Saturday, 10 July 2010

A new world heritage site in Jordan?

Currently we have 3 site classified as World Heritage Sites in Jordan: the well known Petra, Quseir Amra, a desert castle from the 8th century, and Um er-Rasas (Kastrom Mefa'a), an archaeological site containing remains from the Roman, Byzantine and Early Muslim periods (end of 3rd to 9th centuries AD). According to an article in the Jordan Times of yesterday, there is a new strong candidate: Wadi Rum.

Author: David Bjorgen                                                                           

Wadi Rum is located 300km south of Amman. Here are a few facts about this beautiful site. I have taken the information from this website about Wadi Rum. The site has been declared protected area since 1998 and there is a large conservation program in place in order to limit the impact of ever increasing popularity. Wadi Rum covers a stunning 720 square kilometers with sandstone mountains, desert, sandy valleys, narrow canyons and much more. The Bedouin tradition is still alive in the region and is one of the main attractions as well. It is possible to visit Wadi Rum by Jeep, Camel / Horseback ride or simple hiking and one can spend the night at one of the Bedouin camps or for the less adventurous drive further south to Aqaba. We haven't been yet, having preferred to wait to Bibs is a bit older, so we will go next year at some point. I can't wait really, it looks stunning.

Wadi Rum can either be listed as cultural site or as mixed cultural and natural site. The vote will take place next year during the annual session in Bahrain. If the site gets listed it will mean greater preservation programs to ensure that this absolutely amazing place remains well protected. To be included on the World Heritage List, a site must be of outstanding universal value and meet at least one out of ten selection criteria

There is another Wadi mentionned in yesterday's paper as well it is Wadi Feynan. It is located in the Dana Reserve. The solar powered 26 room eco lodge located in the Wadi was in the top 50 of the such lodges in the National Geographic Adventure magazine last year. That little lodge looks lovely, with lots of activities to do on its doorstep.


Zach said...

Cool! It'll be great if Rum can get a little more publicity next to its more famous neighbor, Petra. However, I hope that the Jordan tourism board doesn't jack up the price astronomically like they're doing with Petra. I've heard rumors that come this summer, the price for non-Arabs to visit Petra will balloon from 21 JD to 40 or 50 JD per foreigner. It's awful. The same sort of price multiples (as much as x60) exist for sites in Egypt too, except that an Egyptian pound is a fraction of a dollar so foreigner prices end up being around 6-8 USD.

Visit it for cheap while you still can! In Jordan, popularity ALWAYS means massive fee increases!

Babs said...

Yep you are right, the rates for Petra are changing to 50JD in november (the new rates are already being displayed at Petra), the baptism site is now at 12JD... We can only hope that they will ameliorate the facilities. It's ashame that they do that - 50JD for Petra seems a bit stiff to me - Even though it is beautiful not everybody will be paying that... so Wadi Rum will probably end up with much higher prices as well. Can't wait to go, probably this autumn :)

Others To Read:

Related Posts with Thumbnails