THE MIDDLE EAST & EUROPEAN SERIES PT2
PETRA – KARAK CASTLE – DEAD SEA
After getting to know the taxi drivers of Amman I made it to Wadi Musa with the help of the local bus.
I COULD NOT BELIEVE I COULD GET ANOTHER ONE OF THE WONDERS ALL TO MYSELF AGAIN
It was getting late and I checked into Petra Gate Hostel, a really basic hotel about 20 minutes walk from Petra itself. However, if you want convenience then I would suggest the Mövenpick Resort as it is right next to the visitor centre
WHERE IS PETRA?
Petra, an incredible wonder
There is a fair bit of walking if you want to see it all. However there are Donkeys and Camels which you can for to do the walking for you but can be very slow and expensive during peak times. Getting to the Treasury is not a walk I would miss.
From the visitor centre it’s only 15 minutes and all downhill. The last 5 minutes is a highlight with the incredible rock formations and the opening into the Treasury. I took around 15 minutes just taking photos here
If you want to do it right you have to stay for at least 2 days, 3 days if you can push it then head south to Wadi Rum. Either way there is a lot of walking involved and the heat can get insane. There were times that I considered turning back as it seemed to go on for ever but be sure never to turn around until you have reached the Monastery. The majority of people get to the Treasury and think they’ve seen it all which couldn’t be further from the truth.
THE WALK TO THE MONASTERY
No visit to Petra is complete without checking out the Monastery. For me it’s as good if not better than the Treasury. Most people are put off by the long walk, it takes around 2 hours one way. Though don’t be deterred, the walk takes you passed more sites such as the Street of Facades, the Theatre and Colonnaded Street. You can also spilt the walk with regular intervals at the few coffee shops or stalls that you will pass.
I done this alone because I wanted to do it at my own pace but when I return (I want to show my parents) I will get a guide. I done my own research before and after but there is really no substitute to having a local guide at your disposal. There were other places I wanted to visit but I was never entirely sure how to get there, having a guide would have solved all of these problems.
- Barter with donkey/camel handlers
- Ensure they do not mistreat their animals
- Set out where you want to go and if you need a return
I didn’t realise I had actually arrived at the monastery until I turned around but again that was not the highlight. Walking on past the Monastery you will eventually come to an elevated view point and that’s where you can enjoy the most insane views with the Monastery on one side and Canyons as far as you can see on the other. Tip – look out for the End of the World Coffee.
THE DEAD SEA
After yesterday’s sweat filled day it was time to head back up north to Amman but having missed out on the Dead sea in Israel I had this time decided to get a taxi up north so I could stop a few other sites. Much better than my taxi experience 2 days ago.
I took the slower but much more scenic route back to Amman and stopped at off at Karak Castle, built by the King of Jerusalem in the 12th Century. This was as a recommendation from the driver which was appreciated and then the Dead Sea. It was great to finally put the myth to bed and I can confirm that you can in fact float in the Dead Sea. Karak Castle just a few months earlier.
- PEOPLE – 7.5/10
- BACKPACKING – 7/10
- SAFETY – 7/10
- WEATHER – 8/10
- THINGS TO DO – 8/10
- VALUE – 8/10
- HIGHLIGHT – Petra
- LOWLIGHT – The taxi
- MVP – Hussain
- VISIT AGAIN – Absolutely
- RATING – 8/10
Part of me wished I took my time here but I know I’ll be back to see everything again and anything I missed. One of my favourite wonders of the world.
Lebanon and Cyprus. Click to read.
SAFE TRAVELS, DS x
- Have you visited Jordan, where did you visit?
- Did you see Petra?
- What was your favourite part?
Let me know in the comments below . . .