The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, although similar in size to the state of Indiana, is a place of immense cultural, historical, and natural variety. From the ancient ruins of Petra to the therapeutic waters of the Dead Sea, Jordan offers an array of experiences that cater to various preferences. Despite being primarily a desert nation, Jordan's landscapes range from towering cliffs and vast desert expanses to fertile fields cut through by expansive canyons. It's a country that effortlessly blends the old with the new, where ancient ruins stand proudly against the backdrop of modern cities.
The official language spoken in Jordan is Arabic, but English is widely spoken in major towns and tourist attractions. The local currency is the Jordanian Dinar. It's recommended to carry cash, especially when visiting remote areas such as Wadi Rum, the Dead Sea, and Petra, as ATMs might not be readily available.
Jordan is considered a safe destination for travelers. However, due to the geographic spread of its attractions, it's advisable to hire a driver or book a tour for ease of travel. As for budget, Jordan can be surprisingly expensive compared to other destinations. Accommodations, particularly in tourist hotspots like Petra or the Dead Sea, can range from $150-$200 a night.
The Ancient City of Petra, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, is a must-visit when in Jordan. Carved into towering cliffs of rose-colored stone, this ancient city is an archaeological marvel. A visit to Petra is not complete without gazing upon the Treasury and the Monastery, two of the site's most iconic structures.
For those who crave a taste of the desert, a trip to Wadi Rum is highly recommended. With its towering cliffs, red dunes, and vast panoramas, Wadi Rum offers a glimpse into the serene beauty of the desert. Here, you can engage in various activities such as off-road jeep tours, camel rides, and even overnight stays in Bedouin camps.
The Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth, is another highlight of Jordan. Known for its hypersaline waters, the Dead Sea offers a unique floating experience and its mineral-rich mud is known for its therapeutic properties.
Amman, the capital of Jordan, is a bustling city that offers a mix of the old and the new. Visit the Amman Citadel for a taste of the city's rich history, or explore the modern side of Amman by taking a stroll down Rainbow Street.
If you're a fan of marine life, a trip to Aqaba to explore the Red Sea's coral reefs is a must. The Red Sea is known for its rich biodiversity and is considered one of the best diving spots in the world.
Jordanian cuisine is similar to that of other Middle Eastern countries, with falafel being the national dish. Other popular dishes include hummus, moutabel, and kebabs. Don't miss the opportunity to try a Bedouin zarb, a combination of slow-roasted vegetables and chicken baked in a sand pit, especially when in Wadi Rum.
When planning your trip to Jordan, consider visiting during spring or autumn when the temperatures are more manageable. Also, dressing conservatively is recommended, especially when visiting religious sites. Lastly, don't forget to bring along a universal adapter as the plugs in Jordan are of type C, D, F, G, and J.
With its striking landscapes, rich history, and warm hospitality, Jordan offers a unique travel experience. Whether you're exploring the ancient city of Petra, floating in the Dead Sea, or enjoying a traditional Bedouin meal in Wadi Rum, Jordan is a destination that leaves a lasting impression.