Pictures from the Jordan

Following the Footsteps of Moses and Jesus

A Pilgrimage to Jordan

Led by:

The Rev. Orion Davis
St. Mary's Episcopal Church
Sparta, NJ

April 6 – 16, 2010

Trip map

DAY 1, Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - Depart from JFK International Airport in New York on Royal Jordanian Airlines for your non-stop transatlantic flight.  Meals on the aircraft. D

DAY 2: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 - We will arrive in Amman, Jordan where we will clear immigration and meet our driver and guide and transfer to our Amman hotel for a “welcome to Jordan” dinner and overnight. D

DAY 3: Thursday, April 8, 2010 - We will visit Jerash, a close second to Petra on the list of favorite destinations in Jordan.  The ancient city boasts an unbroken chain of human occupation dating back more than 6,500 years and fantastic ruins from the Christian era.  We will visit Pella, magnificently set in a fold of the hills that rise from the Jordan Valley 78 km north of AmmanPella, known in Arabic as Tabaqat Fahl, is one of the most ancient sites in Jordan and a favorite of archaeologists because it is so exceptionally rich in antiquities.  This evocative site is where the early Church leaders established themselves after being driven out of Jerusalem.  We will return to Amman for dinner and overnight. BD

DAY 4: Friday, April 9, 2010 - We visit the Roman Theater, the most obvious and impressive relic of Amman.  The theater, built during the reign of Antonius Pius (138-161 CE), is cut into the northern side of a hill that once served as a necropolis—or graveyard.  It is very similar in design to the amphitheater at Jerash and can accommodate 6000 spectators.  We will visit the Citadel where we will see its most fascinating structure known simply as al-Qasr ("the Palace").  It dates back to the Islamic Umayyad period.  Its exact function is unclear, but it includes a monumental gateway, an audience hall and four vaulted chambers.  A colonnaded street also runs through the complex.  To the north and northeast are the ruins of Umayyad palace grounds.  We will see the remains of a small Byzantine Basilica located near the Citadel.  Corinthian columns mark the site of the church, which is thought to date from the sixth or seventh century CE.  About 100 meters south of the church is what is thought to have been a temple of Hercules, today also known as the Great Temple of Amman.  The temple was built in the reign of the emperor Marcus Aurelius (161-180 CE), and is currently under restoration.  Then continuing East from Amman, we will visit several sites in the Desert Castle Loop.  We will return to Amman for dinner and overnight. BD

DAY 5: Saturday, April 10, 2010 - We visit Bethany Beyond the Jordan, thought by many to be the true Baptismal site of Jesus.  Here at this peaceful site we will renew our Baptismal vows before continuing south along the Kings Highway and stopping at Madaba to see the remains of the mosaic map of the Middle East and Jerusalem.  The Madaba Mosaic Map is a unique piece of art made in the 6th century A.D. as a decoration for the pavement of a church in the town of Madaba.  At that time Madaba was part of the so called Provincia Arabia, and was inhabited by Aramaic speaking Christians descendant from the ancient biblical people of the Moabites.  The mosaic was discovered accidentally about one hundred years ago (in 1897) while constructing a new church for the Greek-Orthodox Arab community, which was then settling on the very ruins of the ancient town of Madaba.  Now on to Mt. Nebo where Moses viewed the Promised Land and from the mountain top, you will see the Jordan Valley, Jericho and the Judean Hills beyond.  We will continue to our resort on the shores of the Dead Sea for dinner and overnight. BD

DAY 6: Sunday, April 11, 2010 - This morning we have the opportunity to hike in the Mujib Nature Reserve, the lowest nature reserve in the world.  Created in 1987 by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, the reserve boasts 300 species of plants, 10 species of carnivores, and the abundant variety of birds which make the reserve a must for serious bird watchers.  The afternoon will be free to enjoy the resort and the environs of the Dead Sea on your own.  Dinner and overnight at the Dead Sea. BD

DAY 7: Monday, April 12, 2010 - Leaving the Dead Sea, we venture to Wadi Rum, one of the greatest natural landscapes in the world.  This area gets its name because it is the largest and most magnificent of the network of Wadis (valleys) that make up the easiest trade route for the caravans and the nomadic Bedouins to the Arabian Peninsula.  We will take a half day jeep trek to explore the landscape and share a picnic lunch.  Our overnight will be in tents in the nature preserve. BLD

DAY 8: Tuesday, April 13, 2010 - We begin to travel toward Petra stopping to visit the Crusader Castle of Karak with its many dark passages, deep holes and sheer drops.  The remains of the castle date mainly from Mamluke times and it has been used and rebuilt for so long that it is difficult for archaeologists to determine exactly which period the various parts of the castle are from.  We continue to Dana Village with the impressive overview of the Dana Nature Preserve.  Continuing on the King’s Highway, we pass Shobak Castle before arriving at Petra for dinner and overnight. BD

DAY 9: Wednesday, April 14, 2010 - We have a full day to explore this city also known as the Red Rose City of Petra which some historians equate with Sela, a town in which the Israelites had a famous victory over the local Edomites.  We will have the choice to walk to the site or to take a carriage ride through the dramatic “siq” or canyon.  We will see the Treasury, carved in pink stone, and continue past the Roman Theatre, the Corinthian Tomb and Palace Tomb.  As we continue we see the theatre, the Roman Soldier Tomb, the Columbarium and much more as we make our way to the High Place of Sacrifice located at the top of Jabal Mount.  The High Place of Sacrifice is considered to be the oldest major cultic facility in Petra.  We visit the museum and, for those who take the 60 minute walk to the Monastery, they will be rewarded with the best sites in Petra.  Dinner and overnight at Petra. BD

DAY 10: Thursday, April 15, 2010 - We will take a leisurely departure from Petra and travel north back to Amman.  We will have a “farewell to Jordan dinner” and overnight in Amman. BD

DAY 11: Friday, April 16, 2010 - We will transfer to the Amman airport where we will bid our guide and driver goodbye and board our Royal Jordanian Airlines flight for our nonstop flight back to the USA arriving at JFK this afternoon.  B and meals on the aircraft. B

Price: $2,849.00.  Price is based on double occupancy without airline taxes and fuel surcharges.  Roundtrip air from New York JFK airport.  (Airline taxes and fuel surcharges NOT included and estimated to be $300 +)  Air transportation available from other cities.  Single supplement $699.00.

Final Payment due February 1, 2010

Cancellation Penalties
◊ Deposit of $200 per person due by October 1.
◊ Until January 31, 2010 - $100 plus any unrecoverable fees
◊ Until February 28, 2010 - $200 plus any unrecoverable fees
◊ After March 1, 2010: NO REFUND

An application for travel insurance will be included with the receipt for your deposit.  We strongly recommend that you seriously consider this coverage.

Meals: B Breakfast, L Lunch, D Dinner, S Snack

The itinerary is subject to change due to local conditions or at the discretion and direction of the leader or guide.