Jordan: A Cultural and Historic Crossroads

Travel to Jordan, where East meets West, and where you can see the modern Middle East rising amidst ancient sites. We will combine an exploration of the cultural, historical and environmental wonders of Jordan with a visit to King’s Academy, a modern boarding school founded by King Abdullah.

March 3 – 15, 2019

Upon arrival in Jordan, we will depart to see sites of great cultural and historic importance along with visits to Jordan’s beautiful sea resorts. The travel itinerary includes the magnificent ruins in Petra, a Crusader castle, a picnic in the Wadi Rum desert (where Lawrence of Arabia was filmed), resorts on the Gulf of Aqaba and the Dead Sea, the Baptism Site on the Jordan River, an archeological center in the modern capital of Amman, and a community outreach program in East Amman. Students will learn of the rich cultural and religious heritage of this region as well as having the chance to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the desert and seaside; in March it should be warm enough to swim. After traveling, students will spend a few days attending classes and meeting students at King’s Academy, with a few day trips planned to towns of historic and cultural significance, including Madaba, Amman, and Jerash. Students with an interest in learning about this important and unique part of the world will have the opportunity to experience Jordan's remarkable natural beauty and historic wonder.

Throughout the program, we will engage in the following questions:

1) How has modern Jordan emerged from the remnants of its past? What other great civilizations have occupied this region? What evidence exists that establishes this region as a cultural and religious crossroads?

2) What do the excavations at the various historical sites tell us about the importance of this region in the ancient world? What do the careful preservations of these sites tell us about modern Jordan?

3) Why is Jordan one of the most politically and culturally stable countries in the Middle East?

4) How and when was Jordan established? What role did the family of the current king, Abdullah II play in the formation of the modern Middle East?

5) Why did King Abdullah II found and build King’s Academy? What were his objectives? How is Kings Academy similar and different from Lawrenceville in student body, mission, courses and daily activities?

6) What are the current problems facing Jordan related to socioeconomic diversity and its development as a modern nation?

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  • Cost

    $4,500 -  includes all ground transportation, flights, meals, accommodations, visas and all required non-routine vaccines*.  Families will receive a list of what vaccines are required.  

    Please see the Packing List for individual clothing and gear needs.

    The current cost is based on the posted price of flights available at the time of trip planning. There is the potential for this to change. Participants will be alerted to any changes at time of trip sign-ups.

    *All travelers must be up-to-date on routine vaccines.  Families will be charged for any trip related routine vaccines administered on campus.

Sign Up

This trip is recommended for students who have taken courses related to the Middle East, including the Middle East: Myth and History, Islamic Studies, Forces that Shaped the Modern World and/or Arabic; however, other students with demonstrated interest in this region and current events will be considered.

Students should be able to spend a day walking and part of a day hiking. There will also be opportunities to swim.

Participation for all Lawrenceville Harkness Travel Programs is dependent upon a review of student surveys, Housemaster/Advisor recommendations, medical fitness for participation, and financial and disciplinary standing. Seniority and gender balance is also considered in the selection process.

Registering for this program is not considered complete until both of the following items have been submitted:

Know Before You Go

Program Leaders
Cara Hyson, History Master
Mary Calvert, Science Master
Christopher Hyson, English Master

Mandatory Meetings
This group of travelers will meet during second lunch on Mondays every other week, once students have been selected for the program.

Important Travel Program Policies and General Information


Passport Information
All passports must be current seven months past the return date of any School sponsored trip. The passport must contain at least two free pages for potential visa needs. Please check and plan accordingly. 

A photo copy of the passport information page is required for sign-up when the first payment is due.

Vaccine Information
All travelers must be up-to-date on routine vaccines. Families will be charged for any trip related routine vaccines administered on campus.

Families will receive a list of all MANDATORY non-routine vaccines required for this program.  If the participant has received any of the mandatory vaccines, documentation must be provided to the Health & Wellness Center no later than December 14. 

Jordan Packing List

Student Behavioral Expectations and Expulsion Policies
Through House and Harkness, Lawrenceville challenges a diverse community of promising young people to lead lives of learning, integrity, and high purpose.  Our mission is to inspire the best in each to seek the best for all.