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This trip was taken in November-December 2001 and started in Amman and ended in Aquaba with a ferry crossing the Gulf of Aquaba to Nuweiba, Egypt. Tourism was at an all time low and major tourist sites, such as Petra, had only 3-5% of the usual visitors. While this made conditions nice for lack of crowds and choice of hotel rooms at very competitive rates, it also restricted access to sites and events (such as the 'Petra at Night' and camel trips out of Wadi Rum) since very few tour operators were operating their services due to lack of people. Of course to make things even more interesting, this vacation was taken during the holy month of Ramadan where fasting occurs during daylight hours and many businesses shut down in the early afternoon to prepare for their 'break fast' immediately following sundown. See more info about this country and others on my Virtual Tourist homepage.
The city of Madaba is located just south of Amman and is famous for its mosaicsTypical mosaic in Madaba. You could spend hours in each of the many archeological sites looking at the tileworkMt. Nebo is apparently where Moses looked over the promised land.
From the top of Mt. Nebo you can look over the promised lands of Jordan and Israel (or "occupied Palestine")The Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth and the highest salinity. It makes swimming an interesting challenge and you find out fast where any cuts are on your body.Jordan is famous for its sand bottle art. You can get one custom made for about JD1
Along the King's Highway gives some pretty neat scenery.The road switchbacks many times while going down and up this valley.The passages of Karak
Looking out an opening at Karak -- you can image someone dumping a nice vat of hot oil from here onto invadersTime to try baking some middle eastern staples... it only took three tries to lay the dough flat in the ovenThe finished product
Looking down to the entrance of Petra in Wadi Musa. The more expensive hotels are here, but the cheaper ones are just up the hill and only a JD1 taxi ride awayOne of the first sights after entering PetraAfter a long walk through the Siq you finally reach the Treasury
It's a pretty impressive building and you could spend hours just admiring it, but there's so much more to PetraThe exit of the Siq where you get your first view of the Treasury
Donkeys are used to transport soft drinks, snack foods, and humans around PetraThe same donkey decides that there are some good snacks in the garbageThe theatre
The theatre, looking down from near the top. The acoustics are amazing!Cool rock formations and patterns are everywhereOverlooking some of the other buildings
A nice cool kaleyfah to keep the sun off your head and neckMany structures of Petra have been damaged, so reconstruction of buildings is always going onCamels also give tourists rides. Its kind of like sitting on a very tall and fat horse. Hang on while the camel stands or sits.
Boys offer tourists 'air conditioned donkey rides' to the Monastery.Overlooking the city of PetraA rock with a hole, so what? Actually this is where I hid my Petra Geocache
Okay time to try out a camel for a couple of JD. Apparently this camel really likes beer.Infront of the Treasury againWadi Musa at dusk
Always choose your hotel room based on the distance to the nearest mosque. 4.30am during Radaman is always a good time to be promptly awaken with the first call of the day. Oh well, didn't need to set the alarm clock for the rest of the tripRed rocks of Petra -- almost like you are on MarsThe Bedouin sell tea, rocks, old coins, and just about anything else at many stands throughout Petra
These plants just grow right out of the sand with very little waterStaircase up the trail in a more remote part of PetraMore plants that seem to do quite well despite the lack of water in the desert
The Monastery, even more impressive and in better shape than the Treasury. Just for scale, there is a person standing next to the little bush just below and right of the main entranceLooking up at the MonasteryLike other Petra buildings, the Monastery is carved right out of the rock
The port of Aquaba on the Red Sea. The left of the picture is Eygpt, the middle is Israel, and the right is JordanNice walks along the sea in AquabaGlass bottom boats are available for non-divers to see what lies below

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