WHY YOU SHOULD GOExplore Wadi Rum’s moon-like rock and get beneath the skin of the ancient city of Petra. Look forward to learning the art of Jordanian cooking with local experts, where you can create mouth-watering dishes. Have the privilege of meeting and learning from the desert's fully nomadic Berbers and spend the nights star-gazing from your camp at Al Hillawi, in miles of open desert.
We think if you’re jetting off to experience an architectural wonder of the ancient world, you should really experience it. Bumping into the luminous city of Petra in a steamy minibus and being herded round the sights just doesn’t cut it. On this seven night trip you’ll soak in the glory of the ancient world as well as getting a taste for the flavours of Jordan on an exclusive cooking class. So sit back and let us tell you how we’d put a bit more wonder into your ancient experience.
The seven hills of Amman
Here, there are colourful souks, elegant mosques and the famous citadel, where you can have a peek at the temple of Hercules. In nearby Jeresh explore the ancient amphitheatres, baths and colonnades which make this one of the world’s best preserved Roman cities.
Cooking up a storm
For a final Amman experience that will stoke your culinary fires for a lifetime you’ll be treated to an exclusive cooking class to learn the ins and outs of Jordanian cuisine. With each dish made for sharing, dining here is a very sociable affair so expect heaps of hospitality and lots of lip-smacking treats.
Set on a terrace overlooking the Amman citadel, you can learn exactly how to bring your holiday home with you. Get stuck in to traditional dishes at breakfast, lunch or dinner classes, including favourites like Hummus and Muhamara, a hot pepper dip, Moutabal, a roasted, pureed potato or eggplant dish, and Kibbeh Maaliyeh, a minced meat dish. With the opportunity to add on either a fortune telling, a market visit to buy all the produce you need, or a guided village tour, you’ll learn everything you need to know about Jordanian culture.
Soak up the luxury
There’s enough to see in Jordan to keep you driving around the desert all week, but that would never do. There’ll be five star hotels waiting for you at the end of every day where you can empty the sand out of your pockets, take a swim or just relax with a gourmet supper. And for a little bit of authenticity we’d recommend a night in the traditional Al Hillawi camp, where you can relax under the stars like a real Bedouin…albeit a very spoilt one. It’s also a rare chance to meet some olf the last remaining fully nomadic Berbers in the area. They will be all too happy to invite you into their camp to share storys of desert perserverance over a cup of steaming hot sweet tea. This is truly an experience that will not be around forever; the draw of modern life is slowly ensuring that numbers of Bedouin are falling and traditions are slowly being lost in time
Indiana Jones adventures
Al Hillawi, explore the sandstone valley of Wadi Rum, and from there the journey continues off to Little Petra. Once part of an ancient caravan route, this site is crammed with tombs, temples, triclinia houses and frescoed plasterwork: a great introduction to its more famous sister.
The magic of Petra
Your next port of call is the craggy landscapes of Shobak Castle, from where you’ll find the final destination: Petra. Hidden behind an almost impenetrable barrier of rocky mountains, this majestic, rose-coloured city has enthralled visitors for centuries. Wander around the incredible carved stone architecture to your heart’s content and get acquainted with the immense Al Deir monastery and the stunning Al Khazneh (the treasury).
The Dead Sea
Take a well-deserved mini pilgrimage to the Dead Sea for a spot of flotation and some wind-down pampering at the superb Kempinski Hotel Ishtar. You’ll return home brimming with memories of desert landscapes and armed with tales of temples and towering castles for your friends. Who knows, maybe you’ll inspire a little wonder in them.