The Magical Desert
Trip Start Sep 09, 2012
3Trip End Sep 20, 2012
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Where I stayed
Jerusalem à Masada à Eilat à Aqaba à Petra
Our guide picked us up at the King David and we were so sad to go! But the trip down the Dead Sea and on to Aqaba was fun and interesting.
We drove out of Jerusalem and quickly saw the lush, greens give way to dry desert and bar mountains. Our guide took us on a couple of side trips, one up to one of the high points from where we could get a new perspective on the Dead Sea. The other was to the shores of the Dead Sea where we took a dip in the water (and Paul got mud smeared all over him) while the guide got a massage.
We then drove to Masada where we had hoped for an interesting visit to the site
We were then transported to our hotel in Aqaba. I was feeling a bit hesitant about walking about given the things that were happening during our time there so we ate at the hotel and it left much to be desired. It was kind of dark and dumpy. Of course we had been spoiled for 4 days in Jerusalem.
The next morning our guide showed up to drive us to Petra. He wasn’t a guide, but just our driver
Upon our arrival to Petra we met our guide, Mohammad. He was GREAT! Not only did he have much information for us, but he kept us moving quickly (we got our exercise that day). We covered a lot of ground and had a great day. We walked miles, climbed some very steep areas to get great views, rode a donkey for a few miles, visited a pretty fantastic medieval castle and even stopped at the guide’s house for fresh apple juice from apples growing in his garden. We had a very long day with much exciting sites and history.
To our delight, Petra Moon hotel was an upgrade from the hotel in Aqaba. The next morning, our new guide (Mohammad) picked us up in his 4 wheel drive vehicle to give us a tour of Wadi Rum. He is a Bedouin from the area who was interesting and fun and provided us with a wonderful experience. We climbed a bit, saw camels running wild in the desert, and traveled at fast speeds across silky sand and up/down sand dunes. We pretended to be comrades of Lawrence of Arabia in a hot 2011 4-wheel drive car
This is the image I want to end this blog with. Later that evening we crossed the border back to Israel in time to take a late night flight back to Tel Aviv. We were two tired puppies by the time we got to our hotel—but we were two quite content people. We saw wonderful sights, met kind, interesting people and I hope represented good Americans abroad.
Tomorrow we head back home. It will be nice to get back to our home.