Arabian Highway - 11 days

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Chocful of eastern promise, this trip combines Jordan and Syria in 11 remarkable days. Explore crusader castles, legendary cities of the mighty Roman Decapolis such as Jerash, Umm Qais, Bosra and the Rose City of Petra, bob around in the Dead Sea and explore ancient Damascus.

Day 1: Amman
Saturday. Welcome to Jordan and the start of your holiday! Arrive Amman, included transfer to hotel and overnight. Overnight - Amman
A byzantine basilica's in Amman, Jordan
Day 2: Jerash & Umm Quais
Amman - Jerash - Umm Qais - Amman. Driving north, we visit the incredible Roman ruins of Jerash. Second only to Petra in touristic appeal, Jerash is recognised as one of the best-preserved member cities of the Decapolis, a confederation of 10 Graeco-Roman cities. When Emperor Hadrian paid a visit in 129 AD, the place was buzzing. The citizens threw up a Triumphal Arch for him which still stands today. Exemplifying the finesse of Roman urban life, the town boasts a hippodrome, the old sports field that once held 15,000 spectators, a stunning amphitheatre, a colonnaded street paved with original stones and the rut marks of chariots, a nymphaeum replete with ancient fountains trimmed and various temples. From here, we continue to Umm Qais (Gadara), a dramatic black-basalt Roman city of the Decapolis with panoramic views over the Sea of Galilee and the Golan Heights. Overnight - Amman (B)
Arabian Highway - 11 days Go Guide : :Check out the go guide for details of the tour, info on visas, climate, money, what to bring and more!
Float like a boat in the Dead Sea
Day 3: Mt Nebo & the Promised Lands
Amman - Mt Nebo - Umm ar Rasas - Petra. Today, we tour the citadel, Archaeological Museum and enjoy free time shopping in the local souq before arriving at Mt Nebo to take in panoramic views across the Promised Lands. Later we explore the deserted Roman garrison town on the ancient caravan route and beautiful mosaics of Umm ar Rasas. Overnight - Petra (B)
Day 4: Petra
Petra. Explore Petra! Taking a walk through the mysterious siq (an ancient passage created thanks to a geological fissure) we are confronted by the spectacle of the breath-taking rose-red facade of the Treasury. Amazing Nabataean and Roman ruins are on tap here at Petra, including tombs, a Roman road, temples and amphitheatre. The energetic can ascend the many stone carved steps to Ad-Deir, better known as the Monastery. Consider opting for our Petra Kitchen bolt-on tonight! Overnight - Petra (B)
The treasury at Petra in Jordan
Petra - Wadi Rum - Karak - Dead Sea - Madaba. Today, there is the opportunity to return to the Rose City before our afternoon drive to Wadi Rum and 4x4 jeep safari. Tonight tuck into dinner, Jordanian-style.

On the morning of day 6, we explore the 12th century crusader castle of Karak (or Shobak Castle) before descending to the lowest point on the earth's surface - the Dead Sea. The intense salinity of the mineral rich water creates an unusually high degree of buoyancy. Opt for a dip, without any effort at all. A short drive leads us to the ancient Christian-Muslim market town of Madaba Overnight - Wadi Rum (1) Madaba (1) (B:2, D:2)
Madaba - Damascus (Syria). Famed for its Byzantine mosaics, including the fascinating map of the Holy Land made in the 6th century out of two million stone pieces and now housed in the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George. Madaba - the most important Christian centre in Jordan, its mosaics, little shops and cafe’s offers us gentle respite. Travelling onward to Syria, we attend to immigration formalities at the border, we continue to the nation’s charming capital. Evening at leisure. Overnight - Damascus (B)
Ummayad Mosque in the old city of Damascus
Day 8: Damascus
Damascus - breakfast. Today, we enjoy a tour of reputedly the oldest continuously inhabited city on earth. Thoroughly charming, compact and bustling, Damascus (Ash-Sham to locals) is studded with rich examples of Islamic and Ottoman architecture. The heart of the city is Martyrs Square. In the side streets just off the square, there are lots of eateries serving shawarma and felafel and pastry shops serving sweetmeats. However, just east is probably the real beating heart of Damascus - the Old City. Surrounded by what was once a Roman wall and rebuilt several times over the last 2000 years, the Old City boasts a main thoroughfare, Straight Street which has been here since Graeco-Roman times. Just beyond the Citadel is the colourful Souk al-Hamidiyya, whilst just a stone’s throw from here is the Umayyad Mosque. Built in 705AD, the facades around the central courtyard are adorned with golden mosaics. South of the mosque is Azem Palace. This evening, enjoy a hammam at a Damascene bath house before enjoying the magnificent view from Mt Qassioun. Overnight - Damascus (B)
The statue of Saladin sits proudly over the old city in Damascus
Day 9: Palmyra or Krac des Chevaliers
Damascus - breakfast. Free day to enjoy Damascus or book our optional excursion to Ma’alula, an ancient town where the locals still speak Aramaic, the language of Christ & Krac des Chevaliers, a crusader castle of epic proportion OR the spectacular ruins of Palmyra – perhaps Syria’s number one sight! (payable locally). Overnight - Damascus (B)
The ancient roman decapolis at Bosra in Syria
Day 10: Bosra & Madaba
Damascus - Madaba. Bidding Damascus farewell, we travel south to Bosra, a city of the ancient Roman Decapolis, which boasts possibly the best preserved Roman theatre in the Middle East. Leaving Bosra, we continue south to the frontier, where we attend to customs formalities and cross back over into Jordan. Onward to Madaba, we’ve the remains of the evening to relax. Overnight - Madaba (B)
Day 11: Madaba
Tuesday. Madaba - Amman. Spend the morning at leisure before hotel check-out and included onward transfer to Amman's Queen Alia airport.

NOTE: If more than 4 persons, the group will travel with a driver (not a tour guide) from Madaba - Damascus and from Bosra to Madaba. Our driver will attend to all immigration formalities for passengers and vehicles. If less than 4 persons, public transport will be used upon the journey from Madaba - Damascus, with representation at the Syrian border. (B)

Perseids Meteor Shower Departure - 11 Aug 2012.

Why not combine this tour with the amazing celestial spectacle of the Perseids Meteor shower? The Perseids meteor shower is a spectacular celestial light show, that has mystified and amazed sky watchers for nearly 2000 years. The night sky is lit up by often over 60 meteors per hour! You can witness the incredible meteor shower from our desert camp in Wadi Rum, where you will spend two incredible nights star-gazing, when the meteor shower is at its peak on the 13th and 14th August. Please see the Go Guide for details of the amended itinerary. Supplement applies.

Other tours that include the meteor shower are:
Cairo to Damascus - departing 04 AUG 2012
Perseid's Meteor Shower - departing 11 AUG 2012
Road to Jerusalem - departing 11 AUG 2012
Passage to Petra - departing 12 AUG 2012
Tour Details
  • Starts in: Amman / Ends in: Madaba
  • Departs: Saturdays - year round
  • No local payment required
  • Breakfast:10, Lunch: 0, Dinner: 2
  • Hotel Rating: 2 - 3 star (+ wadi rum camp)
  • Tour Guide: Yes
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