White Flag

Aqaba Travel Blog

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Arab flag flying at Aqaba

One thing I didn't know about Aqaba is that it is home to the tallest flagpole in the world.  Atop this is not a white flag but the Arab flag, very similar to the Jordanian and the flags of several other Arab countries and it commemorates the Arab revolt of 1917.  This revolt was the background to Lawrence of Arabia and the famous assault and capture of the Turkish fortress at Aqaba by Lawrence and the Arab forces.  

Aqaba fortress still stands today right in the centre of town.  We take a look but apart from the gatehouse there is little to see and it lies mainly in ruins. 

Although Aqaba has some interesting history, we are really here to relax for a few days and to do a couple of days diving in the Red Sea/Gulf of Aqaba.

Aqaba fortress
  After visiting a couple of dive shops we sign up for diving with a local Jordanian operator "Mr Frogman" for 4 shore dives.  I think the pictures of the King diving with the original Mr Frogman back in 1992 persuaded us that their operation must be OK. Though they look nothing special from the shore the sites are actually very good, great visibility and plenty of coral and fish life.  The first dive is on a wreck sunk for divers and is particularly good.  At one of the other sites they have sunk a small military tank in 6m which makes an interesting and easy site for snorklers and civers.

Staying here you soon appreciate just how strategic this place is, particularly for the country of Jordan.  This short stretch of coast less than 15km long is Jordan's only coastline.  From our hotel we look out over the sea to Israel and Eqypt.  10km the other way is the Saudi border. 

We end up spending four nights here and take quite a liking to the place.  The atmosphere is relaxed and prices a little cheaper that in the rest of the country.  The weather is good, the sea breeze makes the heat tolerable and there are a number of good places to eat; there is even an English pub called the Rovers Return - which is nothing like an English pub but it does have the World Cup football showing on plasma screens in the bar! 

 

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Arab flag flying at Aqaba
Arab flag flying at Aqaba
Aqaba fortress
Aqaba fortress
Aqaba
photo by: vances