Day 17: Trip to Umm Qais, Ajlun and Jerash (3)
Ajloun Travel Blog› entry 29 of 54 › view all entries
The second stop was Ajlun, a little village with several interesting sights, the most interesting being the towering castle Qala'at ar-Rabad, perched on the top of a 1250 metre high mountain overlooking the village and valley beyond. What was interesting about this particular castle is that it was built as a Muslim fortress and had always remained in Muslim hands. So unlike most of the castles we had seen before, which were either captured by the crusaders, or built by the crusaders (and later captured and rebuilt by the Mamluks or Ottomans), this castle had always been under Muslim control.
However, despite this interesting fact this castle can in no way can compete with the castles we have seen in Syria. What is left of it today is just a small pile of rubble, of which the main buildings have been partially restored (after being destroyed in earth quakes) but little is left of the impressive seven guard towers for which the place was known.
It was an ok place to hang out for half an hour, but not more than that. The place also was absolutely packed with Jordanian (or at least Arab) tourists. And they were somewhat loud, so it didn't really add much to the enjoyment of the visit.
So we'd seen enough after about half an hour, but somehow our driver had decided we needed an hour and a half for this place, and he would not budge. So we just sat in the sun for a while, eating an ice cream. Ah well, there are worse places to sit in the sun eating ice cream...