Jordan is undoubtedly the most beautiful country I visited last year. This small country has a rich history and an interesting culture and it’s blessed with beautiful tourist attractions, delicious food and friendly inhabitants.
Despite the many rumors, Jordan is a safe country which you can explore on your own without worrying about your safety. I must confess that I planned this trip down to the smallest detail and this is why the week I spent in Jordan turned out to be a memorable experience. In case you plan a trip to Jordan and you don’t know what to visit there, my trip itinerary might come in handy.
My boyfriend and I went on this trip with another couple and we landed in Amman in a beautiful November afternoon. Shortly after this, we rented a car at the airport and we started our journey in Jordan. If you want to save time, you should book the car in advance. This is exactly what we did, a few weeks before we got to Jordan.
Madaba, the town of mosaics, was the first place we visited. Madaba is a nice town which shelters two different religious communities: the Muslim community and the Christian community. Therefore, in Madaba you can admire both Muslim and Christian edifices. Small souvenir shops, good restaurants and a good vibe perfectly describe Madaba.
After several hours of exploring the town, we chose the perfect place to have dinner. Bawabit Madaba Restaurant & Café turned out to be one of the most inspired decisions of that day. The tasty appetizers and the chicken specialties, the savory mixed grill and fish were perfectly completed by the design and the pleasant atmosphere of this restaurant. After this delicious dinner, we continued our journey to Wadi Musa, the place which became our home for the next three days. Wadi Musa is the closest town to Petra and the perfect place to find accommodation in case you want to spend more time exploring the amazing complex of Petra.
On our first day there we visited a part of the complex, called the Main Trail, and we explored the small depression and the surroundings. We also admired the Treasury, a 40-meter high stone monument which is the most famous tourist attraction in the entire complex. After admiring this place, we spent the rest of the day exploring the surrounding cliffs and discovering beautiful panoramas. For a great experience but also because the road is a bit dangerous, I advise you to hire a local guide. We did this and we had the opportunity to admire the Treasury from great angles and take a lot of pictures.
After these memorable moments, we decided to continue exploring the cliffs until we got to the High Place of Sacrifice. Situated above the city of Petra, at an altitude of 170 meters, this place offered us gorgeous panoramic views. The experience of seeing Petra illuminated by hundreds of candles marked the end of that perfect day. It was amazing to sit down on the sand among the candles and listen to the locals who were playing the rabab and telling stories about the history of Petra. As a tip, I would like to tell you that Petra by night is organized only twice a week, on Wednesdays and Thursdays and it starts at 20.30.
On the second day we continued visiting Petra. We admired the amphitheater and explored the mountain with temples and tombs. The hours we spent visiting the ruins went by so fast because we were totally absorbed by what we were seeing. After that we began climbing the cliffs and following the Ad-Deir Trail to get to Ad-Deir or the Monastery. The road was difficult, but the breathtaking scenery was worth the effort. We managed to reach the top of the mountain in the afternoon when the sun was up in the sky and the Monastery was caressed by its rays. This was the perfect moment to admire the Monastery in all its splendor.
As a tip, I would like to tell you that you can buy the cheapest souvenirs in the complex while you go up on the Ad-Deir Trail. In case you want to save some money, I recommend the Jordan Pass. This sightseeing package costs 55 dinars per person and it includes your tourist entry visa, two entrances to Petra and also the entrances to Wadi Rum Desert, Jerash and many other tourist attractions. It’s important to buy the Jordan Pass in advance because you will not have the possibility to buy it at the airport. We bought ours online, a few weeks before we got to Jordan.
When it comes to food, I recommend My Mom’s Recipe Restaurant, which is located in Wadi Musa. This restaurant offers a diversified menu, giving you the chance to taste a lot of Jordanian dishes. In addition, you will enjoy your food in an authentic Jordanian atmosphere.
The next day we left Wadi Musa ready for another adventure. The Wadi Rum Desert is just one memorable experience from the long string of memories that I made during this trip. Petra and the Wadi Rum Desert are in an open competition for the title of the most beautiful tourist attraction in Jordan. Even though people might have different opinions about this, one thing is certain: crossing the desert in an off-road car and enjoying the amazing views is a once in a lifetime experience.
Our adventure started in the morning when the guide picked us up from a public parking lot. Ten minutes later the scenery was displaying its beauty in front of our eyes. It was amazing to admire the sand dunes, the sandstone cliffs and the gorgeous rock formations. The day went by very fast, but thanks to our local guide we managed to visit a lot of beautiful places in the desert. I must confess that it would have been very difficult without his help and this is why I advise you to opt for a guided tour in the Wadi Rum Desert. We made an online reservation in advance at Salem Camp, the place where we spent the night and we were offered a local guide for the off-road ride. Considering this aspect, it goes without saying that our day was perfect.
Still, the most interesting part of this adventure started when we arrived at Salem Camp. After my own experience there, I can understand why it is said that you cannot leave the Wadi Rum Desert without spending a night in the desert and admiring the sky full of stars. The rows of tents lined up in the camping area give you the feeling that you are in the middle of a military camp. Spending the night at Salem Camp might be a more comfortable experience than you think, because the two-person tents are equipped with large beds, blankets and even light bulbs and power outlets.
The surrounding cliffs offer gorgeous views and with a little luck you will have the chance to admire a great sunset, too. As far as I’m concerned, the gorgeous sunset, the millions of stars in the sky and the Bedouins’ stories were the ingredients of a memorable day. In addition, the traditional dinner cooked in sand perfectly completed this experience.
As I have already said, the entrance to the Wadi Rum Desert is free in case you buy the Jordan Pass. For an authentic experience in the desert I advise you to book a guided tour. For example, we chose a package which included a one-day car ride in the desert and a night of accommodation at Salem Camp with free dinner and breakfast.
When the sun came up, we were in the middle of the desert and with deep regret we had to continue our journey after breakfast. We arrived at the Dead Sea in the evening and I can’t tell you how eager I was to float in its waves for the second time. I must confess that I saw the Dead Sea for the first time a few years ago during a trip to Israel and I really wanted to see it again in Jordan. We chose a hotel with a private beach which offered us moments of privacy and of course the unique experience of floating in the water. It is well-known that the Dead Sea is one of the saltiest bodies of water on Earth and that you can literally float in its water.
The next day we divided our time between relaxing at the Dead Sea and exploring the city of Jerash. Considered the second best preserved Roman city in the world after Pompei, the ancient city of Jerash is blessed with gorgeous temples, amphitheaters and impressive public squares. It was a really interesting and unique experience to discover the ruins of Jerash and to admire its edifices. The entrance to Jerash is also free if you purchase the Jordan Pass.
When it comes to food, I recommend the Lebanese House which is a very good restaurant in Jerash. This is the place where I tried mouth-watering grilled meat, tasty appetizers served with freshly baked bread and delicious desserts. In addition, the beautiful interior design of the Lebanese House and the pleasant atmosphere are the ingredients which perfectly completed this culinary experience.
We dedicated the last two days we spent in Jordan to the city of Amman which is the capital of the country. Exploring the Amman Citadel with its Byzantine churches, the museum and the Roman theater offered me a few moments of relaxation and joy. The ruins of the Amman Citadel seem to hold pages of history within their walls. It goes without saying that the entrance to the fortress is also included in the benefits offered by the Jordan Pass.
Walking down the narrow streets of Amman and enjoying the atmosphere in downtown are two other aspects that I really liked. Not to mention that the local bazaars were a real treat for me because I love shopping. The variety of shops which sell all kinds of products, the local pastry shops and the constant agitation give downtown Amman a special vibe. The stunning King Abdullah I Mosque is another place I really liked in Amman. This blue-domed mosque is the place where many Muslims gather for prayer.
As you were probably expecting, I also have a restaurant recommendation in Amman. Sufra Restaurant is a place which offers a variety of delicious appetizers, meat and fish specialties and tasty desserts. Located in a beautiful old villa, this restaurant is blessed with a lovely garden terrace. Sufra Restaurant also has a gorgeous interior design which creates a really pleasant atmosphere.
After these two days that we spent in Amman, we left Jordan with a lot of beautiful memories. Overall, Jordan was a memorable experience and I really hope that my trip itinerary will inspire you in case you ever plan to visit this country.