Petra Travel Blog› entry 2 of 4 › view all entries
July 30th, 2007 – by: tsaojam
Petra was a trading city founded by Nabateans, who flourished due to the old trade routes. They became extremely rich and created the city as their cultural center. As trading patterns changed the city eventually fell to disrepair and was eventually abandoned. Apparently the city was literally lost until stumbled upon by an explorer.
You start out with a 10-15 minute trek to the crevice that leads into Petra.
If you want to see Petra at a leisurely pace, then you will definitely not be able to see all the best sites in one day. The hikes range from easy to moderately difficult, and are well worth the effort. Don't rent the donkeys! First off, it's a royal pain in the ass for others who are hiking. Secondly, it's apparently heavily degrading the steps. And third, the donkeys are like as big as me, and I just feel too damn sorry to be riding on one.
Among the places to see are definintely the Treasury, but then again you can't miss it as it is the first structure you see coming out of the canyon and the subject of the ubiquitous and standard Petra shots. But it's striking. Beyond the Treasury, you have a number of choices. I went up to the Monastery, which is a 20 minute hike up mountain, and can be tiring especially on hot days. But it's a relatively nice hike with great views at certain stops, and the Monastery is without a doubt worth the trek. The size of the structure is just daunting. Bedouin musicians sometimes hang out in the cave across from the Monastery, and it was very relaxing having a drink, soaking in the atmosphere with some wonderful local music as a soundtrack. I only wish I had more time to explore all the different locations, but it was definitely amazing.
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