For me, Wadi Rum cannot be compared to other desert places; Bedouin tribes still live here among the mountains of the Rum. Its molten sandstone rock is composed in undulating formations, smoothed away by centuries of windstorms leaving deep rose-colored sand.
In 1998, Wadi Rum was established as a protected area covering 720 square kilometers. To get here, we flew from Amman to Aqaba, and then we took an hour taxi ride to the tourist center in Wadi Rum. There we bought our entrance ticket, which costed 5JD each, and met our guide. A portion of this fee is shared with local communities and also goes toward the protection of the reserve.
To see the reserve, we did a jeep/hiking/trekking tour. We spent two nights out in a desert Bedouin camp situated in the protected area in the valley of Abu Hassaran. Our two days were spent walking in Barragh Canyon, seeing Lawrence’s house, and hiking two hours up the ridge to the summit of Jebel Khash. From here we had magnificent views, north to the Wadi Rum desert and south as far as the Saudi border. We dined on simple food, which included delicious earth-baked chicken and vegetables for dinner. It was a comfortable stay in black goat-hair tents. There were bathroom facilities and showers, but make no mistake, it's camping...you go to a place like this to forget about the present, to take in a place that thankfully has not changed.