It came quite as a surprise when our friends at Volagratis invited me to a blog tour organized in cooperation with the Jordanian tourism board.
Among emotion, doubts and wishes, before leaving I tried to imagine my journey and came up with a list of ‘I would like to…’. After travelling in Jordan for a week, now I am back and I will now tell you how many points I managed to check on my list.
I would like to enter Petra’s canyon with a hat and singing Indiana Jones’ tune.
Done. Then I came out from Petra wearing a keffiyeh, whistling in embarrassment. Crossing the Sik – the canyon of red rocks leading to Petra’s treasure – is an incredible experience, a walk you do with your nose looking up and the neck stretched, knowing that behind every corner is a stunning surprise.
I would like to swim in the Dead Sea and, since everyone tells to keep the eyes shut, I would like to open them and see what lies underwater (am I going to become blind?).
Half done. After I tested a drop of water I decided to skip this one and I just enjoyed the amazing feeling of floating like a dinghy. I was afraid I would be disappointed, instead it has been a fantastic experience, fun and unexpected.
I would like to do canyoning among the rocks of Wadi Mujib, and at the end I would like to spot a caracal or an Arabian leopard hunting surrounded by the sunset.
Done. Almost. We went through rapid waters, streams and waterfalls. It was 100 per cent adrenalin, lot of fun and sometimes painful. The felines, unfortunately, were too tired to show up.
I would like to fall asleep in front of a bedouin tent in the Wadi Rum desert, after I have spent hours watching the Milky Way.
Almost done. I slept in a tent, surrounded by the desert’s silence, but not before almost breaking my neck to gaze into a sky witch seemed white sometimes, that many were the stars.
I would like to eat dates in Amman, and a spicy falafel with mint yogurt.
Done. Well, honestly I ate the dates at the Dead Sea, but that’s not the point, right? The point is that the Jordan food is amazing and surprised me with unexpected flavours. My favourite plate? Chicken with pine nuts, onions and cardamom!
I would like to walk among sacred places like Jerash and Mount Nebo, and have someone to tell me a story able to throw me in the middle of ancient history.
Done. And the most fascinating place, history and legends connect in a touching atmosphere, is definitely Machaerus and its mountain, where Salome danced and John Baptist’s head rolled to the valley.
I would like to learn a few words in Arabic, drinking tea with a bunch of Jordan people.
Done. Or maybe not. I learned “thank you, hello, let’s go” thanks to our priceless guide. I did learn other word, but I forgot them. But I didn’t forget all the tea varieties people used to offer us in any occasion: mint, sage, cardamom… all of them really delicious!
Well, all in all I call myself satisfied. Thank you Jordan for your exceptional, engaging, marvelous help in checking my list!