Being a tourist in Jordan
Before getting into the details of the itinerary, I wanted to address an important point about being a tourist in Jordan. I know that at the moment this region of the world is unstable and that a trip to the Syrian border may not be very tempting. Jordan is a BEAUTIFUL country and it was honestly one of my favourite trips ever. We never felt in danger during our stay and Jordanians are the nicest people, so if/or when you can, please consider visiting, you will not regret it!
Ok, safety disclaimer done! Now on to the trip itself!
Jordan is a 4-5 hours flight from Western Europe. Most international flights land in Amman, where you can start your trip.
In our case, we decided to start our trip south of the country and after landing in the early evening we rented a car for the week. Note that driving in Jordan is not considered very safe. Jordanians have a particular driving style that can be scary for most. If you are not a confident driver I would advise you look at alternative ways to visit the country. There are a lot of tourist bus tours and taxis available.
We headed south to Aqaba which is about 3-4 hours drive and had dinner at the Movenpick resort where we stayed for three nights.
Day 2 & 3
Spend the first couple of days relaxing on the shores of the Red Sea. You can enjoy snorkelling, scuba-diving and jet-skiing. The water is absolutely beautiful there, it is the deepest indigo hue and it has a fantastic sea-life.
I had one of the most amazing experience on the Red Sea, jet-skiing followed by a huge group of flying fish!
Day 2 & 3
Enjoy another day by the sea before starting the adventure part of the trip in the desert!
After 2 days swimming, tanning, and sleeping, start the road trip north with a first stop in Wadi Rum. You can park your car at the National Park entrance. We booked our desert safari with Classic Wadi Rum Tours. Wadi Rum's locals and guides are all Bedouins, and it is amazing to see how they live and learn about their culture!
You have multiple options to explore Wadi Rum, we opted for a morning camel ride, followed by a 4x4 afternoon exploration.
Having lunch sitting on the floor of a Bedouins' tent with a panoramic view of the desert is surreal. The locals are so generous and will always offer you tea and sometimes their bed for a little post-lunch nap.
Absorb all the beauty of Wadi Rum. The place has been used as inspiration for multiple movies and you can really understand why. While driving through canyons and between dunes, you really feel like you are on Mars. This is also where you will find Lawrence of Arabia's house.
After such a busy and exhausting day head to your tent in the middle of the desert for some star gazing.
You will wake up to the most glorious sunrise, eat a Bedouin breakfast before heading to your next stop, Petra!
Petra… Where to start… There is a reason why it is called the 8th wonder of the world, it is beyond beautiful!
At the entrance of the park you will be welcomed by a horde of horses. You have the choice between walking to the hidden city or riding to it. The queue for the horses can get fairly long so we decided to walk there.
After a good 30 minutes’ walk, you will finally arrived at the Treasury. It is such an impressive sight that you can hear the crowd gasps when standing in front of it. Talking about the crowd, one thing Petra is not lacking is tourists, it is a very busy place and it can get a little annoying at times.
If you want to beat the crowd take an indirect route around the huge site. Once at the Street of Facades, take the steps heading above the city, there are pretty easy to find with other tourists hiking up. It is good to note that the climb is physical and challenging but absolutely worth it for the views.
You will need good hiking boots though as at times there are no stairs or guardrails. Make sure to also pack a lot of water and sunscreen.
Get lost in time, walking in and out of the cave houses, wandering around what was once the city centre and the farmer market. It is a beautiful place and is worth every drop of sweat.
Head back to town before sunset and grab dinner at one of the small places next to your hotel.
Day 6 & 7
The last stretch of the trip takes you to the Dead Sea. We based ourselves at the Marriott for the last 3 nights.
Float in the water, cover your body with mud and relax.
Day 6 & 7
Another day by the Dead Sea and in the morning go for a hike in Mujib Nature Reserve. The scenery is breathtaking and you are being kept cool by the river you are walking through. There is a bit of climbing and swimming involved but you will be provided with a floating vest and you can head back to the entrance at any point.