“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
Once upon a time I lived and worked in Jordan. During that time I was able to explore a lot of the country. And let me tell you, Jordan is INCREDIBLE! There are so many beautiful places to visit throughout the country. Here are some of my favorite spots for two weeks in Jordan + some tips for getting around.
There are so many beautiful spots in Jordan – from spending the night in the other worldly red desert of Wadi Rum, to exploring ancient and impressive Petra, to floating in the Dead Sea, or hiking in the many Wadis (canyons) around the country. BUT my absolute favorite spot and thing to do in Jordan is to hike in Dana Nature Reserve and spend the night at the beautiful Rummana Campsite.
After 3 hours of yelling at iMovie last night, I successfully made my very first video! Just a few snippets of a most perfect week road-tripping around Jordan showing my favorite person some my favorite places in this beautiful country. Sorry in advance for all of the bumpy images, I’m an amateur!
After a few days in the desert, we caught a cheap bus to Wadi Musa (Petra) from Wadi Rum. The bus travels down the picturesque King’s Highway. Once in Wadi Musa we went for a coffee where we found someone to drive us out to Little Petra and then to Banda. Little Petra was deserted and there wasn’t an entry fee so we wandered around and then had the usual, tea.
Passing through a military style checkpoint, our cab driver pointed ahead and to the left, I gave him 30 JD, we took our bags from the trunk and took our first breath of cool, dry desert air. Cool, as it would later be discovered is a bit of an understatement as temps hovered around 50 with no wind and below freezing at night. With inadequate clothing, we hopped into the jeep with our 20-year-old guide Muhammad and into the desert we went.
The bus system in Israel is efficient, relatively cheap, and they even have free wifi (which is a hot commodity in Uzbekistan and you better believe I used every minute of it). After a few relaxing days in Tel-Aviv we boarded the Egged bus for the southern resort town of Eilat.
We took the bus on a Sunday so it was nearly filled with soldiers going back from their weekend leave. I’d recommend keeping this in mind when planning your trip. The landscape going south was dry and arid. As we reached closer to the border with Jordan, it looked like some sort of lunar landscape. Although we had boarded a bus to the Israeli town of Eilat, we had our sites set on the small town of Aqaba on the Jordanian side of the Red Sea.
A year ago I fell prey to one of those silly internet bucket lists. You know, the ones titled “10 Things Every 25 year-old Should Know” or “96238347 Places to Visit Before 30”. At first you feel inspired and then you just feel like a couch potato doing nothing while everyone else figures out all the bullet points to being a real adult. I hate those. Around the same time I read an article about how writing down goals makes you more likely to accomplish them. Feeling both inspired, agitated, and in a bit of a standstill with life I decided to write down 25 things I’d like to do while I’m 25. I’m stubborn, so as I wrote down numbers one, two and twenty-one I knew I’d do them even if friends thought it was a bit overly ambitious. Now folding 1000 paper cranes, I don’t know how I ever thought I could actually do that.