(Duration: three hours, one day or one-day-and-one-night)
There is much debate about T E Lawrence's role in the Great Arab Revolt during the First World
War. What is beyond dispute is the importance of his legend and his book 'Seven Pillars of
Wisdom" in bringing global attention to Wadi Rum, as well as the 1962 Lawrence of Arabia film,
much of it shot here. But be careful! Many features named after him have little to do with him.
The mountain at the entrance to Wadi Rum itself is called Seven Pillars of Wisdom (with
imagination you can count all seven). It was named after the book, not the other way round!
There is no evidence that Lawrence ever slept at Lawrence's house, though he may have done so
and without doubt the view from there makes it an essential stopping point.
Certainly Lawrence sheltered in Rum, while attacking the Turkish forces using the Hijjaz railway
after his capture of the port of Aqaba and before taking Damascus in 1918. Rum provided fresh,
sweet water for the Arab armies and Lawrence describes in detail his discovery of the spring at Al
Shallaleh, a 20 minute scramble above the Nabatean Temple in Rum village.
Most Bedouin guides do not walk you to this spring but take an easy drive elsewhere and stay in
their vehicles. Saleh will show you both and also the rock circle marking what is known (again
with little proof) as Lawrence's well. If you are a Lawrence expert you will know much more than
Saleh; and he will take you where you want. If not he will guide you round Lawrence's Rum, pass
on the stories that have been passed on to him and help you seek the truth and experience
'Rum's glory' as Lawrence knew and chronicled it in such memorable language: "this
processional way greater than imagination. . .[the walls] in crags like gigantic buildings."