Mount Kilimanjaro Defeats Jordanian Princess

Mount Kilimanjaro
It looks like money and privilege can’t buy everything.

Princess Sarah Princess Sara bint Al Faisal of Jordan, niece of King Abdullah II, failed to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, the Tanzania Daily News reports.

The 18-year-old princess tried to scale the famous mountain last weekend with a large entourage of assistants and Jordanian international students. She reached the Kibo point at 4,700 meters (15,420 feet) but developed altitude sickness. Doctors climbing with her advised her to descend instead of attempting to reach the mountain’s highest summit, Uhuru point at 5,895 meters (19,341 feet).

Symptoms of altitude sickness include headaches, dizziness, shortness of breath, rapid pulse and more. For full coverage see this PDF document. To prevent altitude sickness, it’s best to ascend in stages, staying overnight at an intermediate altitude to give the body time to adapt. The only cure of altitude sickness is to descend to a lower altitude, which should be done immediately.

It’s difficult to predict who will get altitude sickness. When I climbed to similar elevations in the Himalayas the only symptom I noticed was a need for more breaks. On the other hand, a couple of other trekkers who looked far more fit than I was got very sick and had to descend.

The princess hoped to get a certificate of achievement for scaling the mountain. Only three of her party made it to Uhuru Point and got the certificate. She said that she enjoyed her trip to Tanzania and would try to climb the mountain again.

[Photo courtesy Muhammad Mahdi Karim]

Photo Of The Day: The Treasury At Petra

“Indiana Jones would be proud,” wrote Instagram user shuotography in the caption for today’s Photo of the Day. Yes, we think he would. Taken at the Treasury in the ancient city of Petra, Jordan, this photo was enhanced with Instagram’s “Lo-Fi” filter, which adds shadows and makes colors richer. While no one knows for certain, the Treasury, known in Arabic as al-Khazneh, is believed to have been a temple or royal tomb. Definitely Indiana-esque.Do you have any great adventure travel photos? You now have two options to enter your snapshots into the running for Gadling’s Photo of the Day. Upload your shots to the Gadling Flickr Pool, or mention @GadlingTravel and use hashtag #gadling in the caption or comments for your post on Instagram. Don’t forget to give us a follow too!

[Photo Credit: Instagram user shuotography]

Archaeologists Discover Key To An Ancient City’s Wealth

archaeologists, Petra, Jordan
A couple of months ago we reported on how archaeologists discovered how the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria thrived in the desert. A complex system of canals and cisterns trapped the sparse but regular rainfall.

Residents of another ancient city, Petra in Jordan, appear to have taken advantage of desert water to support their civilization too. Jordanian and Dutch archaeologists have discovered that an area 15 kilometers east of the city used to be a large oasis. The ancients tapped into it with an extensive network of aqueducts, reservoirs and underground canals cut out of the rock to water their fields.

Petra, capital of the Nabatean Kingdom, was a major trading center in the deserts of what is now Jordan and grew rich off of trading luxury items such as frankincense and myrrh.

The Udhruh Archaeological Project, named after the site, has found evidence that the irrigation system dates back at least 2,000 years. The area was in use for several centuries and the team has also found what may be the best-preserved Roman fort in the world. You can take a virtual tour of that fort here. The tour will show you not only the fort, but also a Byzantine church and a satellite view of the entire site.

[Photo of Petra courtesy Chris Yunker]

12 Stunning Desert Landscapes Around The World

camels There are many beautiful landscapes to be seen all over the world. Sparkling oceans, lush flora, tall mountains, barren tundra and unique rock formations cover the Earth, giving contrast to its many destinations. One of the most interesting types of scenery to take in, however, is the desert.

While many automatically think of sandy, infertile, colorless areas of land, there are actually many vibrant and unique desert landscapes to be visited. Vast expanses of salt plains in Bolivia, curvaceous sand dunes in Jordan, enormous rock pinnacles in Australia and unworldly vegetation in Yemen make up some of the planet’s must-see deserts. For a more visual experience, check out the gallery below.

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[images via Big Stock]

7 Great Hotels Where You Can Cook Like a Local

cooking classes cabo san lucas capella pedregalOne of the best parts about a vacation? The food. We love trying local delicacies and adding to our recipe books with tips and techniques learned from our travels. Immerse yourself in native cuisine with these seven great cooking experiences that combine luxury travel with fun, hands-on cooking classes.

Time to Thai in Bangkok
Learn traditional Thai cooking in Bangkok at Lebua. You’ll cook a five-course meal with a Thai chef in this three-hour class taught in both English and Thai for the exceptionally affordable rate of $160 per person. Combine it with an overnight at this all-suite luxury property for a true one-of-a-kind experience.

Game & Guinness in Ireland
Fish for wild trout and learn to make homemade chowder at the Guinness family’s 18th C estate-turned-hotel in Cong, Ireland.

Green Gardening in Jordan
Garden alongside locals at the bio-garden at Radisson Blu Tala Bay Resort in Aqaba Jordan, then learn to cook traditional Jordan dishes like Mansaff (roast lamb in a saffron yogurt sauce) using the fruits of your labor.

Shopping and Tapas in Barcelona
Shop Barcelona’s legendary Boqueria with Spanish Chef Roberto Holz, then prepare a Mediterranean lunch at Hotel Arts Barcelona.

Surf n’ Seafood in Nevis
Dive and dine” for your own spiny lobster at Four Seasons Nevis, then prepare it at a traditional Caribbean barbecue.

Food Safari in Australia
Discovery the bounty of Australia’s Kangaroo Island at Southern Ocean Lodge. The hotel hosts an annual KI Food Safari. Activities during the six-day journey will include hands-on classes with the island’s purveyors, who operate on a mostly small scale, sustainable and personal basis while tasting the unique products straight from the source.

Say Olé in Mexico
Learn the secrets behind perfect salsa, ceviche and more at one or three-day cooking classes (shown in the photo, above) at the luxurious Capella Pedregal in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. We’d suggest the three-day class – it includes a trip to a local farmers market.