved out of rocks, too. The Theatre was tumbled by the earthquake in 363, but it's renovated. Behind the Theatre, you find many cafes. We took a stop for a drink. From here you can walk the trail for the High Places of Sacrifice. From here, one member stayed to sit down at the cafe. He wasn’t fit enough for the many climbs and the distance we should walk from now one. The first climb was not heavy to do, but he decides to take rest and enjoy the East Cliff from the cafe with a good drink. The rest of us went to explore the Royal Tombs, but known in Arabic as Jabal al-Khubtha. It's at the East side, so it's also known as the East Cliff. Modern stairs lead to Royal Tombs. It's known as the most impressive facade of Petra. The climb is easy. From here, you first visit the urn
The Treasury close-upThe Treasury close-upThe Treasury close-up

Just look at the art.
Tomb. The Tomb is also known as Al-Mahkamah, or "The Court" or "The Jail". Despite of, it probably wasn't used as jail or court, but it seems like it's a grave tomb of a very important person, probably a Nabatean King, that's why they also call the Eastern Cliff the Royal Tombs. Due later conditions the Urn Tomb was later converted in a major church. A Greek inscription in red paint recording the dedication of the Bishop Jason in 447 AD. From the Urn Tomb, you can visit the Silk Tomb. It was known about its streaks of vibrant colours, like blue, pink and yellow. It's also possible to visit the Caramine Tomb. From here, you can visit another tomb, which is named after a visitor. This is the Corinthan Tomb it's also quite famous, because it has the same building style as the Treasury. Sadly, it's contrary with the Treasury; it is not well kept and suffered from the wind. From here, you can visit the Palace Tomb and one of Petra's large facades. It has five different storeys. The top of the highest storey is boiled with masonry, because the cliff wasn't high enough because it collapsed. Then, the tracks lead west, and from here you can visit the Sexitus Florentinus Tomb. This tomb is named after the Roman Governor of the Province of Arabia, Sexitus Florentinus. He died 130 AD, and he was buried in Petra instead of the provincial capital of Borsa. A few meters north you can find the Carmine Tomb, and it's hidden behind a tree. The tomb was in the past known as breathtaking due his bands of colour, but nowadays it's lost. From here, you can take a trail to a plateau where you can visit the Treasury from above. This trail is called Danqur al-Khazneh, and gives you view over the Wadi al-Jarra. This I will discuss later, because it was time to visit the Petra City Centre. You cannot miss the Petra City Centre if you want to visit the Monastery.

The best route you can take here is simply to walk the Colonnaded Street, also known in Roman as Cardo Maximus. Back in time at Petra's culmination, the street leaded to an area covered with buildings and tombs. Sadly, all of them are collapsed. Almost all archaeologists think that a lot of these buildings are still covered far beneath the dusty soil, and those that are exposed are just "the top of the iceberg". At this street, you have to watch out. You can do here a camel trip from the Treasury to the beginning of the stairs of the Monastery. But if you wish, you also can take a horse or a donkey. Because, I walked this street twice (to the Monastery and back to the Royal tombs to start the Danqur al-Khazneh trail), I shall discus first the north side, (Yes this site points North), but I think it’s easier if I call it the side of the Byzantine Churches. I shall discus the other site (south: the side of the Roman gardens and temples) at my way back. First, you start at the ruined Nymphaeum, which was originally a Roman public fountain. But nowadays it's more popular as a hangout place for the Bedouin police. But however, this point was very important, and the Wadi Musa water system was flowing from east to west, bringing the water by the dam at the Siq entrance into the city from the northeast. Above and behind the Nympaheum, you can find a Byzantine Petra Church, build in the 5th century, but remodelled some 50 years later. It didn’t stand long, and it was burned around the year of 600, and remained desolate. Happily the floor mosaics are kept. On a ridge just above the church you can visit the Blue Chapel, a tiny and you only can enter via a small staircase. Probably it was a private chapel of a resident bishop, and not open for public. It's named after bluish Egyptian granite columns. From here, you can take a short climb to the Ridge Church, a small building of 18m by 13m. You need to do a short climb, to reach it and it's perched on a ridge at the northwest edge. From here, you can see the whole city centre in front and you can overlook the Wadi Turkmaniyyeh. This suggests this point was first used as a military lookout post, but it was converted in the late fourth century in a church. Archaeologist found a reason why the church was destructed. It didn't have any connection with the water system, and there are no remnants found close by this church. Archaeologists do believe that during the time at political instability, they used the stones to
The Corinthan Tomb The Corinthan Tomb The Corinthan Tomb

At the East Cliff, beloning to the Royal Tombs.
throw as to invaders. From this church you can visit the Temple of the Winged Lions, but you do have to approach it via a bridge to across the Wadi Musa. The Temple of the Winged Lions was named after a column featuring winged lions, but it probably would named the Temple of al-Uzza, as it seems it was dedicated to her. Probably this temple was built in the first century AD. Probably this temple had terraces and an open courtyard and a portico even in the temple itself. The floors had black, brown and white marble; the walls were decorated with painted plaster. Archaeologists found paints, pigments and plaster, so it suggests a painter should have a workshop in this temple as well. From here, you can take a walk to the Basin Restaurant. Here, you can take a drink, and food, and you can see the Wadi Musa coming together as a lake. If you want to have some rest, before take the hard climb to the Monetary, this is a great place I would suggest.

Before lunch, we should take the trail to the Monastery (ad-Deir or Ad-Dayr in Arabic). This trail is a huge staircase
Walking to the Colonnaded StreetWalking to the Colonnaded StreetWalking to the Colonnaded Street

In the back of the photo you can see the Colonnaded Street.
of 850 stairs (!), and do not expect these stairs as you probably have in your house or flat. The stairs are old, made out of rocks. Some passages are really bad, some passages are renovated, and other are build new. It's not just a stair right ahead, but you cross valleys and mountains during the trail. There is no elevator, so you have to do the pity climb. During the trail, you have to watch out for the donkeys. There are some stupid tourists take a ride up (and even down) to the stairs with a donkey. That means, if you walk, that you have to wait some passages so you can let a donkey pass. I would not dare to take a ride with a donkey, because the stair is not in a great condition and there might be one (young) kid as companion with sometimes 5 donkeys. You can hire a donkey, but I agree you’re a stupid bastard if you do. It is expensive, but that's not the problem. The problem is that the donkeys are treated horrible. Mostly kids (age 8-15) riding and walking along those donkeys, and they agree they can do everything with
Byzantine Petra ChurchByzantine Petra ChurchByzantine Petra Church

Its mosaic art.
the donkey what they want. That means those animals are beaten and tortured, even in public. What I saw, was just horrible. A young kid, I think 12 of age, was pissed off at his donkey, because the donkey refused to transfer some tourist. The kid took a (large) stone and beat it into the head of the poor donkey. Then, the kid got aggressive when we looked shocked and screamed very aggressive "It's my donkey and my business, not yours". I agree those kids also do not know better, they see it from other (older) kids as well, and imitate this behaviour. But you see a lot of kids here, even at market stands. I agree those kids should go to school, instead of working here to earn money to keep up with the family. Then, I think that a part of the problem of donkey torture will be solved. But the huge parts are by tourists. It's not hard to spot this torture, and you can see at the welfare of the donkey that they are treated horrible. Some walk limping, they have wounds and are underfed. You see tourist, some even more than 100 kg riding a small donkey. You really can see that the donkey sometimes is almost overturning by the weight off the tourist and the route they have to take, every day. I agree that tourists should not take a ride with these donkeys, it's easily to see that those animals are horrible treated. I can be a little bit angry at those tourists why they still take a ride with the donkeys; they pay, so they keep this horrible tradition alive. However, the stairs is very beautiful; you enter many beautiful passages in the Wadi Arabia. But the trail is hard. We took the trail at the heat of the day. Maybe not smart, but in the afternoon you see a lot more tourist. I walked with a group, and we needed 60 minutes to reach the top. Ok, we made some stops to rest, to enjoy the passages and the nature, sometimes watching at some stores. Halfway, we saw a man, when we took a stop. "You’re halfway", like whut? Halfway? For my feeling I already took almost all stairs. But that man was right. At the end the trail got really style up. A lady of a souvenir shop said to me "you’re just 2 minutes left". My heart was going mad, just 2 minutes? At the end, the stairs took a curve. Before that curve, Sandra, one of the group was sitting. "I could not take the last 10 steps anymore. So I took a rest. The others arrived, I hear them scream but I could not reach them". She got up and we finished. I walked to the cafe where the rest was sitting. I was tired so, I fell at the bench. "So, where is the Monastery?", I asked. Then, some people started to laugh. I didn't know why, so I started to look at my environment. O no, I almost was sitting close to it, at my left. I simply walked to the cafe, just not looking at my right when I was entering. Haha. Hello Monastery! I enjoyed its sight while take a drink and got my lunch. The Monastery is quite big, bigger than the Treasury. The name Monastery has to do probably because there is hanging a Christian cross into it, and they thought this was a church or monastery before. Actually, it was a temple, dedicated to the Nabatean King Obodas I, reigned
The Trail to the Monastery (start)The Trail to the Monastery (start)The Trail to the Monastery (start)

It looks easy, don't you think? That's what I tought to at this point... but it isn't!
in the last century BC. This temple was later used as church, so that's why a cross is hanging into it. You can enter the Monastery if you want, you can see the cross hanging, but it's "just" one room. After lunch, we went to check it out. Around the Monastery, you can check some great places, which give you great views of Wadi Arabia. They are also called as "Best viewpoint of the World". You have to climb some trails. There is just one way: up and down. With a group, we went to check them all out. Just enjoy the viewpoints. Here, you are back in nature, behind the city of Petra. You cannot see the Monastery anymore from this point, so it feels that you standing in the middle of the nature and mountain area. If you walk back, then you see the Monastery backing up. It's just beautiful. Because we would like to do the other trail to see the Treasury from above, we had to leave the Monastery, and going the same way down, 850 stairs. That cost us 30 minutes. We had to wait, because we had the incident with the donkeys and that
The Trail to the MonasteryThe Trail to the MonasteryThe Trail to the Monastery

Great viewpoints over the site and Wadi Arabia.
kid that beat them with the stone. We could not pass, because the donkeys were in shock and those stupid tourists could not ride it. What I've learned from my horse loving family is not to pass a horse (or donkey) close backwards. They might kick in panic.

After visiting the Monastery, I would like to take the trail to see the Treasury from above. So, we walked, with a group, again though the Colonnaded Street. As promised, I shall discuss now the south side, known as the side with the markets and the garden. First, I shall start at the "end" of the street (or at the beginning if you walk back to the Treasury). If you have time, take a quick look in the Basin Museum. Much art from buildings across the Colonnaded Street is placed into the museum. And yes, it's free (yeah, we Dutchies, haha). Close by the Basin Museum you can visits Nazzal's Camp. It was a hotel of the Nazzal family and it was a hotel in Petra with 11 rooms and build in 1943. Nowadays you cannot stay at night in this hotel, but archaeologists use this hotel as base for their
The MonasteryThe MonasteryThe Monastery

When you do the very short trails to visit some great viewpoints over Wadi Arabia, you find spots where you can make great pictures of the Monastery hidden in the Wadi Arabia.
work. From here, you can visit The Qasr-al-Bint, or Qasr-al-Bint-al-Faraoun "Palace of the Pharaoh's Daughter". Its name derives from a far-fetched Bedouin tale of the pharaoh. It's tale that after stashing his riches in the Treasury it he was desperate to let nothing slow him down in his pursuit of the Israelites, and build this place to stash his daughter away from safekeeping. This building is a temple, from the latest country BC. The temple is famous for its 3 meter high, freestanding alter of marble. From here, take a walk to the Temenous courtyard and the Temnous, a Roman temple. The ruins suggest there was a gate here, with freestanding columns. From here, you can visit the courtyard. These courtyards had a different Roman Baths, but nowadays visit able as three rooms. From here, we walked to the Great Temple, and build in the last century BC. It is not known which God was worshiped here, but archaeologists do not think this was a temple at all, but it might be a trade centre or a meeting centre for gatherings, later adapted to a council chamber. The building was quite big, 700 square meters and the biggest building in
Viewpoint over Wadi ArabiaViewpoint over Wadi ArabiaViewpoint over Wadi Arabia

This looks so beautiful, but in fact it's very hard to take a picture over such a great viewpoint.
Petra. You could access it via a staircase from street level and entered via a lower courtyard. At 25 meters above street level, you stand on the temple itself, there are four huge columns, and originally they were red. Also, you find here a theatre, about 7 meters in diameter and gave place to 600 people. This building was quite complex, it had many levels. You can spot even Indian elephants; this is a symbol how well-connected the traders were with the people in the Asian East. From here, you can visits the Garden Terrace, identified as gardens. Behind the garden, there was a large pool of 43 meters long and 24 wide and probably 2,5 meters deep. There was even a small island in the pool! This was probably a beauty and a resort which you only can afford nowadays with a lot of money.

Time to take the Danqur al-Khazneh trail, also known as the "hidden trail". I walked with a group which all want to do the Danqur al-Khazneh trail, because we stayed longer at the Viewpoints by the Monastery. But to be honest, I preferred to do the Trail of the High Places of Sacrifice, but I didn’t want to do it alone. So I joined the Danqur-al-Khazneh trail. Much people do not know this trail, but you can see the Treasury from a plateau above. It's also a pity climb, but I do not know how many steps you have to take. And I didn't across some other tourists. At this place, you really can enjoy the treasury from above, in all rest. The trails give you a nice overview of the city of Petra, but it also gives you a great trail into the mountains. We crossed a lonely Bedouin, giving us some directions. But we were with a group and you cannot get lost during this trail. When we reached the plateau, there was a tent where you can buy some coffee and tea. We took a sit on the plateau. On the pictures it looks like we sat very close by the edge, but in fact I stayed very safe, haha. I'm not afraid of height, but I still prefer to be safe. Two girls with fear of height also were sitting on the platform without any problems. From here, you really could enjoy the sight of the Treasury, in its full glory in the sunlight. And the (busy) plaza in front of it. If you have time, you really should do this trail or the trail to the High Places of Sacrifice. Sadly, I didn't take the last trail and I didn't visit the High Places of Sacrifice and all the other tombs and ruins that you pass during the trail. Finishing this trail, leads you to the south Part of Petra, where you can visit the Roman soldier grave, the Renaissance Tomb and the Triclinium. If you really want to see all of Petra, you have to visit Petra two days. Or, if you really hurry, become when Petra opens, don't spend much time at cafes, only take photo stops, and you are fit enough to finish all trails quite fast, you might be lucky to do it in one day. But still, then there are some other guided trails as well, bringing you (deep) into the Wadi Arabia, so if you really can spend 3+ days in Petra, Wadi Musa and Wadi Arabia. Because, I booked a Turkish Hammam in beginning of the evening before dinner, it was time to leave Petra and take the trail back. Some of the others already did the Turkish Hammam the day before, and decide to take a drink by a cafe. Some others cannot enter the optional excursion for the trail of the High Places of Sacrifice the next day, because they booked a horse riding trip in Wadi Musa (just as I) or want to have a free morning, so they decide to visit the High Places of Sacrifice today, so they skipped Danqur al-Khazneh trail, or decide to skip the trail of the High Places of Sacrifice. Some of them I’ve met just in front of the Colonnaded Street, when we walked back. We crossed the Street of Facades, and then it was time to see the Treasury for the last time. It was colures red pink in the sunlight. It still was breath taken. Sadly, it was time to say goodbye. This time for real, I wouldn't return tomorrow. We started to walk in the Siq, and turning around at the last curve. Goodbye Treasury, I don't know if I ever will see you again. Maybe we shall met again.

The bus was waiting at us. The others, which chose to leave later, shall take
Entrance to the Great TempleEntrance to the Great TempleEntrance to the Great Temple

To visit the temple, you must take this stairs of 25 meters.
a taxi. With the buss we drove back to the hotel. Time for my Turkish Hammam. The Tour leader told us that we should wear a bikini only, and bring one towel. We could use one towel of the hotel. The tour leader said she really liked the Hammam of our hotel, the best in Petra, and joined us as well. The Turkish Hammam was in our hotel, in fact it was diagonally opposite of my hotel room. I really liked that as a plus, so I do not have to walk in my tankini to the whole hotel, only covered in a towel. In my hotel room, I took a very quick shower, so I could wash my hair quickly and rinse the sweat of myself. I do not like it when you come sweated to the Hammam. I know it's a Turkish bathhouse, but thought it was kind of unhygienic if you do, especially you get a massage as well. In the Hammam only men were working. I thought that we woman should get a female employer, but we got man's too. It was not a problem for me, but I didn't expect this in an Arabic country.
The Great TempleThe Great TempleThe Great Temple

The Biggest building in Petra.
A hammam got 3 rooms. The first room that we entered was a Hararet. This small room is filled with steam. It became quite heath in the room, but I really do like it. I noticed it was quite relaxing, and we really had some fun. I really started to sweat, but I didn't felt myself dirty, or sweaty. One for one, we were brough to the second room. Because second and the third room were individual. Every room contained a marble, heated table where you have to lay down. If you start to lay down, they pour warm water above you. The Tellak (the employer) gave me in the second room a good scrub. The scrub was not hard, it was really nice, but you noticed the scrub was of good quality. They also wore scrub gloves. And I really had to take off my tankini top. At this point it was not easy that I wearied a tankini and not a bikini; because a bikini is just easy to click them lose... During the scrub they goat warm water at your body. That's so nice! After the second room, it was time for the third room, where you
Danqur al-Khazneh TrailDanqur al-Khazneh TrailDanqur al-Khazneh Trail

If you want to see the Treasury from above, you have to do the Danqur-al-Khazneh Trail. Do you see the Bedouin? That route we had to take.
got washed and massaged with a good soap. The soap is on a base of olive oil and it does soap. Again, I have to take off my tankini top and they goat water over your body. After the massage, we could take a hot tub, to relax. The hammam was so fine after visiting Petra. We took some hard climbs and trails, so it was lovely to take a hammam, got massaged and got a relax start of the evening. After the hammam we went to diner, and after diner it was time for some drinks. Most of our were tired of the day, and some of them shall leave again at 7 am for the Trail of the High Places of Sacrifice. Elianne and I, who shared a room, also had to wake up early, we shall be picked up by taxis at 9 for the horse riding excursion which we pre-booked. I really was tired and I really could sleep very well. I finally saw Petra. One of the New World Wonders. That brings me at 1/7 (or 8 if you agree that the Pyramids of Gaza in Egypt counts as well)... that means 6 (or 7)
Danqur al-KhaznehDanqur al-KhaznehDanqur al-Khazneh

The Treasury from above.
to go!


13th July 2015

i recommend al yakhor turkish bath
Best Offer 15JD only for One Hour Full Turkish Bath. Important notice ** This offer is accepted by advanced booking only. Al Yakhor Turkish bath is located in Quiet Street where next to Petra Palace hotel. Just 200m far from main gate of Petra. Freshen up with a centuries-old spa treatment. A scrub in a Turkish bath is not just part of a bathing ritual, it also helps with detox and enhancing our immune system.The Turkish bath, also known as a hammam, is the Middle Eastern variant of a steam bath. During the Ottoman Empire, Turkish baths served as places of social gathering and ritual bathing. Today people use the hammam as a pampering form of cleansing and relaxation.How the hammam works:The Turkish bath is modeled on the Roman system of bathing with a warm room, hot room and cool room. The bather enters the warm room where their body warms up, then enters the hot room, or steam room, which has water basins along the walls and a large heated stone platform in the center. The bather can rest on the stone to increase body temperature and promote sweating, then rinse off at the water basins. One of the main specialties of the Turkish bath is the foam and scrub massage where a masseuse or masseur lathers up the bather with a special cloth sack full of foam and scrubs off dirt and dead skin with a loofah. The bather can then continue to relax in the hot room and enjoy the therapeutic benefits of the steam and heat.

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