Travel with expert lecturer and archaeologist Dr Konstantine Politis, who discovered and excavated the biblical sites of Lot’s Cave and Zoara. He also initiated and set up the Museum at the Lowest Place on Earth. Jordan is one of history’s crossroads and battlegrounds, and this tour encompasses the entire range of its heritage and culture.
Set on the northern shores of the Dead Sea at the lowest point on Earth, the Movenpick Resort and Spa is approximately 40 minutes from the Queen Alia International Airport. Built in the style of a traditional stone village, the resort features a combination of natural traditional local stone, handcrafted wood, luxurious fabrics and an impressive collection of antiques and artwork. Complete with a river and extensive gardens, it is a tranquil place to relax. Despite the traditional look of the village, all 358 rooms are luxuriously furnished in warm, neutral colours. There are approximately 10 different room categories in either the main building, in the village or on the beachfront with mountain, garden or sea views. All rooms have a balcony or a terrace and standard amenities include air-conditioning, satellite TV, telephone, tea/coffee making facilities, mini bar and a safe. I...
Located only a few minutes' walk from the entrance to the legendary site of Petra, the Movenpick Resort features intricate interior design and high standards of service and is one of Petra's most distinguished hotels. The resort's 183 lavishly spacious rooms are tastefully decorated and feature a host of modern amenities including air-conditioning/heating, satellite TV, telephones, tea/coffee making facilities and minibar. All offer a tranquil environment in this ancient city. With seven different dining or entertainment venues there is plenty of choice. The award-winning Al Iwan Restaurant is renowned for its lavishly prepared dinners and Mediterranean culinary delights and for a casual dining atmosphere head to the Al Saraya Restaurant, which offers sumptuous cuisine with a view overlooking the serene pool. Spend your afternoon enjoying your favourite drink at Al Maqa'ad Bar...
The Boulevard Arjaan by Rotana is conveniently located in the new downtown area of Amman, with the Temple of Hercules and the Roman Corinthian columns just a few kilometres away. The property offers a range of luxurious accommodation from studio apartments to four-bedroom penthouses. The hotel has a contemporary Italian restaurant with an outdoor terrace.
Features: 391 apartments, 2 restaurants, 2 rooftop pools, gym, Wi-Fi.
Room amenities: Television, safe, bathrobes, hairdryer, kitchenette, tea & coffee...
Fly from London (regional connections available) to Amman with Royal Jordanian Airways. Transfer to the Boulevard Arjaan Hotel (or similar) for 3 nights.
Explore the ancient citadel of Amman, visit the early Islamic Umayyad Palace, the Graeco-Roman Temple of Hercules, Byzantine churches and see sweeping views across the city. Visit the Archaeological Museum, housing important finds spanning over 100,000 years. Then drive to the eastern desert, passing Umayyad Qasr Kharana and seeing the hunting lodge of Qasr Amra with recently-restored wall paintings. Continue to Azraq oasis, seeing a Roman fort rebuilt in the 13th century and later used by TE Lawrence during the Arab Revolt, and the impressive Wetlands Reserve. Return to Amman via the new highway and Qasr Al-Hallabat.
Drive north through the hills of biblical Gilead to Jerash, one of the best-preserved provincial Graeco-Roman cities in the Near East. Walk through magnificent monumental arches, sprawling oval piazza, colonnaded streets, temples, theatres and Byzantine churches. Then on to visit Umm Qais, ancient Gadara where Jesus performed the swine miracle, then drive down to the Jordan valley with stunning view of Golan Heights overlooking the Sea of Galilee, finally returning to Amman.
Drive to Mount Nebo, from where Moses viewed the Promised Land and see where early Christians built the Memorial Church of Moses adorned with beautiful floor mosaics. Drive to Madaba on the biblical King's Highway, a city with many Byzantine mosaics. Visit the Greek Orthodox Church of St George which contains the famous sixth-century mosaic map of the Holy Land, then the Church of the Virgin complex. On to biblical Mefa'at at Umm ar-Rasas, a town at the edge of the desert with a dozen churches and important mosaics. Continue to the crusader castle of Monréal at Shobak, built in 12th century by King Baldwin I of Jerusalem but later conquered by Saladin, then rebuilt. Drive to Petra and stay 3 nights at the Mövenpick Resort Petra (or similar).
A full-day’s exploration of Petra, the remote desert stronghold of the Nabataean Arabs who created a city in their sandstone valleys, unique in the ancient world. Walk through the Siq, the narrow gorge leading to the Treasury, a magnificent Hellenistic-style rock-cut tomb facade. Continue past the theatre, carved out of solid sandstone, to see other sepulchres, temples and churches. After lunch, take an optional visit to Ad Deir, the largest tomb in Petra overlooking Wadi Araba, the deepest part of the Great Rift Valley. Evening stroll down the Siq illuminated by atmospheric candlelight.
Morning drive to Wadi Rum, the spectacular desert made up of vast valleys and towering sandstone peaks, which was the original base of the Great Arab Revolt (1917-1918) and where <em>Lawrence of Arabia</em>, <em>Red Planet</em> and <em>The Martian</em> films were shot. Visit Lawrence’s spring and see ancient graffiti with animal depictions. Picnic lunch at a Bedouin camp. Return to Petra to see a new museum there.*
Morning visit to the lesser-known Little Petra at Beidah, passing the crusader castle at Wu’eira and a prehistoric settlement. Continue through spectacular mountain scenery down to Wadi Araba and the shores of the Dead Sea. Stop at Safi to see the first medieval sugar factory and the Ottoman fort attacked by the Arab Legion with Lawrence in 1918. Then climb up to the Sanctuary of Lot, venerating the cave where Lot and his daughters took refuge from the destruction of Sodom. Below, visit the Museum at the Lowest Place on Earth, which explains the unique human and environmental history of the Dead Sea. Drive along the shores of the Dead Sea to the Mövenpick Resort & Spa Dead Sea (or similar) for 2 nights.
At leisure to swim in the Dead Sea with use the resort’s spa and facilities. Optional excursion to the site where Jesus is believed to have been baptised in the Jordan river and/or the Dead Sea Panorama Complex, which describes the geology of the region.
Morning transfer to Amman airport and fly direct to London Heathrow with Royal Jordanian Airways.
You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.