Luxury, Tailormade Holidays to Jordan
As the sun warms your shoulders and you look down at the Treasury of Petra and see the valley which carves a path towards it, you can see natural beauty and history entwine seamlessly. This is Jordan, a land of eclectic landscapes – rose-coloured rocks, fierce red sands, shimmering blue waters, lush countryside – that played host to some of the greatest civilisations in history.
Great must have been the opulence of a city, which could dedicate such monuments to the memory of its rulers – J L Buckhardt, the first European to lay eyes on Petra, 1812
These were the recorded thoughts of Buckhardt, a Swiss-born man who had disguised himself as an Arab in order to travel the Orient. He worked his way through the Holy Lands, and his journey led him towards stories of ruins in the valley. He managed to convince a guide to take him under the auspices of sacrificing a goat to Allah at the top of nearby Mount Aaron, laying his eyes on Petra at the same time.
That same sense of excitement exists today. The pathway through the Siq is lengthy and dramatic, but still cannot prepare you for the moment that you first lay eyes on the Treasury, hewn forty metres high into the rock. But if the first sight of the facades on the Petran rocks is a surprise, the beauty of Jordan ought not to be. The Jordanian Rift Valley runs through the heart of the country, causing the striking landscapes which not only make Petra possible, but also help to account for the rocky, red-sanded Wadi Rum, and the nature reserves with several eco-systems existing on top of one another. And it is not just in the scenery that Jordan stands out – from the Romans to the monuments of early Christians, to the castles of the Crusaders and those would defend against them, the history of the country is diverse and worthy of exploration.
Some of the highlights of a holiday in Jordan:
- Petra, the extensive and remarkable ruins of this Nabatean city
Dana and Feynan- a truly beautiful reserve with superb walking
- The Dead Sea, the wonderful saline waters home to inviting spa hotels
- Jerash, Jordan’s finest Roman ruins
- Wadi Rum, the desert famed by Lawrence, full of dramatic rocky scenery
- Wadi Mujib, a valley overlooking the Dead Sea
- Shawbak Castle, a decaying and enigmatic crusader castle
- The King’s Highway, the most intriguing road from the north to the south of Jordan
- The Citadel in Amman, which feasts on views over the city and its Roman Amphitheatre
- Kerak Castle, the biggest crusader castle in all of Jordan