Things I love

  • ~Louis
  • ~Family&Friends
  • ~IceCream
  • ~MyKindle
  • ~CoffeeBreaks
  • ~Sparkles
  • ~Knitwear
  • ~Vanilla
  • ~AllThingsLUSH~
  • GossipGirlxoxo~
  • Chips&Ketchup~

26 April 2014

Hiking Jordan

Last weekend, we went camping in Wadi Dana for a friend's birthday. Wadi in Arabic means valley and Jordan is abundant with them - even in central Amman! Wadi Dana is located sort of in the central-west of Jordan, about a 3-4 hour drive from Amman and was made into a nature reserve in 1993 due to having so many diverse bio-geographical zones and species of plants and animals. You can read more about it here

There are several ways you can drive to Wadi Dana and we decided to take the road along the Dead Sea and then take the turning towards Tafila town through the Kings Highway. I'm really glad we chose this route, as it's so scenic and calm. I love the Dead Sea and considering how close it is to where we live (less than an hour away(!!)) we don't make it down there as much as we really should. Here's an embarrassing confession - I used to think that the Dead Sea was basically a small's nothing like that at all! It is absolutely HUGE and when you're on one end of it, the tip goes right up to the horizon and beyond. Anyway, I'd really advise taking this route if you're heading to Wadi Dana. 

The Dead Sea.
When you turn off away from the Dead Sea highway, you enter the Kings Highway, a long, extremely windy uphill road. It's not quite for the fainthearted (me). It is very beautiful though, in its barrenness. As you climb higher and higher, you get a fantastic view of the valleys below, and the stark contrast between the jagged mountains and flat lands beyond. It does make your journey time to Dana longer but it's worth it. 

View from the Kings Highway.
Dana is a fairly large area as is the nature reserve itself. This means that the "official" camp and biosphere entrance is completely separate to Dana village (where we had lunch) and the camp that we stayed at, which was a few kilometres away from the first sign of Dana. My friend had stayed at Al-Nawatef camp before and she recommended that we stay there on this trip. I'm so glad she did! It's a lovely little camp, isolated from the world and overlooking a cliff. A short while after getting to the camp, we decided to go for a short walk and explore the area. The weather wasn't too hot at this time so it was perfect. 

The bedouin tents and teepees.

Verandahs outside the tents.

View of the valley.

Fun friends.

We were taken very good care of at the camp. They had a variety of lodging available, little stone rooms, bedouin tents with verandahs over looking the view, large teepees and an area where you could pitch up your tent. Louis and I got one of the stone rooms (the rooms and bedouin tents each have 2 single beds). The room was SO hot but when the night fell and we went to bed, the temperature inside was just perfect, since it was freezing out there. I'm generally very good at camping, but since buying my own sleeping bag (with a dedicated pillow pocket) I find that I can sleep well without thinking of creepy crawlies. Just to note, though, the camp was very clean and had a lot of linen and supplies. There were several bathrooms you could use and Louis managed to have a shower in the morning. The dinner we had was delicious and varied and we were served tea throughout the night. There was a nice group of people at the camp that night and we played games and made jokes. So overall, a fantastic night camping!

The next morning we decided to make the short drive back to the nature reserve, since we were already really in the area. We paid the entrance fee and went for a short hike. The terrain was different to that in Al Nawatef camp and there were more dramatic cliffs that you could peek over.

Interesting terrain.

Jagged rocks leading to the valley below.

Sitting on top of the world.
After our short hike, we decided to try and find Ashoback castle, located near Wadi Musa. We did manage to find it, but unfortunately the road leading up to the castle was closed for works.
Shoback castle.
After having lunch at a local falafel restaurant, Fatafeet, we headed back towards Amman via the Desert Highway, a flat road that takes you all the way from Amman to Aqaba down in the south (this is the road we take when visiting places like Petra and Wadi Rum). Not wanting the weekend to end, one of our friends suggested we get ice cream at Four Winters, a little ice cream cafe that makes your ice cream using liquid nitrogen. Very cool and very yummy!

Now that the weather is ideal, I'm hoping there will be a few more road trips before the hot months of July and August. Have a great weekend everyone!


12 April 2014

Will the third time be a charm?

I think the Universe doesn't want me to visit the Citadel. Together with the Roman Ampitheatre in downtown, they are the symbols of Amman. And I have yet to set foot within those Roman defense walls.

The first time I tried to visit the Citadel, the weather was a bit like this:

Needless to say, they weren't letting anyone in.

The weather has been brightening up here in Amman, so this past Friday, I was determined to be a tourist in Amman and planned to finally visit this monument and test out my new camera. Taking the tourist thing quite seriously, we stopped off at Hashem for some falafel sandwiches. Shamefully, this was another first for me in Amman. I enjoyed the sandwiches, but I think my favourite falafel spot remains Al Quds in Rainbow Street.

I digress.

We finally managed to walk up the "hill" (why people keep insisting that mountains are hills, is beyond me) to the Citadel entrance...only to find this:

Being a Friday, the ticket office had closed at 4pm, 50 minutes before we got there *palm face*.

I'm hoping that my third time will indeed be a charm and I'll get to finally see the Citadel up close and personal. Until then, here are some photos Louis and I took. I got a little excited about the different filters haha.


06 April 2014

Mark Complete

One thing that I really like about being a PA is that I [try] never to utter the statement "I'm too busy" as an excuse. The way I see it, I'm a PA, I should be fabulous (darling) at all things organisational. And simply put, I have the ability to plan my day according to my hours and make sure I manage expectations. And if I see that my day is a busy one, well two things completed is better than no things completed.

Of course this is easier said than done. Whilst I feel that I've done pretty well in never using the I'm too busy excuse for several months now, I have found that this week I really have not been able to complete everything I've wanted to.  My unpacking took 4 days. My flagged task since Thursday is yet to be "marked complete". And I just managed to go to the gym for the first time in two months.

I have indeed felt like those characters in the picture above. And more than once I've thought "should I start panicking or am I in denial that I'm already panicking?". Luckily, I'm slowly making my way through my never ending to do list, doing all I can to keep my cool and of course, resorting to laughing at myself when times get tough. After all, if I'm not going to keep myself entertained, then who will?

Doesn't it feel like sometimes there really just aren't enough hours in the day? Better get better at saying "do you mind if that waits until tomorrow next week?".

How's everyone else doing then? 


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...