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My turn:

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What I pulled off w/o a tripod: Hold your breath like a sniper and go for a fast shutter.

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If an experience is unwriteable, how about a place? Or how about a place at a specific moment of the day? Far far from a tourist trap, Petra by Night is something everyone has to do at least once in their lives. You take one of the most beautiful places in the world, and you make it more beautiful by seeing it when the sun goes down…and then you add in 1.2km of candlelight and a star-filled night sky.

Petra by Night only happens 3 times a week: Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Since we arrived in a Monday, we were lucky to make this happen. For 12 JOD, and starting at 8:30pm outside the Petra gates, you are led to probably what would become the most memorable 2 hours of your life. The following pictures most likely won’t give you half the idea of what it was like to be there, but I hope the pictures in themselves will fill you with the same sense of awe as I felt a few hours ago.

 

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Driving from Wadi Musa to Petra

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The effects of tourism

After waiting outside, they opened the gates at exactly 8:30pm and off we went!

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and then…after 1.2km of walking and following the lights…

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Literal wonder.

We were then asked to be as silent as possible, as we sat in rows in front of the candles and were offered free tea. Then we were treated to 2 ethereally atmospheric performances of Bedouin music.

 

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and then I looked up…

 

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…can you find the Big Dipper?

 

After the performances and a somewhat cheesy (sorry!) yet rousing speech about what life was like in Petra back when it was the formal capital of the Nabataens (who controlled all of the caravans moving along the Silk Road from here to China), we were left to wander among the candlelights…

 

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Afterwards, we retraced our steps and walked back to the entrance gates. All in all, the entire experience lasted 2 hours.

 

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And with only pictures and our memories to fall back on, not yet ready for sleep, we reflected on what we saw with a bit of shisha and chilled juice at “the oldest bar in the world” at Cave Bar.

 

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Suffice it to say, not any dream tonight will be able to live up to what we just experienced at Petra.