Monday, October 06, 2014

Monday, October 06, 2014

day of castles and petra by night

Posted by Hippo Bean at 11:00 PM
I dont remember anything of Kerak from my first trip to Jordan. Not much to see here because it's either total ruins or renovated. We drove through below sea level on the mujeb canyon and dam. The scenery was quite spectacular. Shobak followed Kerak as the second crusader castle of the day. I specifically chose this Lawrence of Arabia's trip because it covered both castles. Shobak was even in a sadder shape. But it contained tunnels and we went inside one. It's a bit more interesting than Kerak, as it's in the middle of the desert with only a small town near it, while Kerak was in the middle of a large town, the castle surrounded by houses and highways.

for lunch, Moe provided us with a jordanian hotdog, followed by several veggie pies, one in particular was very yummy and topped with thyme. another one with tomatoes, jordanian pizza? A small cucumber, a banana and an apple each.

22 years ago, I remember the jordanian kings highway, long, smooth, traffic free. We saw bedouin tents with camels along the way. We've made a stop at a large tent that had a few camels nearby and a rollsroyce parked next to the tent. We were offered watermelon and small glasses of hot sweet tea. This time, the Kings highway was busy with cars and buildings along it. However, once we've entered the Negev desert, crowded noisy civilization dissipated , and the silence of the desert took over. The below sea level Mujeb valley with the lovely dam was tranquil and very picturesque. We stopped at a vistapoint that offered grand views of the valley, the canyon and the dam. The lake, created by the dam, was very blue and provided a brilliant contrast to the surrounding orange and brown arid land. Very lovely place.

We ended the day in Petra, in a hotel that was 700m to the entrance to the rose city. 4 of us did Petra by Night. It's also one of the highlight of the trip, and I even brought the Daiso flashlight that shined in different colors, just for this. We walked through the ciq under an almost full moon high above the sheer vertical rocky walls. 500 candles lined our way. It was like almost in a dream as we navigated in the narrow path between tall dark rocky walls, and made many stops to photograph the moon in the rocky walls openings. The walk ended in front of the Treasury, with about a 100 candle lanterns laid on the floor in front of it. We got there late and all the carpeted seats were taken, so we settled on the dirt floor in front of the Treasury, right next to the musician. Sitting with lanterns all around and with the imposing Treasury in front of us, only illuminated by the candles and by the moon, was surreal. Fiona's backpack knocked one of the lanterns out but luckily she didnt catch on fire, so we've made a joke about her being baptized by fire in Petra. They played jordanian rebab (bowed string instrument) and flute to entertain us. It was a magical way to see petra.

Crusader Castles photos:

Mujeb photos:

Petra by Night photos:



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