A great itinerary/tour. Our driver, Shadi, was the key. He is a superior driver with a modern, clean, comfortable car. He took care of our every need - gave us water every day. We arrived in Amman prior to hotel check-in so he arranged a tour to Bethany by the Sea. That tour and all others were superb. Each day was full, but there was sufficient time to relax too.
All guides were interesting and knowledgeable and kept a pace we could handle. All spoke English well. All tours were excellent, but floating in the Dead Sea and touring the ancient Petra site were highlights.
We researched Petra and saw several documentaries, but were still surprised by its vastness. We walked 8 miles in rocky, steep terrain during our five hours there. The walk from our hotel to the siq leading to the Treasury was long, giving us time to learn Petra history. We saw numerous tombs from elaborate to simple. We enjoyed seeing camels, donkeys, and horses but chose not to ride although constantly requested to do so. There were more vendors than tourists and they were aggressive and persistent, but that's the culture and knowing they are poor Bedouins scratching out a living made us sympathetic to their entreaties. Our advice is wait until the end to buy to minimize carrying purchases. There were several toilets and plenty of refreshment stands.
We stayed at the Movenpick in Petra and it was a superior hotel with luxury amenities and attentive staff. It is the closest hotel to the Petra entrance and where our guide met us. In Amman we stayed at the Kempinski and it was adequate. Food at both was excellent and plentiful.
Some tour books caution against touring Jordan in February as the weather can be less than optimal, but it was beautiful our entire visit. There were no crowds at any place and in some places we had the sight to ourselves. Made it easier to get good, unobstructed pictures.
The local tour company and especially Shadi made this a memorable experience and we highly recommend this tour.
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