Tuesday we went to Petra. It seemed so surreal. Every second of it seemed like a dream. Thinking back on the experience now, it doesn’t seem like it even actually happened. I kept looking around myself, and I was simply overcome with a feeling of awe.
You walk about half a mile or so before you get to the infamous entry way to Petra: the Siq (or, according to Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the canyon of the Crescent Moon). The Siq itself is an incredible site. You walk through this narrow canyon that goes on for almost a mile, with walls that reach high into the sky. The rocks on either side have incredible colorings, and there are interesting carvings on your way through, including men, camels’ feet, and whales.
|Becca and I at the entrance to the Siq|
|Me in the Siq|
Then, as you near the end, you suddenly catch a glimpse of the Treasury (probably the most recognizable building at Petra). And your breath is taken away, and you have one of those moments I described earlier, when you can’t believe that you’re actually seeing what you are. It’s such a magnificent, giant, beautiful building – and none of those words even begin to do it justice.
|This is what it looks like as you round the corner from the Siq into Petra proper. Probably my favorite picture I took all day.|
|Me in front of the Treasury|
|Vladi and I with our "serious faces" in front of the Treasury|
After spending some time there, we began our long (and steep) hike to the Monastery. The hike was hard, but absolutely beautiful. There are carvings everywhere, and from the high altitude you can look over all of Petra.
|An overlook on the way up to the Monastery|
|Posing in an arch, with Becca and Sarah creeping in the back|
|More facades on the way up to the Monastery|
The Monastery itself was incredible. It was so incredibly large. Just the step up to the door was about six feet high! But we made it up and looked around inside, once again, it was pretty small. Actually, considering how much work must have gone into the outside, the inside was a bit of a let down. But all of the beautiful carvings of Petra simply serve as facades to mausoleums, so I suppose that was to be expected (although Indiana Jones is completely misleading in that regard…)
|A far back shot of me and the Monastery - see how big it is?!?!|
|A closer up shot where you can actually see my face|
|Sarah, Me, Becca, and Crystal in the doorway of the Monastery|
|A whip action shot, channeling my best Indiana Jones|
We then hiked back down, and went back to the Treasury where we rode camels! I expected it to feel somewhat like riding a horse, but the height you have on a camel is far greater than any of the large horses I’ve ridden. After dismounting the camels we went back through the Siq, where we then picked up horses to ride back to the entrance of the park. After some reassuring, I convinced the man in charge of the horse I was riding to let go of the lead rope and let me just ride it myself. My reputation around here is that of the “Montana Cowgirl,”, so I had to live up to that. I think I succeeded fairly well. :)
|That is a camel. And I'm on top of it. What...??|
|Me, the Camel, and the Treasury. We make a good group.|
|The horse ride back to the buses|
|Before I was able to convince him that I could ride on my own... facing backwards may not have helped the problem.|
|Petra senior pic! Haha.|