Surprisingly this is our first post about Petra. We’ve covered quite a bit of the rest of Jordan as you’ve probably seen, but I felt it was time to post something about Petra, especially as tourism to the site continues to grow month over month. The world famous Nabatean city of Petra is, of course, the biggest single draw to Jordan, and rightly so as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. This makes Petra a must-see for anyone traveling to the Middle East let alone just to Jordan.
When it comes to dramatic and breathtaking landscapes in Jordan there is nothing greater than those you’ll find in and around Wadi Rum, Jordan. Even if you’ve been to Jordan, but never to the Wadi Rum itself, but have driven from Petra/Ma’an to Aqaba you’ll know exactly what type of landscape I’m talking about.
You might be surprised to read a post with “scuba diving” and “Jordan” in the title, but it’s true, Jordan, a country in the Middle East, has excellent and easily accessible scuba diving! Aqaba, Jordan, nestled between Saudi Arabia and Israel sits ideally at the tip of the Gulf of Aqaba, has several kilometers of coastline south of Aqaba (Tala Bay), and with calm waters and year-round high temperatures make Jordan an ideal scuba diving destination.
Jordan is much more than Petra, Wadi Rum, the Dead Sea or even Jerash. In fact, a large swath of eastern Jordan is dotted with several well-preserved castles all easily seen on a day trip from Amman.
We all know so much about Jordan, but how well do we know its capital Amman?
You might be wondering “why would they celebrate Christmas in Jordan?” Well for those who aren’t aware the land that comprises modern day Jordan played an important role in Christianity’s history, much of which is outlined in the Old Testament. As a result Christians have resided in Jordan since the crucifixion of Jesus and continue to do so today.
Between the bustling cities, magnificent ruins, dry deserts and waterfront towns facing the Dead Sea and the Gulf of Aqaba, a vacation to Jordan is calling your name. Plus, the people are known for the hospitality and welcoming nature, and tend to be happy to help out if you need directions. Given this generally welcoming attitude, we recommend adopting the attitude yourself and getting to know the local people and local cultures in the best way possible -- by staying in a local home. From city center apartments to country houses, here are the best Airbnbs in Jordan.
Mid-morning on day five of our road trip we began our drive up the windy route through the hills toward the historical city of Madaba, where I (Albert) served as a Peace Corps Volunteer. With the Dead Sea receding in the distance behind us, my excitement grew. I had been looking forward to returning to Madaba since I left nearly 8 years ago.
After a few days of lounging around in balmy Aqaba we packed our car yet again and drove north to the Dead Sea. Even though Albert and I both lived in Jordan for two years, neither of us had taken the Jordan Valley Highway. This highway spans the length of the country from Aqaba in the south to just near the border with Syria in the north running along the Dead Sea and Jordan River.
After spending a few days in Amman, Albert and I packed up the little Hyundai we rented from Budget and headed to the furthest point south in Jordan, Aqaba. Situated on the Gulf of Aqaba and bordered by Saudi Arabia and Israel, with Egypt off in the horizon, Aqaba has a desert climate and makes a perfect escape in the colder months.