Revisit Jordan -- discover the wild side!

Wednesday, 26 December 2012 17:16

And I'm not referring to late-night clubbing. Though I'm told there's a lot more of that than there used to be.

My argument is that however well you know Jordan, there's lots more to explore and enjoy, so come back!  We've recently heard about the growing interest in canyoning and certainly climbing is now well supported, since the wall was opened in Amman, near the Harley Davidson garage.

However our growth area is in eco-tourism!   With RSCN, we've put together a special deal -- 500 for two people for seven nights in some of the most wonderful locations in the country.


RSCN, the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, which also uses the Wild Jordan 'brand', has pioneered tourism in new locations. Ethically these are fantastic; as the tourism itself funds the eco-site that people are paying to visit. The money you spend goes to the local community and to maintaining and developing a local attraction that brings the tourists who bring the money to keep it all going!

The first example of this logic was Wadi Dana, on a dramatic hillside, swooping down from the plateau towards Wadi Araba, the southern extension of the Dead Sea Valley.  It spans four climate zones over 1,500 metres and offers tranquillity, sweeping views and an encounter with really wild Jordan.  There are workshops creating locally designed and locally made products, (eg silverware and organic foods); walking trails, and a choice of accommodation, including guest-house rooms with balconies suspended over the valley below.

The oasis at Azraq is historically significant; it's set in serious desert, has a fort known to Lawrence of Arabia, and there are wildlife reserves at Shaumari, with ostriches and Arabian oryx, and the oasis wetland with thousands of migrating birds.

Ajloun to the north has different countryside, vegetation and landscapes, with scrub oak and pistachio forests and its own fauna as well, including wild boar, jackals, hyenas, porcupines and the occasional wolf. The accommodation here is in luxury log-cabins, again with local organic breakfasts.

Our package begins with two nights at the Dead Sea (40 minutes from the airport), in a self-catering apartment with a simple breakfast and views across to Jerusalem and Jericho from the balcony.  You then have a choice.  Any or all of the RSCN locations, for as long as you want!  Or you can spend a night or two in Wadi Rum.  Mix; and match your own preferences.

Although Jordan's not big, it is quite demanding to tour all three RSCN locations and Wadi Rum and the Dead Sea, but quite realistic if you've decided to want to savour the variety that makes Jordan such a great place to visit.  On the other hand choosing just one or two locations gives you a chance to relax as well and explore in more depth.  We can help you with good value car-hire, or even a car and driver for less than you would expect.  We can also advise on times and distances and routes to take, when we know a bit more about you and what you want from a holiday.

If there's a particular theme you'd like to follow on your visit then just let us know and we can put something together specially for you.  Bird-watching, religious sites (Christian or Islamic), health and beauty, horse or camel trekking, geology and archaeology, the birth of civilisation, Roman Jordan, the Nabateans or the Hijaz Railway.

I shall be writing about all these and more in the coming months and if there's something else you would like us to research and report then please email or comment here.  Meanwhile take advantage (if you're within easy reach of Gatwick) of the good-value easyJet flights to Amman and re-visit Jordan.