A Week in Jordan: Adventure, Glamping, History, Beaches & Food
The many reasons why this fascinating country should be on your travel bucket list… and a complete guide for your trip.
Day 4 – 7: Explore and Glamp in ‘The Lost City of Petra’
Petra is, unarguably, one of the most breathtaking, adventurous and beautiful places to visit in Jordan. The entirety of this city is covered with ruins from over fifty thousand years ago. The roads are paved with cobblestones, there are ancient houses built from mud and bricks and grand amphitheaters, castles, churches, mosques and temples (Jordanians had versatile religious preferences in the past). The Lost City of Petra is a wonderful place to shop for antiques and for learning the history of Jordan first-hand.
The first thing you see when you enter is the great ancient treasury of Amman. You aren’t allowed to enter it because it contains the buried remains of various kings, along with all of their wealth. To the left is a rocky trail that leads to several grand temples that a lot of tribal Jordanians still consider holy. After the temples comes the ancient residential area of Jordanian tribes, which consists of various small houses that were made out of large hollowed stones.
To the end of the trail, there are several ruins of amphitheaters, smaller temples, large and intricately designed palaces, various shops and a museum. The museum has been built inside a hollowed stone and is designed to represent how the tribes used to spend their day in their small homes. Artifacts and fossils that have been found at the sight have also been displayed here.
Again, for Petra, it’s best to rent a car or hire a driver. However, if you happen to be coming from the Kempinski Hotel to Petra (it’s just over a 3 hour drive from either the Kempinski Hotel or Amman), then you may want to check out Kempinski’s excellent transportation facilities. They offer cars ranging from cute, little cab-like two-wheelers to stark black four wheelers. A driver is also provided by the hotel. If you’re carrying on to farther south for some glamping after your visit to Petra, then renting a SUV is what I’d recommend.
One of my favorite parts of visiting Petra was going up to one of the castles. There are around five castles in Petra, and while you can visit all of them in two days, it is much more advisable that you just see one of the castles. All the castles in Petra a almost identical, except for few differences in designs that were made due to the changing dynasties.
The castle that I visited was very close to the museum, so I could reserve all of my energy for climbing up the castle. The stairs lead to several rooms, most of which are dark and unfurnished; a sleeping chamber, the dining chamber, the in-built treasury, the slaves’ room, or the meeting hall where the King gave orders.
But the best room in the castle is definitely the one on the roof, where the Princes used to gather to learn. I love heights, so looking down from that room to see all the beautiful ancient buildings in Petra was exhilarating.
Next up: The three best places to go luxury glamping in, and near, Jordan…