Sunrise Camel Ride & Snorkeling in Aqaba, Jordan

Greetings from the lowest point on earth,

Today was another day filled with what will soon fade into pleasant memories. Awoke at 5:45am sans alarm to go on a sunrise camel ride, went 4x4ing on another track to discover more of Wadi Rum, drove to Aqaba for a snorkeling boat trip on the Red Sea and finally arrived to the hotel in the Dead Sea

Woke up and realized it was sunrise, went outside to take a photo but it didn’t come out so well, 10 minutes later I heard a “Rob are you awake” and it was the Canadian lady from the night before named Layla who has been living with the Bedouin for the last 7 months and is working on a book about her experiences.

We met with Mohammed and went on a 45 minute camel ride as the sun rose, this website has provided plenty of sunsets, few sunrises, glad to have captured one in Wadi Rum. Shortly after it was time to drink tea with the staff at Captain’s Camp before heading out on another 4×4 jeep trip into Wadi Rum. The staff at the camp were awesome people, really enjoyed my stay there. We got along really well, was like saying goodbye to old friends.

We met up with a really cool guy named Yaser who runs Wadi Rum Full Moon to see some monster sand dunes and more inscriptions. There is a large crack in the side of the mountains that resembles a cave and is filled with inscriptions. Some similar to the ones depicted yesterday and other ones including ancient Muslim writings. You can walk into such said cave for roughly 10 minutes, it’s quite vast. We drank more tea at another Bedouin settlement before heading to Aqaba.

Aqaba is the only port city in Jordan and has a real “resort town” feel to it in my estimation, it’s situated along the Red Sea and hosts many things to do. We arrived and drove around, checking out some of the hotels and walking along some of the busier streets. Palm trees line the streets and hotels were omnipresent. At noon, it was time to board a ship that would take us on a 4 hour cruise in the Red Sea.

About an hour or so out, we dropped anchor and went snorkeling. The water is crystal clear, the photos don’t do it justice as it was a very windy day. The marine life is stunning and so are the corals, lots of work and precautions are being taken to ensure the preservation of such conditions. Saw countless fish I can’t name and many that appeared to be angel and clown fish. Was weird seeing fish from aquariums up close and personal.

Afterwards there was a large BBQ on the boat, over eat but what else is new? Something cool was that 10 of the other guests were from Thailand, others from the USA and some that appeared to be from the UK. The Thai people brought all the hot sauces and spices they have in Bangkok and were more than happy to share with me. It was eating Arabic BBQ with Thai seasoning on the Red Sea, best of both worlds.

Afterwards we made our way to the Dead Sea, it’s about a 4 hour drive from Aqaba if you take your time, stop along the way to enjoy egregious quantities of tea and generally just enjoy the ride. The Dead Sea is actually the lowest point on earth and this unique climate offers many health benefits, more on this later…

Currently writing this from my room at the Movenpick, Dead Sea. All I can say is that this place is class. It’s not even really a hotel, more a resort, no wait, a village. It houses 346 rooms, 9 restaurants, world class spa and countless pools. The photo above is part of the room, feels more like a suite.

Tomorrow should be quite interesting, more on that then.

Tips hat,

5 Comments

  1. Bean

    July 18, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Awesome

  2. crazy sexy fun traveler

    July 20, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    Didn’t u feel weird when riding a camel? I mean when the camel was about to stand up or sit down, with u in a strange position :D At least I was years ago in Tunis :)

    • Rob

      July 21, 2011 at 1:08 am

      It’s definitely a weird sensation! Feel like you’re going to get thrown off, must pay attention for sure. Glad someone warned me…

  3. Lily (Explore for a Year)

    July 22, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    Hi Rob,

    Sounds like quite the adventure day you had! How was the snorkelling compared to other places like Thailand or the Caribbean? I love your desert photos, feels very golden, warm and alluring. Your 6th photo from the top of the rocks/canyon entrance reminds me a little bit of 127 Hours – glad to know you got out of the area with all your limbs in tact ;)

    – Lily

    • Rob

      July 26, 2011 at 11:02 pm

      Yes, barely but I managed to survive. It was very clear and lots of fish. Not as many as say Thailand but it was also a windy day and I didn’t go that close to shore, maybe 15 meters deep so…

      Supposedly much more if you venture closer to shore aka 1-2 meters deep. Great BBQ though ;)

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