“I have always loved the desert. One sits down on a desert sand dune, sees nothing, hears nothing. Yet through the silence something throbs, and gleams.” Antoine De Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince
‘Ahlan wa sahlan’ – Welcome to Jordan!
The area that is now the Kingdom of Jordan has a strong tradition of welcoming people, from caravans and traders passing through the desert, to crusaders, the Romans, writers inspired by the desert landscape and even the famous T.E. Lawrence.
Jordan is also a nation of refugees. From early on in the establishment of the Kingdom, when over a million Palestinian refugees entered, to large influxes of Iraqis in the late 1990s and early 2000s, to more recently, hosting refugees from Syria and Northern Africa who are fleeing war and conflict.
And despite the challenges with balancing this integration and the surrounding instability of the region, Jordan manages to continue to be a safe and welcoming place for tourists. Ahlan wa sahlan – Welcome to Jordan!
Why I Love Jordan
I first visited Jordan in 2014, on holiday from my job in Uzbekistan. I’m not sure it was top of my list at that time – but, hey, it was the cheapest flight from Central Asia and you take what you get.
I fell in love instantly, with the warm sweet Jordanian tea, the soft desert light, hectic streets of Amman and vibrant history. People were open and welcoming. I hitched rides and shared meals with strangers, hiked wadis (canyons), swam in the Red Sea, saw Petra and camped under the stars in the desert of Wadi Rum. And then, in late 2015, I returned for a job with the UN and spent a year doing much of the same.
Throughout my time in Jordan I took a LOT of photographs.
In this post, I’ve included 20 of my favorite photos to inspire you to visit the lunar landscape of Jordan and take a step into the middle east!
And if you are finally convinced, check out my post on how to spend two weeks exploring Jordan, including tips for traveling around.
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