After our epic adventure in Petra, my boyfriend and I needed some time to relax. We headed out of Wadi Musa in the afternoon and drove back up the King’s Highway to the town of Tafila. From there we headed out to the Dead Sea on one of the most beautiful roads in the country.
We wound through solitary golden mountains, taking each tight turn as slowly as possible so that we could savor the views. Slowly we descended into a startlingly green valley and arrived in the town of Fifa on the Dead Sea Highway. From there we made our way north to the sea.
When we arrived, there was a thick haze hovering over the valley and it made the whole body of water appear as a desert mirage. The sun was setting as we pulled alongside the impossibly still, impossibly salty blue mass, and we drove with one eye on the road and the other on the hazy sunset.
Our final destination in Jordan was Ma’in, a collection of hot springs and waterfalls between the Dead Sea and Madaba, the mosaic city we visited on our first day in the country. The newest addition to Ma’in was our hotel, the Evason Ma’in and Six Senses Spa, which had opened not long before our visit. After a gruelling day of hiking under the baking sun of Petra, waterfall hot springs and a massage could not have sounded sweeter.
It was dusk by the time we checked into our hotel, but we couldn’t resist a dip in the steamy pools beneath the waterfalls. Peeling our dirt-covered clothing off and donning our swimsuits, we headed to the springs for some hot hydrotherapy.
Hot was an understatement. The water was scalding. We kept dipping our feet in the pool to try to adjust them to the temperature, but had to pull them back out again after a few seconds. Finally the attendant came up to us and laughingly showed us a way to climb over to the falls, which were a good ten degrees cooler than the rest of the water. We spent the next half hour relaxing in the darkness under the warm springs.
The next morning we headed to the swimming pool at the hotel for a few hours of leisurely reading and an unintentionally huge lunch at the pool bar.
In the afternoon we headed down to the Dead Sea to take a swim. Just as everyone had warned us, the Dead Sea was the most bizarre aquatic experience we had ever had. The salinity of the water meant that we were so buoyant we could barely move. Floating on our backs with our feet in the air was the only comfortable position, although we didn’t let that stop us from trying to swim or put our feet on the ground. It was no use. We found that swimming becomes very difficult when you can’t immerse yourself in water, and keeping one’s feet on the ground is tough when they keep popping back up again.
We spent more time at the Dead Sea than we had anticipated, and drove back to our hotel as fast as we could in order to be on time for our massage appointments. We wound up the hairpin turns to the top of the mountain as quickly as our car would take us and then back down the unimaginably steep road to our hotel. We were late, but not too late.
Our massages were great, if not a bit too short. Afterwards we took a dip in the spa pool, complete with its own waterfall. While we soaked, we enjoyed mango sorbet and ginger tea that the staff brought out to us. It was pure bliss.
As we were leaving, the receptionist at the spa offered us complimentary foot massages since our massages had to be cut short. It was very generous of him to offer, especially since it was completely our fault that we arrived late for our treatments.
Massages completed, we floated back to the hotel for an al fresco dinner in front of the waterfalls. It could not have been more relaxing. We went to bed that night wishing we had another day to enjoy the springs, the spa, and the sea.
As we drove back through the mountains the next morning, up to Madaba, and out to the Amman airport, I flipped through my guidebook to remind myself of all that we had seen on our trip. Unfortunately, I was also reminded of all that we didn’t have time to see. As if I really needed an excuse to start planning another trip to Jordan…