The Authentic Side of Aqaba

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Aqaba is located at the southern edge of Jordan, on the sunny shores of the Red Sea.

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The country is bordered by Israel in the West, Saudi Arabia and Iraq in the East and Syria up North. From the Gulf of Aqaba you can clearly see four countries from one spot – Jordan, Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia – mountaineous terrain ominously rising from the sea all around you in a million shades of sand.

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I saw some eyebrows raised when I told people I would be going to Jordan. I guess it’s understandable. The region has been under unfortunate upheaval for far too long, but luckily Jordan has remained mostly safe so far. Instead of danger and doom I found a beautiful land with an amazingly kind people and a refreshingly authentic atmosphere.

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A wide selection of exotic spices at Aqaba’s spice souk

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Local fashions on the corner of Al Faris Street and Baghdad Street

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There is a strange beauty to the gritty scenery of Aqaba

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The beach is a popular hangout spot for locals of all ages

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Aqaba has an amazing selection of Middle Eastern street food

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Aqaba Castle is in ruins now, but it’s definitely worth exploring

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Jordanian food is incredibly delicious, and Jordanians really love to eat!

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Aqaba has several 5 star hotels with lavish pool areas and beach clubs – luxurious getaways from the city streets

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aqaba jordan
aqaba jordanaqaba jordanThe delightfully colorful Aqaba is a heartfelt and welcoming city. The city has very little in way of actual tourist sights, but it does have fantastic restaurants and beautiful beaches.

The city is surprisingly verdant, like an oasis surrounded by sand, but as soon as you go beyond the city limits you will be greeted with vast deserts, inhabited only by camels, goats and a small number of bedouins.

For all its earnest authenticity, the most authentic Jordan is still waiting beyond Aqaba.

 

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