I went to Jordan at this time as I didn't really have much money and I was limited due to travelling in the winter months. I flew into Amman and spent a week acclimatizing to the country, exploring the city and I also went on a couple of day long road trips to visit a dolmen field and the north east close to the Golan Heights area.
I stayed in a hostel downtown and enjoyed mixing with salt of the earth people and trying all the foods on offer such as lambs brain and falafel. The city was interestingly built on 7 hills which allows you to get great views of the heavily built up area covered in mosques and there were layers and layers of history demonstrated in the Roman ruins and Ottoman palaces. On the Friday in the city there was a huge call to prayer and the streets were cleared, flattened cardboard boxes were given out as prayer matts and there was a massive communal pledge to Allah. Right
The 2 day trips were very different; one was with a professor from a university in the city who I met online and who agreed to help me in a film making project for the Modern Explorers and the other road trip was with 3 other backpackers who were also bored in Amman. The dolmen had really cool little doorways to them and were really photogenic and the trip around the north east was great as we saw Roman ruins, the community spirit of the people (2 men stopped and fixed our back wheel), some hotly contested land on the border and we also touched the Jordan river where Jesus was supposed to have been baptized.
From Amman I travelled south to Wadi Musa to volunteer in a hotel that I had arranged though workaway; 5 hours work a day in exchange for bed and board, which really helped due to the surprisingly high prices in Jordan. While in Wadi Musa I visited Little Petra (12km from the main site there is a baby version)
From Petra I went to the Wadi Rum desert to volunteer with a couple of brothers who I also met through workaway. They asked me to make a promotional video for their camp which worked out great as I got to experience all that their customers could do like riding camels, sand dune boarding, eating food cooked in the ground, sleeping under the stars and riding trucks around the beautiful desert scenery.
When we visited the dolmen we field we found that most of them had been destroyed which prompted me to make the film Save the Dolmen.
Spending time in Taybeh was fascinating as we really felt like we were in a place that most tourists don’t go to see and you could tell by the reaction of the people how little interaction
I left Jordan liking the country more than I thought I would and this was mainly due to the people I met during the month I was travelling around; I always felt welcome and I really appreciated the community spirit which I experienced nearly everyday I was there. Hitch-hiking was a great experience seeing how people would phone other people to stop and pick us up and they always insisted on buying us food and drink. One thing I didn’t like about Jordan was the feeling of being ripped off, the prices were high and a lot higher for tourists for example Petra was a minimum of 50 Euros to get in but you soon get used to haggling so make sure to add Jordan to your list of places to see.
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