Why Travelling to Jordan is the New Black

Posted on 09 February 2019 (0)

The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan or just “Jordan,” if you wish, has seen an upsurge in tourism from foreigners in the recent years. This is a major contrast to the early days when Jordan, like other Middle Eastern countries, never featured in the tourists’ list of destinations.

Could it be that there are new discoveries in this unique Middle-Eastern nation, which attracts more visitors? Not really. Jordan is as she has always been. So why is everyone headed to Jerash, Amman, Az Zarqa, Al Karak, and Petra and so on? Read on to find out why you may soon join the bandwagon headed to Jordan.

The biblical heritage: The country is awash with the biblical sites, which everyone regardless of their religion will not resist to visit. River Jordan where John-the batist- baptized Jesus flows from the Sea of Galilee to the Dead Sea. The country also homes mount Nebo, where the biblical Moses died. Do you remember Sodom and Gomorrah- the two sinful cities of the Bible? Guess what? They are also found in Jordan.

The lowest (dry land) point on earth:  The shore of the Dead Sea-Sea of death is the lowest terrestrial point on the planet. Yes, you hear me right. Lowest point on earth! With an altitude of -420 meters below the sea level, the water is too alkaline and dense that everyone floats on the surface. So don’t worry if you can’t swim, nature has already taken you into consideration.

Petra-the Rose City: Listed among the new Seven Wonders of the World, city of Petra is a must visit for everyone. This inimitable archaeological site dates back two millennia ago, and it was only discovered in the 1800s. Petra is the only city on earth that is accessible through a gorge. So be prepared to travel through a kilometer of beautifully curved stone walls before you can access the Rose City- Home to 800 uniquely curved tombs.

Contrast with other Middle-Eastern Countries: The mention of most nations in Middle East, especially those neighboring Jordan, easily elicits thoughts of high insecurity and plenty of oil. Unlike its neighbors, Jordan is stable and has functional security systems, which guarantees safety to everyone within its borders. If you want to visit that Middle-Eastern country that lacks or doesn’t exploit its oil reserves then your guess is good as mine. You can walk from the Country’s Northern border all the way to Southern parts, via the Jordan trail, and fail to notice a single oil well.   

P.S: Jordan is a safe, stable and independent nation unknown quantities of unheralded treasures. So make plans and join others in discovering and experiences the surreal experiences offered by this lost paradise.

5 Leading Dining and Drinking Joints in Jerash

Posted on 29 January 2019 (0)

The city of Jerash is blessed with different tourist attraction sites. Some of the ancient ruins are only a few miles apart, so you will find yourself walking from one place to another. As a tourist, you need to enjoy the beautiful sceneries and the ambiance of the ancient ruins to the fullest. So work up some appetite to keep you going. The city has a number of word class eateries which serve a mix of cuisines.

Jerash Rest House: Located near the South Gate, Jerash Rest House remains the only eatery located inside the ruins. The hotel attracts a high number of visitors due to its nearness to the attraction sites. The crown should not worry you. The waiters at the hotel are accustomed to serving many people, and they do it quickly and efficiently that you won’t realize the traffic. So if you love the convenience, then the Lebanese House is your go-to place.

Lebanese House Um Khalil Restaurant: This house is an elegant favorite for both local and foreigners. Located few meters away from the CBD, the hotel serves a mix of Lebanese dishes, Mediterranean fare, and Middle Eastern cuisine. When you are done with the tour of the ruins, you can visit the Lebanese House for their delectable dishes.

Green Valley Restaurant: Located on Old Amman Road, the hotel serves exquisite Arabic dishes like Halal and Kibbeh nayyeh. While scrumptiously grilled meat is one of the main servings in the hotel, there are a variety of vegan options. So whether you are a lone tourist or in a company of others, the Green Valley will meet your nutrition needs.

The Olive Branch Restaurant: This is a mid-size hotel seated at the mountaintop overlooking the Dibbin Nature Reserve. The hotel specializes in vegetarian-friendly organic dishes. If dining you loath dining in crowded spaces then Olive Branch is your place.

Green Galon Sweets: After trekking through the streets of Jerash, you may need a slight energy boost before you continue with your adventure. The Green Galon Sweets offers a variety of freshly prepared desert, which will rejuvenate your energy. A square of knafeh or baklava at the hotel goes for a reasonable price. You can also order other syrupy Arabic delights of your choice at the hotel.

Parting shot: Most of the servings across various hotels in Jerash are Arabic. So, always ask the waiters for clarification before you order for any meal. Better still, you can walk in the company of Arabic Speakers or local tour guides. This way, you will get value for your money.

5 Must-Visit Sites When Touring Jerash City

Posted on 14 January 2019 (0)

The city of Jerash is without any doubt one of the dream destinations of many tourists. Located north of the Jordanian Capital Amman, Jerash city homes the ruins of the ancient cities, which dates back to the ancient civilization. The ruins depict the ingenious architecture and advanced engineering concepts during the Bronze Age. Jerash city offers a variety of tourism activities to both local and visiting tourists. If you wish to learn more about the Jordanian culture and ancient civilization, then the following five sites are your go-to places.

Hippodrome: This is a massive arena with a capacity of 15,000 spectators. The Arena hosts some sporting events, with the chariot races being the most common. The reenactment of the early days sporting event, gladiator battles, military drills, and chariot races take place twice a day. Therefore, passing by the Hippodrome guarantees you an opportunity on learning more about the Roman rule in Jordan.

Jerash Archeology Museum: Situated above the Southern end of the Roman Cardo, the Archeology Museum is among the tourists favorite. The museum houses a collection of jewelry samples and mosaic which have been painstakingly excavated from the city’s archeological sites. The official hours of the museum are 6:00 am to 6:30 pm, but this changes depending on seasons and religious months. So make an effort of visiting the museum to learn more about daily life in the Bronze Age.     

Forum: This oval-shaped plaza in the city center is among Jerash’s undisputed highlights. This amazing 90m long and 80m wide space links the Cardo Maximus with the Zeus Temple. The shadows of the 56 iconic limestone columns create a vortex of shades with a spectacular view. To enjoy the beauty of the Forum, you can always climb on top of the Zeus Temple.    

Temple of Artemis: Standing tall beyond the Corinthian Pillars, the Temple of Artemis gives a suggestive perspective of the Roman Ruins. The ruins depict the influence of the Romans in the area. You can learn and interact with locals or visitors from different backgrounds. You can take photos in different scenic sites within the temple.

Nymphaeum: Sitting on the Western side of the Roman Cardo, the two-story structure remains one of the most loved Roman ruins in the city. The ancient Roman architects meticulously curved this ornamental fountain to display seven lion heads. While water no longer cascades through the lion heads, the Nymphaeum still provides a refreshing focal point of the city.   

Bottom line: While the beauty of the iconic attraction sites cannot be overstated, the city can experience extreme weather conditions, very hot in summer and too cold in winter. So plan your trips to counter such challenges. Also, there are several vendors at the entrance of the temple who sells unique souvenirs, so be sure to buy a piece or two for the memory of the unique site.

Tips for a budget trip to Jordan

Posted on 10 December 2018 (0)

Jordan is a small, stable and safe country, compared to some of her Middle Eastern neighbors. You can visit even as a lone traveler without fear. There are lots to see, from the ruins of ancient cities to the vast deserts.

But though small, Jordan is not a cheap place to visit. So do not rush to tick it in your list of countries you intend to go and seek adventure; not so fast. You need first to consider that its currency is stronger than the USD. One Jordan dinar is equivalent to $1.40. That is a concern, especially for a broke traveler planning a tight budget trip. You need to plan, un-plan and re-plan to get your math right. These tips will help you do your math to come up with a tight but comfortable budget that can afford you a fulfilling adventure in this country.

Buy the Jordan Pass online

If you get your visa on arrival, you will have to part with $60, regardless of which country you come from. But if you buy and process the Jordan Pass online before you arrive, you pay nothing for the visa. Once you arrive at the immigration counter, you just produce a print out of the Jordan Pass alongside your passport and you are given the green light to enter the country. With the pass, you can visit nearly all the historical sites in Jordan. The pass is $105, but if you consider that some of these historical sites charge $70 and you are likely to visit more than six of them, a Jordan Pass is a significant saving.

Budget Flight

Fly Dubai is the cheapest airline so if you are on a tight budget, give it a tick as you plan your trip. However, you will also have to get a visa to the United Arabs Emirates to use it. If you already have the UAE visa, you are lucky. Etihad Airways is also affordable if you are traveling from India.

Transport inside Jordan

The public transportation is the cheapest. Unfortunately, it offers poor services. You may have to rent a car. Many car operators in Jordan charge highly, especially the big-name operators, but you can get an affordable car rental from local companies like Monte Carlo. The good news is that you are in the Middle East, the heart of oil, so once you have rented a car, you will only pay a small amount for fuel. You can drive 1000 KM with mere $46 worth of fuel.

Meals

Street-eating is the way to go if you are visiting Jordan on a budget. Instead of a major feast in a restaurant, you can move from one street eatery to another, trying varies delicacies. If you are visiting certain sites, you will have to buy your water away from the location because they overcharge at the site.

In some restaurants, you can even negotiate the price, especially if you an Indian.

Accommodation

There are clean, comfortable and friendly hotels that charge fair prices, although the rooms are small and the bathroom is shared.

Parting shots

Because of the terrorist activities within the Middle East, sometimes tourism is negatively affected, and the prices do come down. At some times, you could take the risk and fly to Jordan on the tightest budget. You will even be able to enjoy the comfort of normally expensive hotels at a low price.