Jordan:To Dead Sea though Petra.
When I was organizing my travels, looking for news about Jordan, I found many long articles describing the emotions that this country conveys but very few with really useful tips.
That is why I’d like to offer a summary of the most important experiences and advices with the aim of being of some help to future travelers.
Are you ready? Well! Yes let’s go!
Duration: 12 days
Itinerary: bespoke, made by me for the two of us.
Month: end of November.
Flight: Linate / Rome / Amman
Here it comes my first recommendation: I advise you to evaluate carefully the timetables of direct flights as many of them arrive to Amman around 2 am… One of the things I give priority to when I travel abroad is safety.
It is never a good idea to arrive very late at night in an unknown country, where we don’t speak local language, maybe expecting to arrive to the hotel via public transportation.
Here I take the opportunity to clarify another crucial topic.
Is Jordan a safe country?
The news we sometimes see on television about Middle East scares many of us. Jordan’s proximity to Syria and Iraq raises questions.
Well, Jordan is a peaceful and safe country. Both those who travel in groups and alone feel comfortable and happy to be in such a special country.
Traveling around Jordan as you please is quite simple and with a minimum of attention it is safe. Like everywhere in the world a bit of common goodsense never hurts, especially for women travelling alone.
It will not be unusual for you to see enough police presence during your journey through Jordan.
It is a country aware of what it has to offer, willing to promote tourism and conscious that, in order to do that, it must offer safety to its visitors.
Even for those who choose to rent a car and take a trip “on the road”, the routes are in excellent condition.
As a matter of fact renting a car and driving was our initial plan!
We knew that the traffic in Amman was terrible, so, once we arrived at the airport at 7 pm, we took a taxi and headed to the hotel, determined to move through the city by taxi or by a chauffeur-driven car, a service available at our hotel Landmark Amman Hotel & Conference Center and then rent a car on the day we left Amman for Petra.
That’s how we met Ayman, our driver for the two days in Amman, where we had enough time to see the main attractions.
Important: to visit over 40 places of interest in Jordan, I recommend you to buy the Jordan Pass, which also includes the ViSa, which should be paid at the airport. It is very convenient and is purchased ONLY from your country of origin on the official website.
When I travel, I also like to discover and taste the local cuisine. If you are in Amman, do not miss the Sufra restaurant, with authentic Jordanian cuisine.
The restaurant is well known, one of the 5 best restaurants in the city…This is why you need to book a table well in advance!
Ayman, who spoke perfect English unlike many, knowing that I love baklava (the typical Arabian dessert, made of layers of very thin puff pastry surrounding a mixture of honey, walnuts, pistachios and lots of sugar!) took us to the best place in Amman where they make these delicious sweets; thereI saw how they make them, ate them and even took a box at home,(well two to be honest !). Unexpected and very welcome surprise for me, always looking for new exciting discoveries!
“Welcome to Jordan” is the phrase that will remain in my heart forever.
I heard it thousands of times during the whole trip, said by children, taxi drivers, by the people working at the ticket counters, at the museums …. Every Jordanian seemed willing to welcome us personally, with a big smile and their mixed expression of pride for their land and gratitude to the tourists visiting their country.
It was for his very same kind attitude that when Ayman offered us to organize all our transfers at almost the same cost of the car rental, with fuel and GPS … that we said YES.
The next day we got up very early in order to avoid the morning traffic jam in Amman that we had suffered the day before and thus leave towards Petra. At 6:30 we were already in Ayman’s car on a wonderful November morning with the colors of a clear dawn still caressing the city skyscrapers.
We headed to Petra through King’s Road
This road is a journey within a journey.
Curves after curves, my boundless joy, breathtaking scenery and small villages where time seems to have stopped centuries ago, silently testify a place full of history, a place that for 10 days will also be a bit yours.
To go from Amman to Petra it takes 3 hours if you go non-stop; however along this itinerary there are many interesting places to see such as Madaba and Mount Nebo (where Moses saw the promised land) among others, it all depends on the time available.
The Jordanian currency, the Dinar, is higher than the Euro so every expense should be carefully thought out. In spite of this we haven’t saved on hotels.
In Petra we chose the Movenpick Resort Petra for two nights (bare minimum) … unbeatable location.
We checked in quickly, dropped our bags and ran to discover new and exciting adventures in Petra.
From here every word is superfluous, the heart pounded in our chest as we headed to the entrance. We entered the Siq, a canyon created by tectonic forces and smoothed by water over the millennia. After each step the expectation and emotion grew, as soon we would have been in front of one of the best and desired postcards in the world. We hoped every corner turned was the last, finally here it is, after an almost 3km walk, El Khasneh, the Treasury of Petra.
It doesn’t take many words to talk about Petra, the only thing I can say is that it is worth all the fame it has!
If you decide to travel to Jordan, keep in mind that it’s worth waking up early and get ready to walk! (I recommend wearing something robust but light). There are more comfortable places to spend a few days on vacation, where to lie in the sun and the only four steps required are to get into the water, but, well, the stress of doing nothing in Jordan is not valid!
To be continued…