Blogs from South, Jordan, Middle East - page 4

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Middle East » Jordan » South » Dana Biosphere Reserve October 15th 2016

We've had another wonderful day today in Jordan. We left the hotel in Wadi Musa at 8 am this morning, for the drive along the King's Highway to Shobak Castle, a Crusader castle built in 1115 CE. The drive took maybe 45 min or so. Sami parked the mini bus and we walked uphill to the castle. The castle is quite imposing, perched on a hill. The sun was behind the castle so the light wasn't good for photos, but you can get the general idea. The castle was built by the Crusader king Baldwin I, and it withstood attacks from Salah al-Din before falling in 1189 after an 18 month siege. It was later occupied by the Mamluks in the 14th C. Some of the castle is restored, having been damaged by earthquakes in the ... read more
Shobak Castle
Walking up to the Castle
Walking up the to the Castle

Middle East » Jordan » South » Petra October 14th 2016

We were up early for breakfast around 6:30, and we left our hotel at 7:30, ready for our big day at Petra. Our hotel is only a few minutes walk from the gate to Petra. We got our tickets and walked through the gates, eager to explore Petra. We walked about 15 minutes until we entered the Siq, the famous narrow canyon which you walk through before emerging at the Treasury. It was downhill through this area, and through the Siq, a fact I didn't notice until I was walking up many hours later! Settlement in Petra goes back to Neolithic times, circa 7000 BCE, but it was the Nabateans who built the monuments you see today. The Nabateans arrived in the area in the 6th C BCE, established trade routes and for the next 500 ... read more
Susan at the Petra Visitor's Centre
Welcome to Petra!
Susan

Middle East » Jordan » South » Wadi Rum October 13th 2016

Today was a highlight for me: camel riding! We slept well in our tent in Wadi Rum and got up around 7, for breakfast at 7:30. Susan and I had a Turkish coffee with breakfast. I'm getting used to having several Turkish coffees a day! I left the tent for the bathroom last night around 11 or so and the campsite looked magical with the small lights around the tents and on the paths. The moon was super bright. We left the camp about 8:45 this morning, and got back into our jeeps for about a 15 min drive to where we met our camels. Everyone but Louise got on their camel for our 1 hour camel ride, though Jill didn't last long on her camel and was picked up by a jeep. The camel ride ... read more
Susan in front of our tent
Lori and Susan in front of our tent
Wearing Bedouin scarf

Middle East » Jordan » South » Wadi Rum October 12th 2016

I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world. - Mary Anne Radmacher It was nice having a later morning than usual this morning, but we were woken up at around 4:30 by the very loud call to prayer. We had a leisurely breakfast in the hotel and then Susan and I went for a walk around the streets of Aqaba around our hotel. We found a liquor store that was open so we bought a small bottle of gin, a couple of cans of tonic, and a bottle of Arak (the brand name is Haddad!). Turns out the brand name Haddad is very common (arak, rum, wine, etc). We left the hotel about 10:30 for the drive to Wadi Rum. The scenery was lovely the whole way, ... read more
Haddad Rum too
View from our hotel room in Aqaba
On the road to Wadi Rum

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba October 11th 2016

We were up, packed, and breakfasted, ready to leave at 8:15 this morning. Mohammed and Sami (our driver) were a little late picking us up at our hotel (Mohammed spent the night at the other hotel where 4 other new members of our group were staying). We met another new member, Patrick, from London, this morning at breakfast. The other four new members are a family from Brazil: Paloma and her mother Sonia, and Paloma's aunt Marisa and uncle Luis. Unfortunately we had a very sad incident this morning. I had just got into the mini van when I heard some commotion outside and people were staying "it's broken". I left the mini van to see Patrick on the ground, with one foot stuck out in a very unnatural position. He had tripped and fallen while ... read more
Desert Highway scenes
Aqaba
Our boat

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba June 12th 2016

Five days at sea from Oman to Aqaba, now getting up early to walk the decks as it is 31 by 6.30, Thursday now turning up towards Red Sea with Yemen on our right and Somalia on our left. Due in Aqaba Sunday morning 7.00a.m. Ship life is John playing table tennis every morning for three hours or so and myself laze on the deck reading a book and swimming! Steakhouse every week and happy hour every couple of days! John won the singles comp a couple of days ago and has also won the doubles with our excursion partner Joan, the 82 year old livewire! Were invited to the Chefs Table on board a couple of nights ago, it was sensational! Invited but it did cost us $125 a head for the privilege! Had appetizers ... read more
CHEFTS TABLE
CHEFS TABLE
CHEFS TABLE

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba May 11th 2016

Trip to Tel Aviv This was quite a spontaneous trip but I love spontaneity! In fact applying to become a Divemaster in Tenerife was purely spur of the moment. As after watching a documentary about SCUBA diving and having an urge to live, work and travel abroad for a lengthy amount of time I applied that same evening to Tenerife Divemaster Academy and paid for it using money I would have easily pissed away on a 2 month trip to South America or something. I received a message from an old friend who I used to be really close with in my teens as she lived on the same street as me in Liverpool. Rachael is her name and she told me on Facebook that she was going to Tel Aviv for a weekend break in ... read more
Cool coat hangers!
There were 100 bottles of beer on the wall
In the Market

Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba May 10th 2016

Well well well hasn’t this been a long time? The blog is back for just a one off to kind of catch up where I’m up to now that I’m nearly 9 months, but if I got a bunch of likes on Facebook then WHO KNOWS. I’m kind of a whore with Facebook likes so if I get a lot then the blog may make a return somehow… But this blog is just a brief thing I put together as I just wanna catch up to where I am now and talk about the exciting things in Aqaba happening now! Basically I haven’t written a Blog for over 5 months now because I’ve just been so damn busy! Plus I’m a bit lazy. But I think I left off when me and my dad were going ... read more
Welcome to The Treasury
Such a poser
Dad drinking Bedouin tea

Middle East » Jordan » South March 31st 2016

Finally, I have made it to Petra, Jordan. Was so excited that i showed up at the meeting place very early. Turns out the other 12 people in our group felt the same. We got started from Aqaba, Jordan, before the time set. Two hour trip in a small van/bus and we were there. Nice entrance and staging area. We had a guide who said his father was born in a cave in Petra. He relates that everyone knows him there, and it appeared so. We went down the siq and had few people around. It had rained for 2 days prior so the last part of the siq walk was in water or jumping from higher ground to higher ground. When the siq opened up to show the treasury there were groups that had caught ... read more
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Middle East » Jordan » South » Aqaba March 24th 2016

We set sail from Salalah and it was time for the dreaded six days at sea. We had to head down through the Gulf of Aden between Somalia and Yemen and then into the Red Sea. I’m sure I don’t need to mention the pirates in the area that could have potentially made it the most exciting part of the trip. We saw none, however. But the Aegean Odyssey was prepared nonetheless. Coils of razor wire were strategically placed around the ship where boarders could potentially target. Also on board were a small number of security personnel who looked like they were ex-military. We did not see them about much, but we were assured they were there. We also found out they were armed when on Saturday morning it was announced that we would be rendezvousing ... read more
The're taking our guns!
American aircraft carrier
Shipwreck on a coral island




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