Our third day in Jordan started off more smoothly than the previous day. Our first stop was Bethany Beyond the Jordan. This is thought to be the sight of Jesus’ baptism. The location has been “proven” by numerous historians and religious scholars, but it is not without controversy. That however, isn’t really the point to me. Jordan and the region all around it is steeped in social and religious history, just being within the vicinity of that kind of history is amazing. (Side note–I see that WP has changed the photo display style, if you’d like to read the photo caption just hover over it).
After seeing the Jordanian site we walked a bit farther to where you can actually touch the Jordan River. On the opposite side of the river bank is Israel and this location is (according to our guide) where Israel believes Jesus was baptized. So lucky me, I got to see both sites…one of them has to be the correct one, right?
After this we drove up to the top of Mt. Nebo. It is believed that this is where Moses was shown the view of the “Promised Land”, it is also possible that Moses is buried here. Again, like many of these sights, this is contested information. But, from this site you can get a good view of the Dead Sea, Jerusalem (on a clear day), Jericho and the Jordan River Valley. It was such an amazing trip, the weather was perfect the company was good and the Jordanians I met were overwhelmingly friendly.Afterwards we headed to the Dead Sea. As a swimmer and lover of water the trip to the Dead Sea was nearly a religious experience for me! I have never experienced anything like it. The water is so full of salt that you can actually see it. In fact, it looks like someone had a little too much suntan oil on and decided to rinse off in the sea.You can sit upright and when you try to move the water forces you toward your center of gravity. It was strange and amazing at the same time. However, be warned, do not get the water in your mouth, eyes, or any open wounds! We went to a private beach at the Hilton Hotel, floated for a bit, and then enjoyed a very nice lunch buffet.