Monday, April 04, 2011

Petra, Jordan

Monday April 4, 2011 12:05 PM (5:05 AM EDT)

Yesterday was another very long day. Early in the morning the Amsterdam
after sailing up the Gulf of Aqaba from the Red Sea arrived at the port
of Aqaba, Jordan. About 8:00 AM we boarded buses to head for the ancient
city of Petra. Along the way we traveled through the Jordanian desert
where we spotted numerous Bedouin camps in their large tents and their
flocks of sheep and goats. In addition to seeing the Bedouin camps we
stopped to looked at a small white building (the photo will be included
in the Flickr set) atop a mountain that purports to be the burial site
of Aaron, brother of Moses.

After about a two hour drive we arrived at the site of Petra, an ancient
Nabataean city discovered in 1812 by a Swiss researcher. The city,
hidden for centuries by high cliffs, has not been fully excavated but is
a 52 square mile city in total. Entrance to the city is through a one
kilometer ravine (after walking a half kilometer path) between huge
boulders of various colors. The first photo shows the path of the
corridor to the city buildings. Along the way are carvings on the rock
walls and numerous caves high up on the walls. As you walk out of the
corridor you are presented the huge Treasury Building, the building's
facade carved in the rock. The Treasury (al-Khazeneh) is the tomb of an
important Nabataean (I don't know his name).

Following the trek down the corridor and pass the Treasury we followed
the path back and had lunch at the hotel at the entrance. After lunch
and resting at the hotel we headed back on the bus for another two hour
drive. Along the way we did stop to do what most cruise ship excursions
do . . . shopping. What a waste of time!

No comments: