Road to Jordan

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Middle East » Jordan
December 24th 2009
Published: August 31st 2010
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Road to Jordan

6 Day Extension to our Egypt Tour

We visited: Aqaba -> Mt Nebu-> Dead Sea (Christmas Lunch at The Spa Resort) -> Petra -> Wadi- Rum Desert ->Agaba

So we had so much fun in Egypt and after having rested in Dahab for 4 days part of our tour (10 people out of 60 to be precise) moved to Jordan. We crossed to Agaba by speed boat which was very pleasurable ride if not the fact that the captain and the crew were trying to smuggle some money to Jordan.... After 5 min of taking off another boat approached us and throw a pile of money on board...Why would you do that when each of the shores is so close and police patrols observe everything at all times??? So immediately after Police patrol gave signs to come back to the port and they arrested the crew - we had no idea what was going on what so ever and if we would be able to take off again but maybe 5 min later we got a new captain and we were ready to go again... it all seemed to have happen so fast and in such an obvious way that it was hard to believe ;-)

We came to Agaba Port and the coach took us to our hotel. We got whole afternoon off so we went to wander around the town...It was nothing special except for all those food markets. And what a change to a local behaviour??? We were not once asked to give a tip, not once harassed in any way to buy sth and on the contrary we were given thing to try for FREE!!! I could not believe it after 2 weeks in Egypt - how two lands so close to each other can be so different?? Anyway we tried the amazing pancakes and baklavas - everything fresh from the oven and so so tasty. Hmm I thought - it must have been my favourite place to eat ;-) The best thing we tried on the street were the stuffed pastries (with cheese, meet, herbs, pizza toppings etc). I think we ordered like 8 different ones and we were watching them being prepared for us in the stone oven ;-) Each was maybe 15p which for Jordan is very cheap. That is another difference between Egypt and Jordan - Jordan being quite expensive. As Jordanian Dollar is worth almost the same as GBP and everything seemed to be expensive. After eating way to much we headed back to the hotel and just in front of the hotel we found really nice cafe so we sat down and had nice Turkish Coffee and smoke some shisha;-) The same evening our guide was taking us for dinner and obviously he chose the least 'local' place for us to eat. The whole group protested straight away as everybody by now understood that the best food is where locals are. So we kindly asked Mahmut to take us where he would eat and so he did. I am sure he was not very happy about it as they all get commission for bringing tourists to posh restaurants and he gets to eat more Western dishes for free. Nevertheless he did not complain and we had amazing feast in a local restaurant for less than a 7-8£ each.

The next day we headed inland to see the Mt. Nebu (Moses mountain) and later on we enjoyed 5h stay in a luxury spa hotel where we had our Christmas lunch. We splashed our selves in dead see mud and it was just brilliant;-) My skin was never that soft I must say so it was worth to buy some of this stuff to take home;-)

Next stop - Petra - the place we all were waiting for so long;-) We stayed in the hotel at the gate to Petra site so we had just few steps down to the entrance. There is a so called Cave Bar - claimed to be oldest bar in the world - and we had really nice evening there incl fancy drinks and dancing;-) Bought the pass for 2 days and was amazed to discover that a % of the ticket fee ( I think 5£ of 14£) goes to the animal hospital for working horses, camels and donkeys on the site. I really liked that idea;-) Our guide Mahmut was actually an archeologists and he did a lot of excavations on site so he could talk and talk and talk about the place all day. Second day we went on our own and we climbed up the monastery as well as the sacrifice area. What a view. Generally the whole site makes you speechless when you imagine what this civilization of people achieved, how they constructed and build a beautiful city around the canyon ;-)

From Petra we were taken on the 2 day trip to The Valley of the Moon - Wadi Rum. We were not very excited about the night in the desert as we had done this before but this was far the best one we had. It was a Bedouin Camp and everybody got their own 'room' meaning small hat/tent with proper floor and bed. It was great and the social area was this big tent with a fire place in the middle where we had dinner and we were entertained by locals. Fantastic time. Except for Petra would say the highlight of the Jordan trip.

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