Only a year and half late, our little movie from our summer 2016 trip to Jordan, Israel, and Turkey.
What took us so long? Life. But no worries: things are great and we’re still traveling away!
Never fear- more trips are planned and more blog posts are to be written. I loved the Middle East so much, I might just realize my dream of going back soon. Very soon. Of course that joy is still only second to going to Hollywood, attending a taping of The Price is Right, and winning both showcases. A girl can dream, can’t she?
Until then, we save our pennies: cutting down on eating mostly vegetarian, cancelling my gym membership, making my own clothes.
We woke up the following day with two missions: to visit Masada and to swim in the Dead Sea.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to spend the money on a rental car or a private driver to go see Masada and the Dead Sea. Continue reading
When I was booking our AirBNB in Jerusalem, I was intrigued by several features of the place we ended up booking: hip (and convenient) neighborhood, full kitchen, balcony overlooking the activity on the street, good reviews, good price. As we neared our check-in date, I again reviewed our reservations and started to see reviews that warned of the loud bars that had recently opened downstairs. “How bad could it be?” I said.
Apparently, it could be pretty bad. Continue reading
After a relaxing stay in Aqaba, we crossed over into Israel through the Aqaba-Eilat border crossing. In order to get there from Aqaba, you need to take a cab to the border. Your cab driver will quote you 8-10 JD, but you can bargain for 4-5 (which we did – on that note, when you take a cab in Jordan, always haggle). Continue reading
After spending two glorious and exhausting days in Petra, we left the comfort of the Al Rashid hotel ($24 per night, including breakfast for two!) to move on to some real R&R. (The Al Rashid is actually the #1 hotel in Wadi Musa, despite its budget price – I wouldn’t say it’s luxurious by any means, but it’s comfortable and has air conditioning. It also inspired several rounds of jokes between Jolyn and me, such as, “I splurged on the Al Rashid for you, honey” and “Romance at the Al Rashid!”)
After the Treasury, the second most famous structure in Petra is the Monastery. The Monastery, or al-Deir in Arabic, is inaccurately named – it was likely a temple. The Monastery is about an hour and a half’s hike from the Treasury, and consists of roughly 800 steps. The best time to go is in the afternoon, as the steps are largely shaded at that point, while the facade of the Monastery is fully lit up by the sun. You will have many offers for donkey rides, so if the 800-step ascent seems too daunting, hop on a four-legged taxi.
When we were thinking about where to go this summer, the overwhelming urge to go to the Middle East was spurred on by our desire to visit Petra. We had seen it on shows such as An Idiot Abroad and Departures, and that only fueled our interest. Despite some less-than-glowing reactions from friends and family who were nervous for our personal safety, we had made up our mind – we were going to Jordan and the Middle East. (I’ll explain just how safe the Middle East can be – depending on your destination – in another post.)