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"Welcome to Jordan" (May & June 2014)
Jordan was the last stop on our trip around the world and we enjoyed the historical places and the beautiful nature and landscapes.
We started our trip through Jordan in the the capital Amman. After exploring the city for some days we continued south to Jordan's most famous attraction - Petra.
Petra - the monastery
Petra - the monastery. Look at the person close to the entry to get an idea how big it is...
Petra is an ancient city with very impressive buildings carved out of the rock. The photos can't do it justice properly and can't transport how big the buildings are. Although Petra is a major attraction we were able to experience it almost for ourselves by being at the right time at the right place. You just have to make sure to get in either very early (Petra opens at 6AM) or late in the afternoon.
Petra is very impressive during the day but at 3 nights in the week it is also possible to visit parts of it during the night which is really nice as well.
After admiring Petra for 3 days we went to the ocean in the southern tip of Jordan to relax at the pool of our hotel and to go swimming and snorkeling in the ocean. The marine life was really incredible - so many colorful fish and beautiful corals. As it was the middle of May it was incredibly hot and we only survived the days by jumping into the water every hour ;-)
the view from our balcony in Aqaba
the view from our balcony (the only good thing about our first hotel room) in Aqaba
After 3 rather lazy days at the ocean we continued our journey to the Wadi Rum desert. We decided to book an organized trip through the desert and one night in a so called Beduin camp. During the day we were driven around in a Jeep which luckily had a sun roof :-) Wadi Rum is a sand desert with lovely rocky formations and canyons to walk and climb through. After a very exciting day we had delicious food in the Beduin camp, were told some of their traditions and we ended the evening with looking at one million stars in the very clear desert air.
Wadi Rum
Wadi Rum
Next up was the Dana nature reserve - a lovely small village above a deep valley which is currently being restored. We spent some days there and enjoyed the silence, hiking and the delicious food.
hitching a ride to Dana. naturally we were offered tea...
hitching a ride to Dana. Naturally we were offered tea...
From Dana we went back to Amman to organize the next days. On the roof of our hostel we met 3 lovely Germans who had done the "Allgäu - Orient - Rallye" from Germany to Jordan. They were so kind to give us their car for a day for free :-) We did a road trip to the dead sea and drove along the mountain roads around Amman. After a very long time without a car it was wonderful to have the freedom of going wherever you want to go again.
floating in the dead sea
floating in the dead sea
Our last stop in Jordan was Jerash - famous for its ancient roman ruins.
roman ruins in Jerash
roman ruins in Jerash
And just like that one year had passed and our wonderful, unforgettable trip around the world was over...
in Jordan we had the worst "value for money" accommodation on our entire trip.
Jordanians seem to smoke a lot. Additionally smoking seems to be allowed (almost) everywhere. "Smoking forbidden" signs in a local bus certainly does not stop them from smoking.
Similar to Iran everybody greeted us on the street. We heard "Welcome to Jordan" approximately one thousand times.
During 2,5 weeks in Jordan we only had contact with a working woman once (!!). The Jordanian society - at least in public - seems to be very male-focussed - much more than for example in Iran.
Jordan was much smaller than expected. The distances are really short and for us it was very unusual that changing a destination only took around 3 hours. Jordan was also the only country on our entire trip where we ended up having more time than needed - a very odd feeling.