Day 1 - Amman
Ahlan Wa Sahlan! Welcome to Jordan, cosmopolitan and contemporary, yet steeped in biblical history. Your adventure begins with a Welcome Meeting at 6 pm on Day 1. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please have these on hand. As there's not much time spent in Amman on this itinerary, it's worth arriving a day or two early to explore the sights. Highlights include the citadel, the Jordan Museum and the Roman Theatre. At any rate, perhaps try an ara’yes while you're here – a toastie filled with spicy mincemeat.
Notes: If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time for the welcome meeting, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception.
Day 2 - Dead Sea
After breakfast, head out for the first part of your trek. Journey to Mukawir, aka ancient Machaerus. Here you will find the citadel of Herod the Great, and the place of the execution of John the Baptist. The shepherd's trail weaves around the hills and a stunning panoramic view presents itself. From here you can see the countryside, the Dead Sea, and the West Bank – even Jerusalem and Jericho on a clear day. Far removed from the tourist circuit, the quiet of this area transports you back to Biblical times, as shepherds and their flocks still find shelter in the myriad caves and grottoes in the area. If you’re lucky you might get a chance to have a chat with them. As your morning trek concludes, hike down to the Dead Sea for a refreshing dip (and effortless float).
Notes: Today's trek takes approximately 4 hours. The trail is quite steep at times, with loose rocks, so you may wish to bring some trekking poles with you if you'd like some extra support.
Day 3 - Petra
This morning we will make our way to Petra (approximately 3 hours). This jewel of Jordan is justifiably on the 'must see' list for many travellers. The lost city of the biblical Nabateans comprises an impressive series of tombs and dwellings hidden behind ornate facades carved directly into rock. After checking into your hotel, head to the entrance of the Siq with your leader. Begin the mile-long walk down the narrow path with towers of rock on either side. At the end of path, get your first glimpse of the iconic Treasury, where you can imagine the armies and traders who made their way down here in ancient times. When it's all over, return to your Petra hotel to rest up before a big day of trekking tomorrow.
Day 4 - Petra
This morning after breakfast we make our way to the site of Little Petra (which is the starting point of the hike on the back-trail that brings you back to Petra). On arrival you will meet with a local guide who will accompany you. The landscape today is ever changing – sandy plateaus, bedouin campsites, goat herds and stone staircases. Your guided tour culminates at The Monastery, a impressive seven-storey structure with a doorway that's eight metres high. Though less ornate than the Treasury, the sheer scale of this building makes it an amazing sight. Reportedly it was used as a temple by Christians in the Byzantine period. From here you have the option to head down into the Petra Basin and make your own explorations of the site of Petra at your own pace. Your leader will also suggest essential sites that are great to visit (as well as how to get back to your hotel).
Day 5 - Wadi Rum
With free time this morning, perhaps return to Petra or simply rest your legs at the hotel. Later we journey to Wadi Rum, our base for the next two nights. On arrival, start with a guided tour by 4x4 vehicle with your camp host. You'll see the amazing sights and landscapes of Wadi Rum, such as the famous Seven Pillars of Wisdom (famed after the book by T.E. Lawrence), sand dunes, and rock bridges. Take it all in as you watch the sunset on the beautiful lunar-like landscape. Tonight you’ll stay in a simple desert camp, with the choice of sleeping in a tent or out under the stars. Enjoy a delicious dinner cooked in an earthen oven by your Bedouin hosts. Conditions are basic at the desert camp, but the hospitality of these people is legendary, and the experience of sleeping beneath this desert sky is a memorable one.
Notes: A mattress and blankets are provided tonight. While the desert may be very hot during the day, it will still be cool at night, so warm clothes and a sleeping bag are highly recommended if you're travelling outside of the summer months. Western-style toilet facilities are available.
Day 6 - Wadi Rum
After waking up in the unique surrounds of the Bedouin camp, enjoy a trek around the area, covering around 12 kilometres. There will be stops for tea and lunch. Along the way, you might like to scale one of the large sand dunes for sensational views of the surrounding area. The photo opportunities are incredible as great gouts of rock jut out from a carpet of bright red sand. Erosion over the ages has created fantastic gnarled shapes in the landscape. Explore the distinctive rock formations and soak in the vast silence of the desert. Later, return to camp for another night in the desert camp with your new Bedouin friends.
Notes: You'll need strong and sturdy footwear for today's trek.
Day 7 - Madaba
Rise early to catch the first sunrays over Wadi Rum. After breakfast, set out on a short canyon trek of around 6 kilometres before driving back to the entrance of Wadi Rum. We then travel to the small town of Madaba. This town is famous for its Ottoman-style houses and beautiful Byzantine-era mosaics, including the famous 6th-century mosaic map of Jerusalem and the Holy Land at St George's Church. Other mosaic masterpieces found within churches and the Archaeological Museum depict a rampant profusion of flora and fauna, as well as scenes from mythology and daily life. Hundreds of other mosaics from the 5th to the 7th century are scattered throughout Madaba’s churches and homes. After a big week of exploring, arrive in Madaba for your final night. Maybe gather your travel buddies for a celebratory shisha as this adventure comes to an end.
Day 8 - Madaba
This trip comes to an end today. There are no activities planned and you are free to depart the accommodation at any time.
Accommodation, Food (as stated), Transport, Selected Activities
Flights, Travel Insurance, Visa, Vaccinations or Personal Spending Money