Jordan vacations are unusual and unforgettable. Teeming with Middle Eastern culture, relics of bygone civilizations and breathtaking rugged scenery, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is a land of inspiration.
The Kingdom of Jordan has long captivated visitors inspiring religion and faith among Christians and Muslims alike. Jordan is full of biblical references, which fuels spiritual Jordan vacations. This remarkable heritage is recorded in the Islamic Qur’an. It is generally believed that the region, which now makes up modern day Jordan, was part of the blessed neighborhood. In the Jordan Valley, significant holy sites reflect the development of Islam and contain the tombs of Prophet Mohammad’s companions. For Christians, the Book of Genesis also mentions the Jordan River Valley that is believed to be the location of the Garden of Eden.
Other religious sites include Mount Nebo where Moses was buried. Visitors can view a spectacular panoramic scene from the mountaintop, just as Moses did, taking in the Jordan River Valley, the Dead Sea and Jerusalem. A place called Bethany Beyond the Jordan contains the site of what is believed to be the earliest example of a Christian church to have been found anywhere in the world. The site is also referred to by Roman and Medieval texts as where John the Baptist lived, preached and baptized Jesus.
A beautiful and contrasting country, Jordan vacations present a range of attractions from traditional handicraft markets, to modern art galleries and the historic crusader castles of Karak, Shobak and Ajloun. There are also plenty of opportunities for sports like rock climbing, abseiling, hiking and scuba diving.
Jordan tourism boasts some distinctly inspirational sights. The majestic Wadi Rum is a stretch of high rocky desert walls where herds of gazelles and Oryx sweep the canyon floor. Visitors to this magnificent reserve are encouraged to “hear the silence” of this peaceful landmark. Also known as the Valley of the Moon, Wadi Rum has famous patronage among many high profile figures including T E Lawrence who described the landscape as “vast, echoing and god like”. For an unforgettable experience, visitors can soar over the wadi in a hot air balloon.
A major Jordan tourism destination is the Dead Sea coast. Washed up along the rocks of the shoreline are huge salt crystals, which look at first glance like snow. Lavish 5 star hotel resorts and spas line the coast offering modern facilities, exotic cuisine and complete luxury from which to branch out and explore the fascinating landscape. A world-renowned place to rejuvenate body and soul with a mud bath, the high salt content of the seawater allows you a literally buoyant experience.
Definitely the most popular Jordan tourism attraction and often referred to as the eighth wonder of the ancient world is the “lost city” of Petra. Carved into a sheer rock face the underground city is accessed through a narrow gorge or Siq before reaching the Al-Khazneh (treasury). Built in the 1st Century, this exquisite architectural gem houses a tomb of a Nabataean King. The site even featured in a 1989 Hollywood film, Indiana Jones and the last Crusade starring Harrison Ford and Sean Connery. Jordan tours to Petra by night offer a uniquely magical experience as 2000 burning candles lead visitors through the underground rooms to the treasury.
From the southern City of Aqaba at the northern tip of the Red Sea, on a clear day you can see Israel, Saudi Arabia and Egypt! Here you can experience excellent snorkeling and scuba diving of teeming coral reefs or simply view the magical underwater life from a glass bottom boat.
At the sprawling mountain city of Amman, Neolithic remains sit alongside an archaeological site known as the citadel, which contains Byzantine relics such as the Temple of Hercules and an Umayyad Empire era palace. Lying at the foot of the citadel is a 6000 seat Roman theatre that is still used for cultural performances.
Boasting a number of desert castles with fine examples of early Islamic architecture, the Kingdom of Jordan can be proud to have such magnificent structures chronicling the regions illustrious past. Many of these Islamic complexes can be visited by Jordan tours within one or two days from Amman. Certainly Jordan tours will stop at Qusair Amra. This is an astonishingly well-preserved castle and UNESCO World Heritage Site full of lively frescoes.
The ancient city of Jerash has seen more than 6,500 years of human occupation and as such contains an exceptional list of Roman era attractions. Once a bustling Roman provincial town, the ruins here have been painstakingly excavated and restored. At this major Jordan tourism attraction visitors can walk around a complete Roman town with paved streets, hilltop temples, theatres, public plazas and baths. Standing among the ancient stone structures, the experience allows tourists a fascinating insight into the glory of the Byzantine era.
Perhaps more than most other Arab countries, the people of Jordan are regarded as particularly warm and friendly. Women enjoy the considerable freedom of education and high appointments within business and politics. While local tradition and customs continue to play a large part of everyday life, tourists are particularly welcome and certain western liberties accepted. In short, Jordan vacations offer an accessible and comfortable introduction to the first time visitor to the fascinating region of the Middle East. Exceptionally hot through June to September the best time to visit is spring and autumn.