Ever wondered what it's like to experience the incredible country of Jordan and spend a night under the stars? We asked our team member Helene for her first-hand account...
From following in the footsteps of Roman gladiators in Jerash to tracing ancient mosiacs in Madaba, slopping on 'therapeutic mud' at the Dead Sea to gazing out at the 'Promised Land' from Mount Nebo and finally, wandering in awe through the great city of Petra - it had been an inspirational, if exhuasting, few days in Jordan. Now, however, I was leaving the ruins, ancient churches and crusader castles behind me and heading deep into the mysterious desert scenery of Wadi Rum. To breathe in the incredible landscapes that inspired Lawrence of Arabia and are home to the native Bedouin people.
Wadi Rum is really quite extraordinary - mighty sandstone rock features emerging from the desert, soaring into the blue skies in a variety of mountainous shapes from high peaks to rock bridges, beautiful wind-carved canyons bearing an odd resemblance to coral reefs and the famous Seven Pillars of Wisdom (literally pillars of sandstone). Its lunar landscape is utterly mesmerising - and the perfect place to enjoy the rather wonderful experience of camping with the Bedouin.
I was lucky enough to enjoy two very different nights with our welcoming hosts. The first was spent lazing on some worn (and thus very comfortable) cushions and thick mats laid out on the floor of a yurt-like structure with a hole in the roof allowing the smoke from the central fire to escape. Endless trays of mezze (snacks) were brought along with the famous Bedouin whisky (tea) and I couldn't think of a more perfect way to end a day spent climbing somewhat precariously on one of the higher sandstone jebels (mountains).
Under the Stars
However is was the second night that really sticks in my memory. We took a jeep out into the middle of seemingly nowhere, our hosts laid out a simple rug, lit a fire and there I sat in total peace, watching the rocks turn varying shades of red...amber...gold, as the sun dipped below the horizon. This is why we travel. To catch up on the speed of life and fall asleep surrounded by a million particles of sand with a thousand stars as a night-light.
To view all of our Jordan tours, click here.