Petra – The Rose City

After several flights and busy airports, we arrived in Jordan, excitement was in the air, and our adventure awaited us. After a quick introduction to our guide, we board our bus for three hours to our first stop of, many in the next ten days. In the darkness, we entered the Valley of Moses; the lights of the town glowed up and down the mountainside allowing a visual effect of the steep vastness of the area. Finally, exhausted from our travels to Jordan, we all were ready for dinner and bed. The food was amazing and delighted our taste buds. Our rooms were comfy and gave us the restful sleep needed for the following busy day, where history, donkeys, and jeeps awaited us!

Life is good, and I am blessed. First, my current situation – I’m sitting in a comfy chair on the patio of my luxury tent in the middle of the Wadi Rum desert, reflecting on the day. The air is cool, and the soft sounds of the night sing in gratitude to the glorious heaven above! Fluffy white clouds and sparkling stars mingle with the deep blue sky, and the only thought on my mind is God is Good. Thank You, Lord!

My luxury tent

This day I walked in the valley of Moses, viewed from afar Mt. Hor, the site of Aaron’s tomb. In addition, I made a not-so-gallant effort to walk 822 steps to view the all-Deir Monastery and walk through the ancient city of Petra. I would say that makes for a pretty GREAT DAY!

The Treasury

The lost city of Petra was rediscovered in the early 1800; located in Jordan, the site is both a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the new seven wonders of the World. The area holds Nabataean, Roman, and Byzantine architectural ruins, is a religious pilgrimage site, and a Crusader Citadel can also be found there.

In the Bible, the area around Petra is called Edom, the land believed to have been settled by descendants of Esau, the elder twin brother of Jacob.

Here the Israelites wandered in the desert in search of the promised land. Mt Hor, also known as Mt Aaron, was in the land of Edom. Mount Hor is where God told Moses and Aaron they would not see the promised land.

Numbers 20:24 ”Aaron shall be gathered to his people; for he shall not enter into the land which I have given to the children of Israel, because you rebelled against my word at the waters of Meribah”

It is said this is the area Moses made the water flow when striking a rock from his staff. A local legend claims the narrow Siq, which leads into Petra, was formed by the torrent of water released after Moses struck the rock. It is believed the area was settled around 9000 B.C. The Siq is roughly 1.5 winding miles which meant protection from the Nabatawan enemies and a perfect spot to develop their capital around the 4th century B.C.

Petra is a giant metropolis of tombs and monuments carved into sandstone cliffs. The most well-persevered structure is known as Al Khazneh, the Treasury. Legends tell of a cache of treasure left by the inhabitants long ago. The Treasury is a massive 12-story facade building. Further down the road curving to the left and right are the 822 steps one must conquer to enjoy a magnificent view of the desert. Five of our group reached the goal and told of the beauty. For me, I gave up at 30ish steps as my heart rate was already fast and furious! I was not the only one who passed on the climb. As we waited at mid-point, a cute brown puppy headed up the stairs giving up and leading back down even sooner than me.

A fun note a few movies filmed in Petra includes Aladdin (2019), Indiana Jones, Last Crusade The Mummy Returns, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, Queen of the Desert, and Jinn.

Our Petra adventure ended with a tasty glass of fresh-squeezed pomegranate juice and a horse ride that ended close to our bus. Left behind were the echoing howls of donkeys, playing dodge with the carts taking visitors through the Siq and the soft mushy green rocks gifted by donkeys

Our group rested on the bus as we traveled several hours to the greatly anticipated Jeep ride through the Wadi Rum and our overnight in luxury tents.

Super comfy bed

Tent bathroom – very nice!

The outside area of my tent

The Wadi Rum is a protected desert area located in Jordan. The beautiful mountains of sandstone and granite are colored red due to oxide. The area is stunning, and it feels as though you have landed on the red planet Mars. The cloud-covered skies were perfect for zipping through the desert but sadly ended our dusk Mars-inspired photo op. Luckily, we did get an early morning photo op in our NASA shirts!.

Walking on Mars!

Fun fact, movies filmed in Wadi Rum Lawrence of Arabia 1962, Prometheus, and Red Planet.

God is good. Thank You for the beauty you have provided through nature.

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