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Jordan Photographic Discovery
9 days
Jordan - Trip code JDP

Jordan Photographic Discovery

This trip is a great way to see and photograph Jordan with Robert Harvey, a top photographer whose work has been recognised with the Excellence Award of the Fédération Internationale de l'Art Photographique. Organised to maximise photo opportunities, Robert will be on hand to assist in getting the best images possible of the landscapes, monuments and people of Jordan. We will photograph the fabled rock-hewn city of Petra, gaining special access to the site before the crowds, capture the Druze tribes in Azraq, and spend time in the desert in Wadi Rum, seeking out some spectacular desert scenes and experiencing the Bedouin lifestyle.

Trip highlights

  • Petra - Spend two full days discovering the awe-inspiring 'Rose Red City' with special access before the crowds to photograph this incredible site
  • Wadi Rum - Camp overnight to capture the dunes and canyons of the desert that inspired Lawrence of Arabia
  • Jerash - Visit one of the best-preserved Roman provincial towns in the world
  • Photography - A unique chance to capture stunning images with advice and assistance from an expert
Accommodation grade:
Standard
Our standard, mid-range accommodation offers a good level of service, often with other amenities such as a restaurant, bar, garden or swimming pool. Generally rooms will be comfortable with en suite facilities.
Trip pace:
Relaxed
You can enjoy easy-going activities and experiences on these Relaxed pace tours, with opportunities to absorb the sights and immerse yourself in the local surroundings, but still come home feeling relaxed and refreshed.
Group Size:
10 - 16
Maximum group size ranges from between 6 to 20 people, depending on the type of trip, the transport and accommodation used and activities included. We rarely have groups that are smaller than five or six people and the average is 12 people plus an Explore leader.

Itinerary

Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.

Day 1 - Join trip in Amman

We join our tour in Amman, the capital of Jordan and one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. Now home to almost half of the country's population, it is a fascinating city of contrasts, where the very ancient and the modern collide.

Accommodation: Toledo Hotel(or similar)

Standard Hotel
Swimming pool available
Single room available
Meals Provided: Breakfast
Day 2 - Capture the Roman city of Jerash in the morning light, photograph the Druze of Azraq and explore the Amman's souks

This morning we drive north of the capital to ancient Jerash. Populated for over 6,500 years, the city's golden age was in Roman times when it was conquered by General Pompey and became one of a confederation of ten allied Middle Eastern cities known as the Decapolis League. Now, because of the way was preserved in sand before its excavation, it is widely acknowledged as one of the best-preserved Roman provincial towns in the world. Walking around the colonnaded streets, soaring hilltop temples, impressive theatres and its chariot-racing stadium, it is easy to imagine Roman life carrying on around you. We arrive at the site very early to take advantage of the warm morning light and beat the crowds, spending several hours exploring and photographing the site's columns, squares and ancient streets.

After leaving Jerash we travel to Azraq where there is a large community of Druze people. They follow a faith which is considered a sect of Islam, but includes elements based on the teachings ancient philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle. They are not required to adhere to the traditional five pillars of Islam and reincarnation is one of their key beliefs. Conversion is not permitted so a Druze must be born in to the faith. A distinct style of dress consisting of black or dark blue robes and white headgear, along with impressive moustaches, make them very photogenic. We'll capture them going about their daily lives: drinking tea, working in craft shops or sitting in the market place.

In the afternoon we return to Amman and take a stroll through the markets and souks in the early evening light. Busy and full of local people, we'll be able to capture the daily life of the capital, its bustling street scenes and colourful market stalls.

Accommodation: Toledo Hotel(or similar)

Standard Hotel
Swimming pool available
Single room available
Meals Provided: Breakfast
Day 3 - Photograph the old town of As Salt and the Dead Sea before driving to Petra

On the old highway from Amman to Jerusalem lies the ancient town of As Salt and we'll stop here before heading south to the Dead Sea. Believed to have been built during the time of Alexander the Great, As Salt is littered with the remnants of its long history including Roman tombs, a 13th century fortress and impressive Ottoman houses and mansions from the town's most prosperous period in the late 19th century. We'll wander around the town and capture the architecture and old streets, seemingly from a time gone by, before departing for the Dead Sea.

The Dead Sea is so called due to its very high salinity which creates an environment in which life cannot exist, and it is also the world's lowest point. We seek out a section of the coast where there are salt formations and an interesting coastline, providing us with some foreground for our shots. We spend a few hours working our way along the coast, finding the most photogenic spots, before continuing to Petra.

Accommodation: Petra Palace Hotel(or similar)

Standard Hotel
Swimming pool available
Single room available
Meals Provided: Breakfast
Day 4 - Photograph the beautiful ‘Rose-Red City’ of Petra

Over the next two days we explore and photograph the mysterious and beautiful city of Petra. We have special permission to enter before the site opens for the day so we can be in position to get our shots before the crowds arrive, and take advantage of the golden morning light as it illuminates this wonderful location.

Famously referred to as 'a rose red city half as old as time', Petra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and also made the list of the new wonders of the world which was produced in 2001. The ancient city is carved from the living rock and has retained its grandeur throughout the centuries; nothing really prepares you for your first visit here. Accessed by walking through a kilometre-long chasm known as the Siq, the walls of which soar to a height of 200m, Petra's most famous monument, the Treasury, appears dramatically at the end, carved out of the sheer, dusky-pink rock face - it's a great spot for capturing an iconic image. The Treasury's miraculously well-preserved 43 metre-high facade dwarfs everything around it and perfectly represents the engineering genius of the Nabataean people who built the site some time between the 4th and 1st centuries BC.

There is much more to the site than the Siq and Treasury, and while you wander through literally hundreds of tombs, temples and colonnaded streets, it's easy to imagine caravans loaded with frankincense, spices and textiles travelling along the dusty lanes. Today we can still get an approximation of this scene, and capture it with our cameras, as the local Bedouin who live in the site travel through on camels and donkeys, offering some very authentic photography opportunities.

In the afternoon we return to Petra to shoot the site in afternoon light. For sunset we will drive up to a high vantage point known as Mount Algararah which overlooks Wadi Araba and the surrounding mountains. From the top there stunning views of Wadi Mousa town, the Sharah Mountains and the Wadi Araba desert.

Accommodation: Petra Palace Hotel(or similar)

Standard Hotel
Swimming pool available
Single room available
Meals Provided: Breakfast
Day 5 - Continue exploring Petra and visit the site in the evening when it is lit by candlelight

This morning you can return to Petra once again before the site opens, or have free time to visit at your own pace. You may choose to climb the steep path to the 'High Place of Sacrifice' for a view over Wadi Araba and the Negev Desert, or trek up to the impressive 'Monastery' - Petra's largest monument.

In the evening we experience Petra by candle light as the Siq and the Treasury are lit up by hundreds of candles, creating a wonderfully atmospheric scene. Aside from enjoying the spectacle, this gives us the opportunity to get some different shots of the site, and work with the flickering light as it plays on the rocks and the façade of the Treasury.

Accommodation: Petra Palace Hotel(or similar)

Standard Hotel
Swimming pool available
Single room available
Meals Provided: Breakfast
Day 6 - Sunrise over Petra and the Araba Mountains and drive to Wadi Rum

We'll be out early once again this morning to capture the sunrise, choosing Mount Braq for its views over Petra and the Araba Mountains. We'll be in position for dawn and stay around to capture the golden light once the sun has risen. After returning to the hotel for breakfast, we visit the nearby abandoned village of al-Ji. Here there are extensive remains of houses dating from the 17th century which we will explore and photograph before driving to the desert and Wadi Rum, the area that was once described by T.E. Lawrence as 'vast, echoing and God-like...'. Wadi Rum is characterised by the huge monolithic outcrops of granite rock and sandstone that rise out of the desert with a drifting blanket of sand between them. It is at its most impressive at the beginning and end of the day when the soft light and blue sky create a coppery effect on the sand, and we'll make sure we are in a good spot to capture this during the afternoon light and sunset this evening.

The campsite we use in Wadi Rum presents the opportunity to experience traditional Bedouin living arrangements in a large communal goat hair tent which provides the best protection against the desert extremes of hot and cold weather. The tent is where each tribe would come together to eat, sleep and socialise around a fire pit which is used to brew local sweet tea. It will be laid out with traditional rugs, mattresses, pillows and sleeping bags. Far away from the tourist centre and roads, the camp is intimate and provides great views over the desert. A toilet and wash block with showers is available and private tents can be paid for locally subject to availability.

Accommodation: Muhammed Mutlak Wadi Rum Camp(or similar)

Simple Tented Camp
Meals Provided: Breakfast & Dinner
Day 7 - Early morning photography in Wadi Rum and jeep safari to explore the desert

In the warm morning light we photograph the desert once more before embarking on a Jeep safari, seeking out interesting sand dunes, ancient graffiti and inscriptions carved by people who inhabited the area in the first millennium BC , wild camels and possibly even Bedouin making their way across the desert.

For the afternoon golden hour we'll head out in to the desert again, staying around for sunset. On returning to our camp we enjoy Bedouin hospitality around a campfire and under a blanket of glittering stars; a great setting to share stories while sipping mint and sage tea. In the evening we enjoy a traditional zarb meal. Cooked in an oven with hot coals beneath the desert sands and usually consisting of chicken or goat meat, food has been prepared this way in the desert for hundreds of years. The zarb is accompanied with a delicious selection of mezze such as hummus, mutabbal (which is made from aubergine and sesame seeds) and muhammara, a red pepper dip.

Accommodation: Muhammed Mutlak Wadi Rum Camp(or similar)

Simple Tented Camp
Meals Provided: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Day 8 - Travel to Amman via Shobak and Kerak Castles

We have one more opportunity to go out in to the desert this morning before travelling along the 5,000 year-old King's Highway, just as traders, armies and pilgrims have done before us. We stop off at Shobak Castle which dominates the rugged, remote surroundings before continuing to the impressive to Kerak Castle, imposingly situated on a rocky outcrop next to the road, and containing a maze of stone-vaulted halls and passageways. This ancient crusader stronghold is the most famous of a chain of fortresses built for the holy wars against Islam. We arrive back to Amman in the early evening where there'll be time to explore the capital's busy streets once more on our last evening in Jordan.

Accommodation: Toledo Hotel(or similar)

Standard Hotel
Swimming pool available
Single room available
Meals Provided: Breakfast
Day 9 - Trips ends in Amman

Our trip ends this morning after breakfast in Amman.

Meals Provided: Breakfast

Why book this trip

Planned to maximise photo opportunities, and travelling with professional photographer Robert Harvey for tips and advice on how to take great pictures, this trip is aimed at the keen amateur photographer who wishes to spend more time at each location. However, if you\ d like to explore more you will also be accompanied by an experienced local Tour Leader who will help you get the most out of your visit.

What's included?

Included meals
  • Breakfast: 9
  • Lunch: 1
  • Dinner: 2
Transport
  • Bus
Trip staff
  • Explore Tour Leader
Accommodation
  • 6 nights standard hotel
  • 2 nights simple tented camp
Award Winning Explore Leaders
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Price Guarantee Promise
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Airport Transfers
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FairFX currency card
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Trip information

Country information

Jordan

Climate

During April to November days are generally sunny and hot without rain with temperatures around 32°C. In spring and autumn evenings can be cool and night temperatures can drop suddenly especially in the desert. Expect cold nights in winter (December to February) when temperatures can drop to around 0 degrees. Some rain should also be expected at this time of year.

Time difference to GMT

+2

Plugs

2 Pin Round

Religion

Islam

Language

Arabic

Budgeting and packing

Clothing

Lightweight clothing is recommended, with a sun-hat and neck protection, and a warm sweater and light jacket are advisable for Wadi Rum where early mornings can be very cold.

Women are advised not to wear shorts or dresses that are too revealing as this can attract unwelcome attention in the streets of Islamic towns - loose fitting trousers are ideal.

Footwear

Comfortable walking shoes or boots, trainers and sandals (good grip is vital for Petra).

Equipment

A torch, good quality sunglasses and high factor sunscreen are all useful to have with you during this trip.

Photography equipment:

Camera - A DSLR or mirrorless camera is recommended to make the most of the photographic opportunities on this trip

Lenses - A range of focal lengths from wide-angle (for landscapes and some street scenes) to telephoto is ideal and a focal length suitable for portraits will be particularly useful (50mm - 85mm for example)

Tripod - A lightweight travel tripod is recommended.

Memory cards - It is a good idea to bring spare memory cards and consider bringing something to download your images on to in case you run out of memory space. While cards can be bought on the trip, they may not be available at all locations and the quality cannot be guaranteed.

Charger / spare battery - You will need to bring your charger and a spare battery may also come in handy.

Tipping

Explore leader
At your discretion you might also consider tipping your Tour Leader in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive.
Local crew
Although entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognized part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff will look to members of the group for personal recognition of particular services provided. In order to make things easier for you, the Tour Leaders may organise a group's tips kitty and if this is the case, they will account for it throughout the tour. Accordingly, you should allow 20JD (Jordanian Dinar) for tipping.
International Departure Taxes
The Jordanian government levies on all travellers a departure tax of JD10.00 per person. For travellers departing by air this is usually included in the taxes on the airline ticket and thus nothing will be collected from you at the point of departure. For those travellers departing by land, this will be collected by the immigration authorities at the port of departure from Jordan.
Country Information

Jordan

Food and drink

The costs for meals may vary depending upon location, type of restaurant and number of courses eaten and so the prices given are an average guide. Local restaurants located off the beaten track may be less expensive, whereas an upmarket restaurant located in the centre of a major city may charge more.


Lunch price
£10
Dinner price
£15
Beer price
£4
Water price
£1.5
Foreign Exchange
Local currency
Jordanian Dinar
Recommended Currency For Exchange
Sterling and US$ are widely accepted though exchange rates tend to favour the US$. It is worth taking some money in cash. You may be able to order Dinars from your bank although the rate will usually be lower than purchasing currency in country.
Where To Exchange
Banks or 'Forex' offices in main towns/cities.
ATM Availability
ATMs are widely available, but do not always work.
Credit Card Acceptance
In hotels and some larger shops/restaurants.
Travellers Cheques
Travellers Cheques, although still the safest way of carrying money, are difficult to cash in Jordan. There are high commission charges on Travellers Cheques on a per cheque basis so if using them we suggest you take high denomination cheques. Proof of purchase may be necessary for encashment of Travellers Cheques.

Transport, Accommodation & Meals

Transport Information

Bus

Accommodation notes

Booking a Single Room

All of our group tours are planned and operated on a twin-share basis, meaning that the standard cost is based either on individual travellers sharing accommodation with another group member of the same sex, or people who book together sharing accommodation. Please refer to the tour notes where the single room option availability is detailed on a night by night basis for this tour, and the price for the available nights is detailed on the dates & prices tab by departure date. For Self-Guided trips the Single Room supplement offers the option of a single room each and is charged per person. The Single Room supplement also applies to the third person in a party of three that will be accommodated in a single room.


Our desert camp in Wadi Rum in located in a beautiful and little visited part of the Wadi. We sleep in one large communal Bedouin tent and all bedding is provided. There is even a proper toilet! This campsite also has a handful of separate tents, and if availability allows there may be the option to upgrade to your own single tent if you wish. The cost for this should be paid in cash to your Tour Leader and is $40 per twin tent and $30 for a single.

Essential Information

FCO Advice

We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice click here.

For more information from Explore about travel advice, click here
 

Under 18 immigration guidance

Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.

Price Guarantee

Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions

Visa and Passport Information


Jordan: The Jordanian government have announced that from 01 June 2015, all visa fees will be waivered for tourists of British, American, Australian, New Zealand and Canadian nationalities on arrival at an international Jordanian airport. There are however, certain conditions that each tourist of these nationalities must meet in order to gain the free visa. Most of these are already met by Explore trips; however flight information, passport details and arrival date into Jordan all have an effect on qualifying for the free visa. Please see below for the category that is applicable to your flight arrangements:

The following information relates to the above nationalities travelling on flights to Jordan arranged by Explore arriving on the first day of the tour: In order to qualify for the free visa, the above nationalities must advise their passport details at least 14 days prior to your departure date to Explore and must be met by a representative who will assist with the visa process, this is already arranged by Explore as part of the transfer arrangements from the airport to the start of the tour.

The following information relates to the above nationalities with Land Only arrangements arriving on the first day of the tour: In order to qualify for the free visa, these tourists must advise their passport details at least 14 days prior to your departure date to Explore and must be met by a representative who will assist with the visa process. Land Only customers of the above nationalities arranging their own flights to arrive in Jordan on the first day of the tour must advise their full flight details to Explore at least 7 days prior to your departure date. We will then arrange for the representative to meet you as part of the transfer arrangements from the airport to the start of the tour.

The following information relates to the above nationalities arriving in Jordan prior or after the first day of the tour: In order to qualify for the free visa, tourists of the above nationalities must advise their passport details at least 14 days prior to your departure date to Explore and must be met by a representative who will assist with the visa process. To qualify for the free visa, you must contact Explore at least 7 days prior to your departure date to arrange and purchase a private transfer. We will then arrange for the representative to meet you as part of the transfer arrangements.

Please Note: For all tourists of the above nationalities that do not advise their passport details and for all above nationalities that arrange their own travel arrangements and do not advise their flight details to Explore within the above specified timelines, the Jordanian visa fee of JD40.00 (approximately £45) will be applicable. This must be paid on arrival at an international Jordanian airport in order for individuals to gain a visa to enter the country.

All other nationalities should consult the relevant consulate to determine if they are applicable for the above free visa on arrival or must gain a visa prior to departure.



If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may consider applying through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
 

Booking conditions

Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.

Transfers

Find out more about Trip Transfer Terms and Conditions before you book.

Booking a land only package with Explore

Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information. 

You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.


Joining Tour Abroad

Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will now receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The transfers will be from the Explore designated airport or train station to the joining point of your tour, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.  

Free transfers are not available for Self-Guided, Polar, Tailormade or Tours for Churches customers.

If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.  


For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here

Insurance

It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.

Flight information

Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.


Flight Information

You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.

  

Booking a flight inclusive package with Explore

We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.

On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.

Jordan

Vaccinations

Nothing compulsory, but we recommend protection against malaria, typhoid, tetanus infectious hepatitis and polio. Consult your travel clinic for latest advice on different prophylaxis available against malaria. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.

Dates, prices and booking

Date
Price from
Single room option
Saturday 2 March 2019 - Sunday 10 March 2019
This departure is guaranteed
JDP_2019
From £1940
Single room option +£250
Show full details for this departure, including trip notes
All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
Joining Point
Town
Amman
Time and place
00:00 at Hotel Reception
Ending Point
Town
Amman
Time
09:00
Information
On Day 1 arrive any time from 14.00 and check in at the joining hotel. You may arrive prior to 14.00, though your room may not be available, you can drop luggage off if needed.

Arrival Transfer: Please note you may be required to wait for other Explore group members to clear Jordanian immigration and customs before joining your shared airport transfer. The wait can be up to one hour depending on the length of queues.
If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
Download Trip Notes
Date
Price from
Single room option
Saturday 2 March 2019 - Sunday 10 March 2019
This departure is guaranteed
JDP_2019
From £1345
Single room option +£250
Show full details for this departure, including trip notes
All customers that travel on an Explore Group or Private Journey trip will be provided with a complimentary transfer, provided they arrive and depart into the designated airport or train station on the trip start and end dates. Please see free transfers for terms and conditions.

These trip joining details are provided on a provisional basis and may change prior to this tour departing. Any changes to these details will be updated on this page.
For those not eligible for a free transfer the joining / ending time and location for your trip are detailed below:
Joining Point
Town
Amman
Time and place
00:00 at Hotel Reception
Ending Point
Town
Amman
Time
09:00
If you have booked a pre or post trip accommodation directly with the hotel, or through any other intermediaries, please ensure you regularly check this page in case of any changes.
Download Trip Notes

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