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Dead Sea Factories
There are two land crossing-points between Israel and Jordan, Buses from Tel Aviv, Haifa and Nazareth run through to Irbid and Amman via the the Sheikh Hussein Bridge (Mon- Thurs & Sun 6:30am-10pm, Fri & Sat 8am-8pm), located near the northern Israeli town of Bet She'an, where a hefty Israeli departure tax, currently NIS56, is levied.
From Tel Aviv, bus #333 departs from the fourth floor of the Central Bus Station (Mon-Fri & Sun 2:30pm; NIS70 or US$20) From Haifa, departures are from a hut outside the Merkaz train station (Mon-Fri & Sun 730am & 230pm; NIS53 or US$15; Tel:04/862-4871), also picking up from the offices of Nazarin Tours on Paul VI Street in Lower Nazareth (same days 8.30am & 330pm, also Sat 330pm; NIS53 or US$15; Tel:06/601-0458). All these buses drop off in Irbid at the office of the Trust International Transport Company near Sports City, and terminate at the Trust office in Amman next to the Royal Jordanian building off 7th Circle.
The other crossing-point from Israel is in the south, between the Red Sea resort towns of Eilat and Aqaba, known as the Arava crossing (Mon- Thurs & Sun 6.30am-10pm, Fri & Sat an 8am-8pm) From Eilat Central Bus Station, take city bus #16 (NIS4) or simply walk 2km to the border. If you're arriving from Jerusalem or Tel Aviv to and want to avoid Eilat town, ask to be dropped off on the highway at the border turnoff. There's a NIS56 Israeli departure tax. Once you're through the formalities, services do the five-kilometer run in\ into central Aqaba for JD1 per person.
It can save a great deal of time to fly from Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport to Amman (no flights Sat), and this also offers the extra lure of flying low over superb scenery. Choose between Royal Jordanian (Tel: 03/516-5566) and El AI (Tel: 03/9722333) Prices on either are US$80 one-way, US$135 for a one-month return, US$160 for a year's open return. All flights take about thirty minutes to reach Queen Alia Airport, south of Amman, although one RJ flight continues to Marka Airport near Amman's downtown.
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