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“Horrible Experience-Animal Abuse”

Petra World Heritage Site
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Petra by Night Tour Ticket
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Owner description: A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Petra (ancient capital city of the Nabataean people) recently proclaimed as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Horrible Experience-Animal Abuse”
Reviewed June 23, 2013

Yes, the architecture of the Nabaeteans is awesome and the desert sandstone backdrop amazing. But the experience of walking the Siq to the Treasury and King's Tombs is absolutely horrible. Every ten seconds out of your 3+ hour or so walking experience you are accosted by a rampaging Bedouin with an abused horse or donkey (and a few camels) and the screaming of 10 year old boys as they race the poor animals up and down continuously while beating the animals mercilessly. And this is against the backdrop of metal cart wheels clacking over the pavement walkway as other animals quickly pull fat tourists in carts up and down the Siq. Constant noise and having to move out of the way of senseless Bedouins every 10 seconds means that one has no way to walk, view and enjoy the sites and beauty of the place. The worst is seeing the way the animals are whipped by young boys who yell and scream constantly -- this is no exaggeration. The animal mistreatment is already well recognized as there is a large sign on the right side of the walk as you exit near the horse stalls that states "report mistreatment' and gives a web address and Minister of Tourism address. Yeah, like that is going to make a difference. The number of Bedouins and animals allowed should be drastically reduced - by about 90% on any particular day, and their treatment closely monitored. It is so obvious that these people know perfectly well that at the prices they charge they can work an animal to death, starve it, and simply and easily replace it to continue exhorting an ignorant populace of visitors. Had I known, I would have never paid the Kingdom of Jordan $55 for an entry visa plus the $200.00 per person or so it cost our tour to visit this place. UNESCO should be ashamed. Anyone who can't make the walk and instead uses the animals should be ashamed. The Bedouins need educating and alternative income sources, and the government of Jordan needs to undertake this.

Visited June 2013
22 Thank Linda L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Southern New Jersey
Level Contributor
196 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
“Not to be missed”
Reviewed June 22, 2013

Petra is one of the most amazing archaeological sites I have had the privilege of visiting. It is not to be missed! I felt I had stepped into the movie set for Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, but then this is where the ending was filmed. Before Petra was developed as a World Heritage site, a Bedouin tribe made its home here, living in the ancient caves of Petra. As part of the development of the site for tourists, the Bedouins were moved out of the area of the ruins to a newly constructed village. Our guide told us that part of the deal was that tribal members are allowed to maintain souvenir stands, snack bars and animal rides within the site. A carriage ride in and out, to the Treasury is included with your ticket, but a tip is expected at the end of the the ride. You will constantly be asked if you want a donkey ride, but we found the offers to be polite and good humored. At the end of the gorge is a large, clean restaurant managed by Crowne Plaza which has a nice buffet. There were modern bathrooms spotted half way in and by the restaurant, at the end. At the halfway WC, the author of I Married a Bedouin (Margarite de Geldermalsen) has a jewelry stand where she sells jewelry and other items crafted by local Bedouin women. She'll also sell you her book, or you can buy it from Amazon or download it to your Kindle before you leave.

After lunch at the Crowne Plaza restaurant, after a long, hot day of trekking through the ruins with a bit of climbing thrown in, we were glad to have a donkey ride back to the Treasury. It was just more of the adventure. But be sure to negotiate price in advance. My only regret is that we decided to walk the rest of the way from the Treasury to the entrance rather than taking the carriage ride out. The hike out seemed far longer than it had been coming in.

As you exit to the main road, right across the street is the Moevenpick Hotel. After a long, hot, dusty, though amazing day in the ruins of Petra, there is nothing like a delicious ice cream cone from the ice cream shop at the Moevenpick Hotel. They even have an outdoor window and seating in the shade of their patio. The quality of the ice cream is superb and they have free wifi for texting home on Viber to let the folks at home know what a great time you're having.

Visited May 2013
2 Thank Niamb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dunedin, New Zealand
Level Contributor
25 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed June 20, 2013

A dream come true, better than expected, better than any amount of research can portray.
in a country where manners, graciousness and charm excels you are continually badgered by these young people. As an elderly solo traveller I was an easy target,I wanted to take my time, to walk, to enjoy. I also was appalled by the animal abuse, surly Petra is not immune from the control of the authorities? Maybe their beloved King can hear about this terrible side of Jordon that the visitor sees.

Visited June 2013
2 Thank margaretinnz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Petra- animal abuse”
Reviewed June 17, 2013

I have just come back from a work trip in Jordan and visted Petra. While the site itself is beautiful, overwhelming and soaked in History, the 3 hours I spent there was completely distracted by the horrible, horrible animal abuse I witnessed. I saw a child kick and push a donkey over, another child lead a donkey into a corner and kicked, attacked and threw rocks at it's face. I tried to stop him which seemed to make him do it more. I told one of the older people and the Police who didn't care. The horses were in awful condition,one was eating dust from the ground. The donkeys noses had cuts and ridges where the chains cut into their noses. It was shameful to see so many fat Americans riding on the poor suffering animals. I really didn't expect to find my time there so upsetting. We made a statement as we left but I'm certain nothing will come of it.

Visited June 2013
10 Thank Shennapop
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Redcliffe Queensland
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
“Petra visit with Ramses Tours”
Reviewed June 14, 2013

We booked the Petra and Wadi Rum tour through Ramses Tours for a visit on the 8th May.

Ramses were very good with their written communication and tour details before departing for our holiday and also arranged for us to pay the total amount of the tour prior to departing Australia. We didn't want to carry large amounts of money around whilst travelling.

Petra is an amazing place and one that must be visited in a life time.

Our tour guide from Ramses Tours was very knowledgeable and professional. He was also very considerate of my husband's back problems and maintained a pace that was adequate for him throughout the day....also arranging for a horse and cart to take him back out of Petra.

Petra was a highlight of our holiday. Once at the Treasury our tour guide offered to take us higher up to the Monastery and tombs, which, initially very hesitant, we agreed to go. The additional assistance that our guide offered to enable us to climb to the higher points was well worth the efforts. It provided us with another view of Petra that others do not experience. My husband unfortunately was unable to join us for that part of the walk. The seven of us were overawed by the experience and we thank our guide for encouraging us to go.

The only negative comment is that our guide was unaware that Wadi Rum was also part of our tour - which was paid for prior to departing Australia. This was obviously a break down in communication between Management of your company and our guide, who had to rearrange our time in Petra and also our lunch schedule to allow sufficient time to visit the Wadi Rum.

I think we may have been left with the last of the four wheel drives... as the car had no shade and was lacking in any form of comfort. A big thanks to our guide who managed to rearrange times to get us to the Wadi Rum for 1.5 hours - to at least experience the wonder - and then transfer us back to the ship in time. We would recommend this knowledgeable, friendly and professional guide to anyone visiting Petra. Unfortunately I cannot remember our guides name.

Visited May 2013
Thank mikntrees
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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