Monday, 14 January 2013

jordan day 2: ancient greco-roman provincial city of gerasa

the last item on our itinerary for the day was the ancient ruins of gerasa in jerash. actually it was already 2pm when we arrived there and was supposed to have our lunch first, but as the skies were really dark and gloomy, our driver thought maybe it was better for us to finish touring here first before going for our lunch as he feared we'd have to miss this site if it rained.

however it did rained, even before we went in but we still waited around for the rain to subside, since were there already.

 started our tour from here, the outer south gate, which is about 5 minutes walk from the ancient town centre of gerasa.

started to pour again... not good! 

the colonnade (sequence of columns) at the oval forum, a trademark in many roman cities. the oval forum functioned as a marketplace as well as gathering place of great social significance, and often the scene of diverse activities, including political discussions and debates, rendezvous, meetings etc.

 cardo maximus, or main street, that normally runs through the city and lined with shops and vendors.

corinthian columns... all the roman columns were made up of sections and were never one whole long piece of  stone.

if you stuck a key between the sections in a column, the key will move up and down, especially when there's a wind blowing. this explains how some of the structures were able to withstand the wind, rain, the flow of time and even earthquakes. 

at the north theatre... the guy in red behind there is our guide for gerasa.

it's a big complex and lotsa walking involved! (i know gina will be commenting about how tiring my trips are! :P) here, we're walking up to the temple of artemis, where the columns are.

the ruins of temple of artemis.

ruins of a church.

original mosaics on the floor of the church.

walking towards the south theatre.

bagpipers entertaining the visitors at the theatre.

view of the oval forum from the top.

some original stones on display.

this was how the original temple of artemis looked like.

back at the south gate

by this time, we were famished! we were practically begging our driver to bring us for our lunch, at nearly 5pm! more like dinner, huh? so he brought us to this arabic restaurant some minutes' drive away.

oven baked arabic bread. 

typical arabic bread. 

 hummus, a kind of dip for the arabic bread, made from chickpeas.

tabouleh, also eaten with arabic bread, made from parsley, couscous etc. 

fatoush, a kind of arabic salad. very yummy! 

arabic pickles... very salty, but appetizing. 

the main, a combo of grilled meat. of course this wasn't mine. i asked for only chicken meat... :P this meal came up to JD10 (≈ RM43) per person.

when we got back to amman, our driver asked if we want to have some desserts. since it was quite early, we said ok. so he brought us to this famous sweets shop, habibah sweets

the lower floor is the shop part, where they sell arabic sweets, baklavas etc by the kg.

the upper level is the restaurant part, with waiters in vests and all. 

this was what our driver recommended we order, hot and cold kunafa. it's cheesy and very sweet! to be honest, too sweet for us, so we were having some trouble finishing it. i forgot how much we paid for this... probably JD2 (≈ RM8.50)

after stuffing ourselves with kunafa, we went to this souvenir shop next door. it's a shop targeting tourists and we're sure the prices were marked up like crazy. so we didn't buy anything, other than a cake of dead sea mud soap.

even tho' jordan is a muslim country with about 90% of their population are muslims, but given their jewish and christianity origins, we often see these paraphernalia sold in shop run by local muslims. this is definitely something we'll never see back home!

it was a long and tiring day, so we retired quite early that night.


Biow said...

woah.. really must travel whilst young and fit..

looks so tiring..

stargal said...

yeah... really have to be fit. if not, we'll tend to give a lot of places a miss, esp those that involve climbing...