Wadi Rum -The Red Desert , Jordan

It is a special region in this world – some call it the Holy Land – a region that is truly historical in terms of mankind – I am talking about todays lands of Israel , Jordan as well as Egypt and in the north – the Iran, Iraque and Syria .This whole region is a kind of fundament of mankind s culture .

Moreover it is the region where the prophets of the 3 main religions ie Judaism,Christianity and the Islam were spending their lifetime . Thousands of years ago Moses, Jesus and Mohammed were living in these lands – visually you have the feeling that the surrounding did not change too much since then . It means when you are travelling over there it is like a trip within time .

We are coming from Israel , having visited Jerusalem , Masada and the Dead Sea and continuing our trip to Jordan . We pass by the Israel – Jordan borderline at Aquaba at the Dead Sea.

It is in March 2017 and the weather is really fine .We have had a wonderful week in Israel visiting some of the historical places and pass by to Jordan , mainly to see Petra and Wadi Rum .

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We leave Aquaba – Wadi Rum is about 60-70 km from here but we need about 2 hours to drive .

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We are excited as we heard so much about Wadi Rum and are very happy to spend this night over there .

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On the road we are climbing up as Wadi Rum is at a level of about 1750 m height and we start seeing the stone formations of the desert which cover an area of 720 km2  – nature is always so gorgeous – geographically these formations are one of the oldest on Earth – millions of years– granite stones and sand stones which arranged the formation of this worldfamous desert .

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Wadi Rum – also called the Moon Valley  – has a beautiful very specific red color due to the high grade of Iron Oxide .

Finally we arrive at the entrance of the Wadi Rum Visitor Centre to do our check in .

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It is late in the afternoon and we are hungry as well as looking forward to see our great accomodation.

We pass by the entrance and are now within the protected area of Wadi Rum .

I think it is difficult to describe – it is so beautiful with the granite rocks in the background , the red very fine sand , the light of the sun and the blue of the sky and the white clouds .

It is another world here ….amazing .

We arrive at our hotel which is a range of traditional Bedouin type of tents but you also have the choice to stay in the Martian domes .

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It is already late – we just settle in our rooms  and prepare for dinner .The air starts to be cold in the desert . 

Meanwhile in front of a huge granite rock our dinner – our Zarb – a great Bedouin Barbecue – is prepared .

In the desert the bedouins were  cooking their meal underground and this is the way how our dinner is also arranged .

Actually a hole is digged into the sandy ground  and the metal oven is laid into this ground . Sand is covered around the whole oven until just the upper part stands out .

Then the fire is arranged with some wood and then with some coal .

The oven has 3 layers and in the inner part the meat eg veal or chicken meat is laid while in the upper part the vegetables such as potatoes , carrots , tomatoes and eggplants.are placed.

Today the meat is covered with foil while in the former times the bedouins folks were covering the meat for cooking with palm tree leaves .

Afterwards the lid of the oven is closed and a blanket is put on the oven – then the blanket is also covered with sand .With this method the oven stays hot underearth and it takes about 2-3 hours until the meal is ready .

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Meanwhile it is late in the evening , the sun has gone down but though it is in the night the stars and the moon are spending us some good light .

It is great as the cooks are just opening the sand blocks and taking out the ovens , hot with the meal and starting to serve the meal together with some rice , salads and some yoghurt – it is all superdelicious and to have the meal under this wonderful royalblue sky is a unique experience .

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The air is fresh , some camels are standing in front of the granite rock and roaring .

It is a nice atmosphere .

We enjoy our great meal , get some delicious tea and have some great chat about our travellings with friends and late in the night we walk down to our bedouine tents to rest – totally tired .

The next day will be full of fun as we will drive with 4×4 jeeps through the desert .

After having had a good sleep we wake up in the morning .

What a view – in the morning the colors of the desert look different , a little more pale while the higher the sun the brighter the colors .

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We take our breakfast in front of our big tent just in front of our granite rock – our 4×4  cars are already waiting for us .

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We are sitting in the car and our drive starts with some local music in the background .

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We pass by breathtaking sceneries – the red sand and the rock formations look beautiful .

Here and there we also meet some kind of caravans with local people with their camels .

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The camels sitting there on the sand with their colorful dressings  and saddles are looking so picturesque .

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For a few hours we are driving through the formations enjoying the views .The sand is rising while we are driving – so we are really lucky to be inside the car although it is a also very joyful to sit outside .

We are passing by very old routes that were used by different civilizizations especially the bedouine tribes .The traces in the desert date back to 12.000 years where people already lived here .

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Today there are 7 different nomad tribes who are living in the region – like the Zalabia,Zweideh,Sweilhieen ,Omran,Godman and Dbour tribes . They were struggling with the nature since hundereds of years to survive as there is nearly no flora in the desert. Daytime you also dont see any animals besides the camels as the animals escape from the sunshine and heat and just are active in the night .

During our drive we also came across the Barh Sique where there is a rock carving of the head of T.E.Lawrence better known as Lawrence of Arabia  who played a key role at the British in the beginning of the 20th century during the revolte of the Arabs against the Ottoman Empire . He became a symbol of Wadi Rum and a movie about him and Wadi Rum was made over here .

Actually this is not the only movie made in this region – Wadi Rum was a prefered platform for film shootings.

Red Planet , the Martian and the last days on Mars just to name a few who were especially used to use the valley as a platform to make movies about the planet Mars due to its geological appearance .

This is also why Wadi Rum is also called Moon Valley since it reminds people of the universe with its unique surface formations.

We finalize the day with great impressions of the valley which is since 2011 a Unesco World Heritage due to its nature but also due to 25.000 carvings and 20.000 inscriptions into the rocks which is tracing back human activities for thousands of years in this area .

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Our next stop in Jordan is Petra  which is definitely another highlight of this country .

I do hope that I will have the chance to come back one day to Wadi Rum to intensively enjoy the nature once again .

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