It seems like every travel related website, blog and magazine I read lately includes a story about Jordan. After reading these stories and looking at the pictures, it has jumped very high on my bucket list. I guess I’m in good company since the Smithsonian Magazine named Petra, Jordan as one of 28 places you need to visit before you die.
The new obsession first started when I began to see a lot of pictures from Jordan on the G Adventures Facebook feed. I also read the January 2013 Lonely Planet Traveller Middle East issue that had a nice overview of Petra, a UNESCO heritage site and one of the modern seven wonders of the world. A walk through the Siq, or narrow passageway that leads to Petra, would be enough of a reason for me to visit alone. The pictures of the journey to the site invoke a sense of adventure and mystery, don’t you think?
Can you imagine walking through that path in the red rock and then emerging to discover this ancient city for the first time? The first site upon emerging from the Siq is the Treasury, the most elaborate ruin carved into the rock.
And if you are up for some more hiking, you can visit the Monastery. It sounds like the hike is fairly strenuous, which doesn’t bother me, but my fear of heights might get in the way and the hike definitely doesn’t sound kid friendly. Here is a picture of the Monastery – look at how small the man in the picture appears.
Other tourist highlights from Jordan include Wadi Rum, known as the Valley of the Moon. While visiting, I would love to stay in a Bedouin camp and explore the desert.
And there’s also the Dead Sea. I wonder if my boys will be able to float in the water that is almost nine times saltier than the ocean? It’s the lowest point on Earth and obviously has a tremendous history as well.
We have never been on a group tour for an entire vacation because we generally like to control our itinerary and design a trip that is tailored to our interests. However, it’s a whole lot of work for a OCD, control freak detail oriented person to plan a vacation and time is something that I’m a bit short on these days between parenthood and work. I could definitely see us using G Adventures at some point.
I like the philosophy and approach of G Adventures in which they promote Sustainable Tourism and try to keep as much money as possible from the tour in the hands of local people. They use local guides, accommodations and transportation as much as possible, which also helps to create a more authentic travel experience. I would love to go on one of their family trips to Jordan or Borneo, but the minimum age for most of the family trips that I saw was 5-8 years old.
Are there any places that came up recently on your radar that you are dying to visit?