Welcome to this week’s Postcard From – the feature where I chat to some lucky explorer about their recent travels.
This week, I’ve been chatting to fellow travel-blogger Lucy about her trip to Jordan. Lucy is a UK-based freelance editor and designer who’s travelled to 34 countries so far and always has to have a trip or two lined up to look forward to. She blogs at On the Luce to give advice and inspiration to other independent travellers who might not be in the position to travel long term but want to make the most of the travel time they have available while they combine a passion for travel with work, love and everyday life.
Welcome, Lucy! You’re a pretty active traveller: where have you been now?
So you escaped the British winter for a few days! How was the weather?
We travelled in November which was about perfect weather wise – still sunny and warm but cool enough that we didn’t totally roast clambering around the temples at Petra. There’s hardly any shade there, so it must get incredibly hot in summer.
There’s tons of stuff I’d love to do in Jordan – what did you get up to?
From Amman we drove down the King’s Highway to Petra. There’s a modern highway that takes you there in half the time but this was much more interesting, past old crusader castles and Jordan’s version of the Grand Canyon – Wadi Mujb. Then we had two days exploring the temples of Petra and finished off with a couple of nights relaxing by the Dead Sea.
We stayed in a mixture of places, from a budget guesthouse on the hills overlooking Petra with an amazing roof terrace view, to a five-star luxury resort on the Dead Sea. Not my normal type of hotel for sure, but there’s nowhere to stay on a budget by the Dead Sea so we splashed out for a couple of days.
Do you have a highlight?
It has to be Petra. Even though I’ve seen it in so many photos and films, the first glimpse of the Treasury through the Siq was stunning. Though some of the other temples like the Monastery – which you have to climb 800 steps to get up to – were almost as impressive and a lot quieter. We also did the Petra by Night tour when the path to the Treasury is lit up with 1800 candles which was beautiful.
So, what’s the food like in Jordan?
The food was really good, very similar to Lebanese food. I usually ended up having lots of mezze dishes like hummus, falafel and tabouleh salads. I don’t eat a lot of meat and it was an easy place to find vegetarian food. It’s not a place to do a lot of drinking though – as it’s a Muslim country alcohol is only available in Western-owned hotels and it’s heavily taxed. We did have a beer in our Dead Sea hotel but at £10 for a litre it was just the one!
Did you have any disasters?
We had a bit of a planning fail when we assumed we could pick up a GPS with our hire car at the airport. Turned out that they didn’t have any, nor did any other car hire places and we even thought of buying one but they were out of stock everywhere. Neither of us has any sense of direction and Amman is a complete maze so we ended up getting a taxi driver to lead us out of the city onto the King’s Highway, and from there we just about managed not to get too lost.
So I’ll be taking my own GPS if I go! Do you have any tips for anyone headed out to Jordan?
I’d advise people to spend at least a couple of days at Petra. The ticket price isn’t much different (JD50 for one day as opposed to JD55 and 60 for two or three days) and you can take your time and see some of the quieter temples. The site is huge and you end up doing a lot of walking so we split it up so we didn’t end up too exhausted or get temple fatigue.
NB – all images are owned by Lucy Dodsworth.