Travel ambassador, broadcaster and presenter Penny Smith, has missed travelling so much that she was very excited to once again be packing her suitcase and joining us in Jordan for Travelsphere’s Jordan’s Ancient Wonders holiday.
It was flipping brilliant to be travelling again. And incredible to arrive in Jordan for our amazing Travelsphere holiday. Exploring Petra - one of the wonders of the world - seeing the Roman ruins in Amman, staying the night in Wadi Rum and floating in the Dead Sea was the perfect way to get back to re-discovering the world. What made it even better was sharing the experiences and the laughs with my fellow travelling companions.
It’s not necessarily the first place you think of when pondering where you might like to go for a holiday. But may I humbly place Jordan gently on your lap and retire for a fragrant cardamom coffee?
The awe-inspiring sights of Jordan
It’s not a massive country - if you were to look at it on a map, you’d be put in mind of a fat angel with one wing, it’s belly button on the Dead Sea . And it is jam packed with treasures - from the extraordinary Roman ruins at Jerash, one of the largest and most well-preserved outside of Italy - to the staggeringly beautiful red rose city of Petra, famous from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, with its architecture carved into the pink rocks. Then there’s the Valley of the Moon - another UNESCO heritage site in the south of the country - known as Wadi Rum, inhabited since prehistoric times and best known to us for its connection to Lawrence of Arabia. Anyone with an interest in the Bible will know many of the famous spots you can visit, such as the place where Jesus was baptised and Mount Nebo, Moses’ last stop on the Exodus from Egypt.
Aside from the numerous sights (have I mentioned that you can trot all over a crusader castle for example), you can cover yourself from head to foot in the black, mineral rich mud on the banks of the Dead Sea and then bob in the water like a carefree conker until you emerge silky smooth to dry off in the sunshine?
It’s a feast for the senses in every way because you will never eat a better baba ghanoush, a tastier hummus just bursting with juicy chickpeas or drink a more delicious pomegranate juice than you will in Jordan.
As for the cardamom coffee - you have to think of it as a mildly chewy hot drink. Maybe it’s an acquired taste but I’m already pining for my next hit.
I have come home with fabulous memories, great photographs and quite a bit of sand in my shoes.
Penny has also travelled with us to India, Italy and Croatia…read about some of her other adventures here….