Joining Jack were Tony Flynn (Nebo Tours), Paula Cross (Platinum Travel), Lorraine Kenny (Sunway), Robert Wilson (Travel Solutions), Carol Anne O’Neill (Worldchoice), Dominic Burke (Travel Centres) and Caroline Kerr (Atlantic Travel).
Excitement Around the Dead Sea
Day two started with Jack and the group checking out after a wonderful stay at the Regency Palace hotel.
The group had a busy day ahead of them as today they were visiting the Dead Sea – something that Jack has had on his bucket list for quite some time!
St. George and Marvelous Mosaics
The first stop of the day was a visit to Madaba. Madaba is an ancient town in Jordan, south-west of the capital Amman. It’s known for its 6th-century mosaic map of the Holy Land in the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George. While visiting St. George, Wael, the extremely intelligent and knowledgeable guide was able to really give the group an in-depth history of the church and its meaning to Madaba. Jack and the group were actually lucky enough to experience a religious service taking place within St. George.
After a quick stop at St. George, the group had a brief tour of Archaeological Park of Madaba – an area that displays part of a Roman road, intricate byzantine mosaics and Ottoman-era buildings. Again, Wael was able to provide the group with valuable information which really almost sent you back in time to the scene.
Views at Mount Nebo
The next stop for the group was Mount Nebo. Mount Nebo is a high ridge located in Jordan and is part of the Abarim mountain range. Mount Nebo is mentioned in the Bible as the place where Moses was granted a view of the Promised Land before his death. Nebo offers amazing views and incredible photo opportunities that are worth the admission alone. Entrance costs 2JD which is approximately €2.70.
It was time, Jack was finally on his way to the Dead Sea. After visiting the Holiday Inn and the Kempinski Hotel Ishtar in the Dead Sea area to show the group the variety of hotels and a delightful lunch provided for the group by the Kempinski, the group then made their way down toward the Dead Sea.
It’s Time for the Dead Sea
As Jack had floating in the Dead Sea on his bucket list, this was very exciting as he neared closer to the world’s saltiest sea. The Dead Sea is a salt lake bordered by Jordan to the east and Israel to the west. It lies in the Jordan Rift Valley, and its main tributary is the Jordan River. The Dead Sea’s main attraction point is the fact that it is very hard to do anything in it but float. Jack tried numerous times to push himself down but to no success. It truly is a surreal experience.
After floating in the Dead Sea, guests are advised to cover themselves with mud which was provided to the group at the seaside. This is to remove impurities and dead skin on your body. An added benefit of Dead Sea mud is that the salt and magnesium in it can improve your skin’s functionality by making it a better barrier and more elastic. Dead Sea salt has also been shown as a treatment to make skin healthier. Jack and the group had an extremely enjoyable time at the Dead Sea and it is something none of them will ever forget.
A little fun fact that Jack and the group learned was that the Dead Sea is over 430 meters below sea level and that no living organisms live in it.
The group after a long day of travelling had one more stop before getting to their hotel, the five-star Old Village Hotel.
Slowing the Pace with the Sunset
The final stop of the evening was a quick visit to a viewing point in Tafielah, which gives guests an extraordinary vision of the sun setting over the mountains in a quiet, relaxed environment. A perfect ending to an exhilarating day.
For all hiking and trail hunters, near to Tafielah is Dana. Dana is in the Feynan area in central-western Jordan. It is situated on the edge of Wadi Dana, a large natural canyon, and has views over Wadi Araba. Dana is an extremely popular spot for moderate to advanced hikers which also provides some less difficult options for beginners. It is one of the main areas in all of Jordan for adventure walking.
A special thank you to Nebo Tours, Turkish Airlines and Accident & General Insurance.