Looking about me as I rode into Amman, Jordan’s capital, I realised the reason why I had been stared at constantly for the past 150 kilometre stretch since the border. It suddenly dawned on me as I navigated my way to a hotel that I rode alone amongst the hundreds of cars about me. I almost missed the usually annoying zippiness of a small bikes pushing their way forward into the heart of the traffic jams. My only cousins on the road happen to be the 250cc white police motorcycles, which gave me some relief, encase my motorcycle gives me grief somewhere within Jordan.
So I was here in Jordan. I had spent two days crossing Syria, a country I had serious doubts I was going to get into. Now I had to organise myself and relax once again. I found a map of Jordan at a local newsstand and circled the places I wanted to visit on it. At the border I had been given a four week visa, but as I was working out the distances I came to realise Jordan wasn’t big enough to fill in a whole month! On top of being such a small country, Jordan was incredibly easy. People spoke English, hotels were all nice and with the added value of being super expensive, I managed to see everything at a leisurely pace and arrive in Aqaba within a week!
As I stopped at the different tourist sites around the country, for the first time other tourist started to take a real interest in the way I travel. Some of these people had previously done overland trips and some were just amazed I rode my motorcycle all the way from Australia. I hadn’t had that much contact with other tourists for most of my trip, it just happened that most of the countries I have travelled through were categorised as ‘Do Not Travel’ by the traveladvisory. Jordan happened to be the first country for me not on that list!
So, while relaxing in the politically stable tourist destination of Jordan, I started my research for Africa. Up until that day, I hadn’t even thought about Africa and where to go, what to see, how to get visas, insurances, petrol and of course locating possible future mechanics. While I had great internet connection in Madaba, and amazing service by the guys at my hotel, who just feed me coffee, tea and food most of the day, I was able to concentrate on my work. When I came to pay just before I left they refused to give me the bill. Thanks guys at Queen Ayola Hotel in Madaba – you’re the best hotel in Jordan!
When I arrived in Aqaba, I booked my tickets on the ferry to Egypt. I drove south of the city to the ferry terminal to confirm where it was so I could find it again in the dark, as I had to be there at 10pm. On my way down there I passed another motorcycle overlander, I quickly waved out to him but he disappointedly kept on going. I found the entrance to the ferry terminal and turned back to the city. I had 8 hours to kill before I had to be back down there, so I found a cafe
with free wifi and sat down with my computer. An hour later Rob, a Dutch motorcycle overlander arrived and we took a coffee together and he invited me back to his camp site where there was another Dutch couple in a campervan also booked on tonight’s ferry. I packed up my laptop and followed Rob to this amazing camping site on the beach. Damn, I thought to myself – I wish I could rest here for a couple of days, but I had to be in Egypt to meet a friend in St Catherine’s on the following day.
For more photos please click here to see them on Flikr!