Middle eastern adventure

JodieDownUnder Posts: 1,482 admin

Just recently I was lucky enough to embark on a Middle East adventure. Turkey, Egypt, Jordan & Israel. What a trip, lots of firsts. History, religion, food, people & landscapes, we had it all. We only scratched the surface but a lifetime of memories. The Grand Bazaar, Haggis Sophia & the thriving city of Istanbul, Ephesus the ancient city, the Pyramids & Sphinx of Cairo, cruising on the Nile & hot air ballooning near Luxor, Petra in Jordan & Jerusalem & Bethlehem in Israel & Palestine. Travelling to new places makes me appreciate home & the lucky country where I live. The freedoms I take for granted & the lifestyle I have lived. Here are a few pics of my travels.


  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,316 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Wow! I would love to go someday! I bet that was a wonderful experience! A trip of a lifetime!

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,361 admin

    Thank you for the fantastic pictures! I'm glad your trip went well. It look like it was a lot of fun!

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,019 ✭✭✭✭✭

    How exciting! all the sites and history, and those markets...oh my. I would be in heaven with all those spices available.

  • Merin Porter
    Merin Porter Posts: 1,026 admin

    Oh my goodness -- AMAZING!!!

  • gardneto76
    gardneto76 Posts: 528 ✭✭✭✭

    Stuningly beautiful sites & pictures! Glad you had fun & looking forward to more stories from your adventures.

  • JodieDownUnder
    JodieDownUnder Posts: 1,482 admin

    It was amazing to see the resourcefulness of some of the farmers in some of these countries. Take Egypt, 110,000,000 people live there but only on 6% of the land!!! That puts a lot of pressure on the floodplains of the Nile. Sometimes the productive land stretches out for a bit, other times quite narrow but every space was utilised. We saw banana trees growing in conjunction with lucerne (alfalfa) which is mostly harvested by scythe to feed working animals such as donkeys, camels & horses. Small paddocks crammed with wheat, next to rows of cabbages, tomatoes or lettuce etc. Fruit trees with broad beans growing around them.

    The markets were so vibrant & alive with beautiful fresh produce, fish, meat, herbs & vegetables. It must have been strawberry season while we were there, I’ve never seen so many! And pomegranates everywhere, they make fresh orange & pomegranate juice to sell on the streets but my favourite was lemon & mint, so refreshing. The tomatoes, eggplant, garlic & onions were to die for.

    We visited a “perfumery” basically essential oils & I managed to get them home without fuss. I’m especially keen on the Black Cumin oil I purchased, I think it will be a nice addition to the face cream or oil blend I make for night time use. I also purchased Lotus flower oil, which has a lovely subtle scent for massage or bath oil.

    We were especially keen to eat local, authentic food on our adventure & the different guides we had pointed us in the right direction. Freshly made flat bread is especially popular & then you can do so much with it. Use it to dip into baba ganoush, hummus, okra dip or use it to wrap up meat & salad. Lots of fresh salads with mint, lemon juice & olive oil. Beautiful zataar, dried mixture of herbs that goes well with oil & bread. Lots of rice & lentils done many different ways. It definitely was a culinary experience & I’m keen to improve my falafel skills.

    We felt extremely safe & people were friendly and most of the market vendors were keen to sell us something we didn’t really need. They actually said that which made us laugh & if we said no thank you, they would say, “maybe later or maybe tomorrow” they were keen to do business but not too pushy.

    It was a wonderful experience, with memories to last a lifetime. I finally got to see the Pyramids, a lifelong dream & Petra in Jordan & Ephesus in Turkey were mind blowing.

    The food in this traditional Jordanian restaurant in Wadi Musa was a highlight.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,361 admin

    That bottom dish looks absolutely tasty!

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Posts: 1,411 admin

    @JodieDownUnder what an experience! So many countries and cultures in one go! And all these oriental spices, foods, colours. I hope your stomachs agreed to what you tasted.

    I am not surprised that you enjoy getting back home after all this busy world. When we go to any of these countries, we are always happy to return to our quiet and peaceful part of the world.

  • nicksamanda11
    nicksamanda11 Posts: 721 ✭✭✭✭

    I would like to be instantly transported to all those joyful pictures😍

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,088 ✭✭✭✭

    @JodieDownUnder Thanks for your posting! My Dad loved his trips there! You brought back so many special memories of him talking and showing pictures. My mom brought back the souvenirs! lol

    I have never gone, but would love to!

  • Marjory Wildcraft
    Marjory Wildcraft Posts: 1,584 admin

    Wow! Such beautiful photos. Thanks so much for posting. I've never been to that part of the world. Beautiful

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,507 admin

    @JodieDownUnder You've been to some amazing places! I would be spending most of my time in the markets inhaling all the wonderful scents and trying to decide which ones I'd be able to bring home.

    I've never had Jordanian food before. It looks very good. The type of dishes that make you want bread to sup up all the spectacular juices!

  • JodieDownUnder
    JodieDownUnder Posts: 1,482 admin

    @Torey yes the bread is amazing. We ate at the same restaurant 2 nights in a row in Jordan because the food was that good. They basically made the flat bread in front of you & it spent 20 seconds from the oven to our table. 1 large flatbread between 2, good for the hummus, baba ganoush etc & then to clean up the plate towards the end. The mushrooms, onions & spices on the hummus was divine.

    I did manage to get saffron, a winter tea blend & essential oils home without any problems. I was so tempted to bring so much more home but I would have cried if customs has been tough. So I was cautious. The trip was amazing.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,361 admin
    edited April 11

    @JodieDownUnder  I think you are our world travelling tour guide!

  • JodieDownUnder
    JodieDownUnder Posts: 1,482 admin

    @LaurieLovesLearning that’s a very agreeable job description! Seems I have the bug, off to Tanzania & Zanzibar in August.

    RICHARD Posts: 22 ✭✭✭

    @JodieDownUnder I fondly recall the food from the Eastern Mediterranean countries when I traveled there 45 years ago. The spice palettes combined with the freshest foods were delicious. I still use many of them today, especially for lamb and fish. The coffee was either incredible or Nescafe! Your pictures recalled for me a pleasant set of memories. Thank you.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,361 admin

    Wow, @JodieDownUnder! Yeah...you've got the bug all right. I'll have to just live through your posts & pictures. Traveling the world is my dream.

    Keep touring! 🤗

  • JodieDownUnder
    JodieDownUnder Posts: 1,482 admin

    @RICHARD absolute pleasure. Yep coffee was hit & miss, some your spoon would stand by itself or otherwise is was weak & watery but the tea was to die for, hibiscus, apple, mint & various others. I need to improve my falafel skills, we did eat lots of very nice falafel. Very tender lamb with hummus, pomegranate, okra, bread & simple salads with lovely flavour combinations. Mostly vegetarian though which suited me fine. Oh and the baklava!!

    and welcome to TGN, lovely to have you here.

  • tmleytham
    tmleytham Posts: 1 ✭✭✭

    Just amazing, what an adventure! Gives me inspiration to plan to travel.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,507 admin

    Welcome to TGN's forum @tmleytham.

    Please check out the Introductions section and let us know where in the world you are from.