THE JORDAN OF A THOUSAND AND ONE CIVILIZATIONS
Day 01, France – Amman
Arrival at Queen Alia Airport (Amman Airport), welcome and assistance by our Stars Sky Travel representative for passport and visa formalities, then transfer to your hotel for dinner and overnight.
Day 2, Amman- Desert Castles
Magnificent examples of early Islamic architecture and art, Jordan's Desert Castles bear witness to a fascinating era inscribed in the country's rich history. The refinement of their mosaics, their frescoes, their illustrations and their engravings on stone and stucco, in the pure Persian and Greco-Roman tradition, gives us a glimpse of the way of life in the 8th century.
Lunch at Al Azraq.
Return to Amman to enjoy the capital of the Hashemite Kingdom. From the top of the citadel, we can't miss the superb view of the lower town. We visit the Temple of Hercules, the Umayyad Palace and the Archaeological Museum. Then, we take a short tour of the Lower Town, which has preserved a beautiful Greco-Roman amphitheater.
Return to the hotel. Dinner and overnight in Amman.
Day 3, Jerash – Umm Qais
Today, we leave for the North of Jordan to discover its Greco-Roman cities. We start our day with the site of Jerash. The city had its golden age during the Roman reign, when it was known as Gerasa. Today, this site is considered one of the best preserved Roman provincial towns in the world. Hidden under sand for centuries before being uncovered and restored for 70 years, Jerash is the epitome of extensive and formal Roman municipal planning throughout the Middle East. It is adorned with cobbled, colonnaded streets, immense temples on the crest of the hills, delightful theatres, spacious public squares, baths, fountains and walls pierced by towers and railings. After 2 hours of visit, we leave for lunch in one of the restaurants of Jerash. Then we take the road to Umm Qais formerly Gadara.
Site of the famous “miracle of the pig”, Gadara was famous at the time as a cultural center. Several poets and philosophers have lived there, notably Theodore, founder of the school of rhetoric in Rome. A poet even called this city “the new Athens”. Perched on the crest of a splendid hill overlooking the Jordan Valley and the Sea of Galilee, Gadara is known today as Umm Qais. It is renowned for its immense vaulted terrace and its colonnaded streets as well as for the ruins of two theatres.
Return to the hotel. Dinner and overnight in Amman.
Day 4, Kings Route – Madaba – Nebo – Kerak – Petra
Depart for Petra via part of the Kings Highway linking Aqaba to Amman. Stop at Madaba, a biblical site grouping 14 Byzantine churches. Visit of Saint-Georges Church, famous for its 6th century mosaic depicting the oldest map of Palestine and Jerusalem. Continuation to Mount Nebo to appreciate the panorama of the Jordan Valley and the memorial of Moses, with its Byzantine frescoes. Road to Kerak, a large fortress built by the Crusaders in the 12th century.
Overnight at hotel in Petra.
Jour 5, Petra
After breakfast, we go to Petra, the Pink City. You enter the city through 1 km of narrow gorge lined with 80 m high cliffs! You observe the dazzling colors and formations of the rocks, then continue to the magnificent Treasury (Al-Khazneh) carved into the sandstone rock. You continue to explore this incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site is huge and contains hundreds of rock-cut tombs, a Roman amphitheater, temples, a sacrificial altar and a colonnaded street. Lunch will be served at the local restaurant inside the site. We spend the afternoon on the site then at the end of the day we return to the hotel. Dinner and overnight Petra.
Day 6, Petra – Wadi-Rum – Dead Sea
Breakfast and departure to Little Petra then road to the Wadi Rum desert. If Petra is the result of the work of man combined with that of nature, the cliffs, peaks and valleys of Wadi Rum owe their "serene beauty" and their "overwhelming grandeur" to themselves alone, according to the words of T. E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia.
Lunch in a Bedouin camp.
Then, we leave to discover this majestic desert during a 2 hour 4X4 tour. We then take the path to the Dead Sea through the Wadi-Araba desert which marks the border between Jordan and Israel. During our crossing of this desert, we will have the opportunity to admire the sunset.
Then, we will discover the gorge of Wadi Al-Mujib before reaching our hotel by the sea.
Dinner and overnight at the Dead Sea.
Day 7, Dead Sea – Iraq-AL-Amir
We spend the morning enjoying the Dead Sea relaxing, floating in the salty waters or resting by the pool. If you wish, you can also benefit from “spa” treatments. After lunch, we leave for Iraq-Al-Amir. Iraq-Al-Amir depends on the municipality of Amman, in the Jordan Valley. Located 15km southwest of the town of Wadi Al-Seer, Al-Amir has about 6,000 inhabitants. Built on hills, the city has many springs, and is known for its olive trees and forests. Less than a kilometer south of the city is the historic site of Al-Iraq-Amir, built by a Persian prince in the 3rd century BC. The hills are home to many caves, which date back to the Copper Age.
Since 1992, an exhibition center has highlighted the region's modern discoveries: precious crafts; pottery; glasses; weapons from the Bronze Age, the Nabataean period and the Roman period; registrations; Islamic gold coins and silver loot recently discovered in Iraq Al-Amir. After the visit, we have dinner at the restaurant of the Association of Women Craftsmen of Iraq-Al-Amir.
Day 08, Amman – France
Breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the airport and assistance with departure formalities for France.