In the past few years I have had the privilege to visit several countries especially in Asia and the Middle East. Being a photographer allows me to have a different approach when I visit a place, compared to the regular tourists. I have to research quite in advance about the place I’ll visit and time is always an issue: it’s never enough and I have to produce a lot of material and it must be of excellent quality of course. So, as you can imagine, preparation is fundamental.
When in the spring of 2015 I was asked to work for an assignment in Jordan I was extremely happy! But then after few moments of excitement I realized that Jordan is not just another country to add to your bucket list. Jordan lies right next to Syria and, as you know, Syria is quite dangerous. Being so close to it I wondered if Jordan was a safe country. My friends were worried too. After all, if you watch the TV or read the newspapers you might think that all the middle-east is a huge battlefield, when actually it is not.
Fortunately, I don’t watch the TV and I don’t read newspapers so after a quick search on some other travel blogs I realized that Jordan is a really safe and amazing country. I’m really glad that I didn’t let the mass-media scare me: Jordan is without any doubt one of the best countries I’ve been so far.
What makes Jordan so different? It might sound strange, but actually all the negative hype about this country has some positive aspects too: you don’t expect much and you end up being really surprised. Take for instance Amman, the capital. Though over 1 million people live in the city, still you feel welcome, no matter where you go. The very first night in Jordan I visited the downtown area with some other fellow bloggers and suddenly a young boy approached me offering coffee. After a few minutes he came back with a cup full of amazing coffee aromatized with cinnamon. I have visited many capitals in Europe and something like this never happened to me. This is just an example but travelling throughout the country I had the same impression: people are nice and extremely happy to share the few things they have with you.
Another amazing thing about Jordan is that it is a country with an incredible history. It’s possible to visit the very same places where the 3 major religions of the world developed. The traces left by Greeks and Romans are evident all over the country too. The city of Jerash is definitely worth a visit: it looks like Rome but without tourists! Its beauty is incredible!
Being Italian I appreciate good food and this is probably why I love Jordan so much. The food is what surprised me the most about this country. You can find a lot of vegetables, spices, hummus and other special sauces and even if you eat a lot you never feel stuffed. When the sun is too hot you can have a refreshing Lemon-mint drink and you’ll feel great.
But when you think of Jordan there are three other things that come to the mind: Petra, the Wadi Rum and the Dead Sea.
Petra is the most famous landmark of Jordan, thanks to movies like Indiana Jones and Transformers. But this ancient city is much more than the Treasury (the famous faade carved into the stone). It takes at least two hours to walk all the way from the entrance to the other side of the city. The entire city is carved into the mountains and once was the capital of a very powerful kingdom that nobody dared to attack, not even the Romans. The engineers who built it had an incredible amount of knowledge and ingenuity that went lost for centuries.
The Wadi Rum is probably the closest thing to Mars that we can find here on our planet. No wonder this huge red desert had been used to record movies like The Martian. The Bedouins that live in this desert have adapted to resist the scorching sun in summer and the freezing cold desert nights. The famous Lawrence of Arabia passed through this desert several times.
Last but not least, the Dead Sea is another attraction that makes this country so unique. True, you can float in this sea also in Israel but the Jordan side is more developed and you can find some amazing 5 stars resorts here.
Before visiting Jordan I didn’t know much about this part of the world and I didn’t know it had so much to offer. After a week spent in this incredible country I wonder why there are such few tourists here. It is true that many don’t know that Jordan is a safe country, but I hope to give my small contribution to the tourism development of this beautiful country.
Fabio is an Italian travel blogger and photographer, founder of the website https://www.fabionodariphoto.com/
He loves to explore new places and learn about new cultures, especially in Asia. His pictures have been featured on many important publications and websites including Lonely Planet, Rough Guides, National Geographic, The New York Times, Getty Images etc. He regularly works with tourism boards to promote tourism in lesser known destinations. He is presently studying Chinese Mandarin to have a better understanding of the Chinese culture.
Check out more of his breathtaking pictures on Fabio's Instagram account. Here is a small glimpse of his wonderful work!
Petra: no words can describe the beauty of this place. Established possibly as early as 312 BC as the capital city of the Arab Nabataeans, it is a symbol of Jordan, as well as its most-visited tourist attraction. The Nabateans were so strong that not even the Romans dared to fight them. If you wonder whether Jordan is a safe country or not, read the post on my blog. ____ #jordan #petra #unravelingjordan #shareyourjordan #bbctravel #yahootravel #bestintravel #beautifuldestinations #wanderlust_heart #instagram #lonelyplanet #me #nofilter #love #iphone #firstpost #traveladdicted #travelblog #natureaddictsun #travel #yahoo7travel #natgeovisual #awesomeearth #awesome_earthpix #instagood #photooftheday #tbt #beautiful #passionpassport