After we had found a viable venue, we moved up to Amman for some final meetings and so we didn’t have to drive the extra hour for the 3 am flight to Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
When doing an international event, I like to take some of the attendees on a day trip tour of the city the event is being held in. It adds to the entire experience and is a good way to showcase the country we are in. Jordan has some incredible sites that I would love to take attendees to see, including Petra. But Petra is too far away from the Dead Sea to be a viable day trip option. So we looked at closer sites. Amman is nestled in a valley surrounded by a number of sites that are perfect for day trips.
Once we had finished our meetings in Amman, we arranged to go on a tour of Madaba and Mt Nebo so we could get an idea of what our attendees would be in for. I really like to test things out before I make a final decision (I am somewhat of a control freak). Madaba is home to several churches which have some of the oldest mosaics in the world. We first went to St. George’s church to see the mosaic map of the Holy Land. The mosaic covers the entire floor of the church. There were mosaics hanging on the walls, some of which were very old.
Our driver took us to this amazing little restaurant for lunch, Haret Jdoudna. The views were amazing and it was honestly the best hummus I have ever had. We told the staff that I needed gluten free food, so they brought me a separate plate of mixed grill that had not been cooked on pita bread, it was great! There is a drink in Jordan and Abu Dhabi that I have never had anywhere else, Lemon & Mint. Now that I have had it in both countries, I have to say it is MUCH better in Jordan. Its lemon juice, mint leaves, sugar and ice all blended together. Because of the produce from the Jordan River Valley, the Lemon & Mint in Jordan is so refreshing! Definitely something you can’t miss!
We then went to the Apostle’s Church. This church and the mosaics covering the floor date back to the 6th century. When you purchase you’re admission ticket, the man at the church will go inside with you and show you the mosaics. The church is open air so sand and dirt settle on the mosaics and they are harder to see. The guide takes a spray bottle and mists parts of the mosaics with water so you can see them better. The colors in these mosaics are all natural!