ETA Amman 1230Hrs to Karak Castle

Karak Travel Blog

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Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle

So after 2 months of wait, we are now heading to Jordan - which had been been one of a very popular travel destination in Middle East. Have read many publications, writeups, blogs, articles and of course, heard from those been there. December is said to be a less busy period, whereby the peak in Jordan is July till Sept (when the other part of Middle East is scorching hot & summer holidays). We didn't really plan much for this trip except for looking for researching on cities we would stop & see. It will be quite a rather short trip of four and a half days, so we would have to be really compact in our itinerary & even though we'd like to keep our expenses low, but most likely this will not happen as we're catching time.

So what's our initial plan? Well, Petra & Wadi Rum are definitely gonna be the two HIGHLIGHTS in our trip.

Path at Karak Castle
And the rest of the days & in the between journeys, we'll explore Madaba, Karak, Amman, Jerash, Dead Sea and yes, we've included Aqaba in the plan. A few TB members said it's quite impossible to do all that in 4 days - but with my stubborness, I refused to believe and stayed hopeful. We've also weighed our options to rent a car during the entire stay to ease transportation & costs OR hire a car plus driver to bring us around. Yes, driving is allowed in Jordan (for travellers of any nationalities with valid driving license from their home country). However, after careful thought of the risk in getting lost along the way, struggle with signages & time wasting - we've decided to proceed with hiring a car/driver based on the day & how we need them.
Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
 Hmmm...all looks set & ahlan Jordan...here we come!

We departed from Bahrain to Amman with a flight duration of 3 hours. Reached Amman at about 12.30pm, with no delays. We're able to obtain visa on arrival with a cost of only JOD 10. The counter is located opposite the immigration checkpoint in the airport (you can't miss it). There's also a forex next to it, in case you don't have any local currency with you.

So, our first plan would be to go to Aqaba, and work our way up north. We'll spend a couple of hours there since we're not into diving & then head to Petra at night. There's a bus option from airport to Amman and change to Aqaba.

Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
But that will lead us to reaching Aqaba at 6.30pm and it will be totally dark with nothing to see (the skies gets dark after 5pm in Jordan during winter). So, we decided to skip Aqaba in our itinerary & move straight to Wadi Musa for Petra. We chartered a taxi from airport which costed us JOD 80. It may seem expensive, but it was the only option if we want to save time later on our trip. Pros? Well, we saved 4 hours and perhaps a day (since bus schedules to/from Wadi Musa are indefinite from Amman). We've also got the chance to see the scenic Jordan along the highway.

Along the way we stopped in Karak Castle aka Crusaders Castle to catch some cool pictures & experience it's history. Entrance cost only JOD 1 per person but you definitely need to know the roads to reach there.

Roman Carving on the wall of Karak Castle
  The castle was prominent in the 12th century during battle between the Muslim and French, headed by Salah Al Din. Based on my observation, the castle had some quite unique structures & hidden spaces e.g. a room believed to be a kitchen with water fountain source, semi-arched tunnels, horse stables, strategic holes on the walls to allow air & light etc. We spent about an hour there with some photo taking. There's a market in the evening outside the castle, in the town but we didn't get the chance to see it since we're heading for Petra. There's also a hotel in the area and some decent looking restaurants.

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Karak Castle @ Crusaders Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
Path at Karak Castle
Path at Karak Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusaders Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusaders Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
Roman Carving on the wall of Karak…
Roman Carving on the wall of Kara…
Stable of Karak Castle
Stable of Karak Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusaders Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusaders Castle
Karak Castle @ Crusader's Castle
Karak
photo by: vances