13 Exciting Things to Do in Jordan To Make You Pack Your Bags

Written By: The Planet D

There are so many things to do in Jordan, you will want at least a couple of weeks to visit. From the thriving metropolis of Amman to the quiet retreat of the Feynan Ecolodge, there is something for everyone.

Jordan – The jewel of the Middle East. Surrounded by chaos and unrest, Jordan has remained a neutral destination and it is difficult to imagine the conflict that is happening outside its borders.

It’s advisable to stay away from the Syrian and Iraqi borders and be sure to steer clear of demonstrations in public places. But travel to Jordan feels no more insecure than anywhere else in the world these days and once you enter the country, you’ll feel the welcoming friendliness of locals.

What to do in Jordan

We had the opportunity to visit much of the country and fell in love with its beauty, culture and hospitality. Jordan is a destination to remember. So these are our top 10 things to do in Jordan that will make you want to pack your bags right now.

1. Ancient City of Petra

things to do in jordan camels
A must thing to do when visiting Jordan

Petra is one of the great ancient cities of the world and it definitely lives up to the hype. With momentous buildings built into high cliffs, Petra will literally take your breath away as you step into the Treasury square after your 2km walk through the deep narrow gorge of the Siq.

Dating back more than 2000 years, Petra was an important part of the Silk Route to China and India but was abandoned at some time around the 12th century.

It was only known to locals for hundreds of years until it was rediscovered by the West in 1812. This legendary setting is so beautiful, Hollywood has since come a-knockin’ using Petra for filming locations in movies such as Transformers and Indian Jones. Read more about Petra here.

2. Petra by Night

things to do in jordan petra night
Petra at night is amazing.

Petra is an incredible place to visit by day, but going to Petra at night is magical. When the sun goes down, visitors follow candles lining the Siq all the way to the treasury where we watched a traditional Bedouin performance.

While the performance was only average, it was the setting that was breathtaking. Hundreds of candles lit up the treasury making for a night to remember.

For us, Petra was one of the greatest ancient cities blowing us away far beyond our visits to Machu Picchu, the Pyramids or even Anchor Wat.

3. Little Petra

little petra

Of course, Petra is the top draw in Jordan, but while there be sure to have your guide take you a bit north to visit Little Petra also known as Siq al Barid.

Archaeologists believe it was a suburb of Petra. See, the ancient cities weren’t that much different than today! The draw here are the 2000 year old frescoes. Like Petra, entrance is through a narrow siq, albeit on a much smaller scale.

4. Float in the Dead Sea

what to do in jordan Swim in the Dead Sea
Swim in the Dead Sea

The Dead Sea truly is filled with salt and you can float until your heart’s content. Book a hotel directly on the sea so you can enjoy a daily dip in the healing waters. People have been known to lay on their backs reading a newspaper in the Dead Sea and it’s true! You really float on top!

  • Where to stay at the Dead Sea:

5. Take a Therapeutic Mud Bath

visit jordan dead sea

The minerals of the dead sea have healing qualities and many people book retreats to help with ailments. Take advantage of the spas utilizing the healing waters of the Dead Sea and enjoy a retreat into pure luxury. If you rub mud all over your skin, it will be as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

I found the salt to be very powerful however and it stung my skin. It was good to have a bucket of fresh water on hand.

6. Canyoning Wadi Mujib

canyoning jordan activities
Canyoning is a must when visiting Jordan.

One of our favorite activities in all of Jordan was splashing around in the waters of Wadi Mujib for a day. Wadi Mujib is easily reached from the Dead Sea and can be included during your stay there.

Canyoning in the warm waters of Jordan was a fantastic thrill beginning with a rappel down a waterfall into fast-flowing water. Wearing a PFD (life jacket) we swam through pools, plunged down natural waterslides and slid through narrow gorges. It was an amazing way to escape the heat and get our adventure on. Read all about it at our Canyoning Adventure in Jordan

7. Wadi Rum

famous things to in jordan wadi rum
Wadi Rum is an incredible place to walk around.

Wadi Rum is an incredible desert valley filled with narrow gorges, towering cliffs and natural stone arches. It’s home to the Bedouins where the human race has inhabited this land for nearly 12,000 years. T.E. Lawrence began his journey through the Arabian desert here.

Lawrence of Arabia is so linked to Wadi Rum, that the beautiful rock formation known as the Seven Pillars of Wisdom was named after his autobiography.

8. Sleep in a Bedouin Camp

things to do in jordan bedouin camp
A Bedouin camp near Wadi Rum

There are many things to do in Wadi Rum. We took a jeep tour deep into the desert and we went on a camel safari to fill out our very own Lawrence of Arabia fantasies.

Experience a true Bedouin experience as you camp in the middle of Wadi Rum in yurts made out of wool. Walk by candlelight, enjoy a Bedouin meal cooked in the earth and ride a camel at sunset. But the best part about visiting Wadi Rum was staying in a Bedouin Camp to have a true Bedouin Experience.

We ate dinner in a tented camp where they prepared our meal underground. We stayed in our own private camp and walked along the pathway by candlelight. It was amazing to sleep under the stars.

  • Where to Stay Captains Desert Camp – We stayed here and had a great authentic experience and ate an incredible meal.

9. Feynan Eco-Lodge

where to stay in jordan building
Feynan Eco-Lodge

The Feynan Eco-Lodge is a luxury retreat that makes protecting Jordan’s natural resources and wildlife a priority. Hire a local guide from the lodge to take you on a nature hike through the reserve to point out the ancient ruins, local flora, and fauna and to share personal stories of growing up in the area.

At night enjoy a completely light pollution-free view of the stars as you lay in silence on the roof of the lodge to enjoy the night skies while sipping fresh tea.

10. Dana Nature Reserve

things to do in jordan nature reserve
Dana Nature Reserve

The Dana Biosphere Reserve cuts through the Rift Valley leading all the way to the heart of Africa. The town of Dana is a 15th century stone village overlooking the great valley. Once a thriving town, it has now been turned into an artist and farming community.

Here you can explore the town and hike through the natural preserve seeing local life as it has been lived for centuries. There are multi-day hikes you can do through the Biosphere Reserve and one even takes you from the village of Dana to the Feynan Ecolodge. Jordan is fast becoming an eco-travel destination.

11. Jerash

things to do in jordan jerash
There are beautiful buildings in Jordan.

If you like Roman ruins, you will love Jerash. Jerash is the most well-preserved ancient Roman city outside of Italy. Jerash dates back 6500 years and was an important city on Rome’s ancient trade route.

Thanks to the dry climate, it laid untouched for centuries to understand waiting to be explored. Excavations began in 1925 and today it is one of the greatest examples of Roman architecture outside of Rome. 

  • Jerash can be reached by a day trip from Amman. We stayed at the Four Seasons Amman and took a day tour from the city
  • Get Your Guide offers day trips from Amman to Jerash.
  • For more on Jerash, read our post on our time at Jerash

12. Mount Nebo

jordan things to do

For a spiritual journey visit Mount Nebo known to be the spot where Moses saw the promised land before he died. Looking out over the valley, you too can witness spectacular views of the Holy land.

Mount Nebo houses an active monastery and Byzantium church that is a popular stop for pilgrimages. Be sure to check out the mosaics.

13. Explore Amman

amman walking tour try street food when you visit jordan
Making Friends in Amman

Amman is a thriving metropolis that is worth spending a few days in. Enjoy a shisha at a local bar, shop at one of the many markets and be sure to visit The King Abdullah Mosque.

For some local flare make sure to enjoy a meal at the Hashem Restaurant an outdoor café located in an alleyway packed with patrons.

Things to do in Amman

  • King Abdullah Mosque
  • Eat Food. Amman has an amazing food scene from street food to 5-star dining. Foods to try are falafel, hummus, nuts, khunafa, shawarma.
  • Al Balad – The heart of Amman for markets and shopping
  • Amman Citadel
  • Rainbow Street

Where to Stay in AmmanFour Seasons Amman

As you can see, there are plenty of things to do in Jordan far beyond Petra. With excellent eco-adventures, rich history, and incredible landscapes, Jordan makes for a wonderful Middle East vacation destination.

If you are looking for something different in your travels this year, be sure to give Jordan a try. You won’t be disappointed.

Map of Jordan – Our Itinerary

jordan tourist attractions map

Click here for your own interactive map of Jordan

Attractions like Mount Nebo, Jerash and even the Dead Sead (if you have limited time) can be done in day trips from Amman.

We suggest at least one night at the Dead Sea.

Wadi Rum and Petra need to be overnight trips to truly appreciate the experiences.

Dana and Feynan are also recommended to have an overnight trip.

Suggested Jordan 10 Day Itinerary

  • Day 1 – 3: (2 nights) – Explore Amman (can include a day trip to Jerash on one day)
  • Day 3/4 – Day 3 leave for Petra and enjoy Petra by Night before exploring Petra the following day. (2 nights)
  • Day 5/6 – Wadi Rum (2 nights)
  • Day 6 – Overnight Feynan Eco Lodge (1 night)
  • Day 7 – Overnight Dana Nature Reserve
  • Day 8/9 – Dead Sea (2 nights).
  • Day 10 – Stop at Mount Nebo on the way back to Amman

Read More about Jordan:

Enjoy all of these places to visit in Jordan? Save it to Pinterest for future travel planning.

very best things to do in jordan

Travel Planning Resources

Looking to book your next trip? Why not use these resources that are tried and tested by yours truly.

Book Your Flights: Start planning your trip by finding the best flight deals on Skyscanner. We have used them for years and have found that they have the best flight deals.

Book your Hotel: Find the best prices on hotels with these two providers. If you are located in Europe use Booking.com and if you are anywhere else use TripAdvisor.

Find Apartment Rentals: You will find the cheapest prices on apartment rentals with VRBO

Travel Insurance: Don't leave home without it. Here is what we recommend:

  • Safety Wing - Occasional Travelers.
  • Medjet - Global air medical transport and travel security.

Book Your Activities: Looking for walking tours, skip-the-line tickets, private guides, and more? Then we recommend Get Your Guide.

Need more help planning your trip? Make sure to check out our Resources Page where we highlight all the great companies that we trust when we are traveling.

About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Debra Corbeil are the owners and founders of The Planet D. After traveling to 115 countries, on all 7 continents over the past 13 years they have become one of the foremost experts in travel. Being recognized as top travel bloggers and influencers by the likes of Forbes Magazine, the Society of American Travel Writers and USA Today has allowed them to become leaders in their field.

Leave a Comment

16 thoughts on “13 Exciting Things to Do in Jordan To Make You Pack Your Bags”

  1. I don’t know that Amman, Jordan is so beautiful. I will describe it as Classic Beauty. Thanks for writing and sharing this trip report.

  2. Jordan is one of my favorite destinations in the world.wadi rum is the best place i love to visit again.Nice post ,thanks for sharing information.keep it up

  3. Hi I am planning my trip to Jordan in May first week. I am arriving in Amman and departing from Aqaba, I have total 7N to stay in Jordan and wish to explore as much as possible. Can anyone guide how I can spread my days across?

  4. I was meant to travel to Israel and Jordan in September 2010. It was when I was still working in the field of human rights. I got invited for a job interview in London, with Amnesty International, to be held the day before traveling – and had to cancel the trip, lose some 400 euro worth of flights etc. And in the end, I didn’t even get the job. It came down to “we were undecided between you and another candidate, and we picked the other”. Oh well. I need to go to Jordan to celebrate my decision to abandon that career and do something I enjoy much more!

    • What a bummer! I can understand why you cancelled though. That would have been an incredible opportunity to pass up. Sorry you didn’t get it, but it sounds like things turned out well. Maybe it was the catalyst you needed to follow your heart? Are you doing your blog full time now? I am sure you will get to Jordan soon. Perhaps the next time will be for an amazing project with the tourism board!

  5. Hi, Dave and Deb!

    I’m planning to go to Jordan a few months from now, and I’d really like to visit all the ten places you listed in this article! May I know the itinerary you used? I will be there for just 5 days, and I’d really like to consider the travel time between the locations you mentioned.

    Hoping for your quick response! It will be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you! Great blog, by the way! Love it!

    • Jordan is a fairly small country. It’s just a couple of hours between places. Jerash is only an hour from Amman, Wadi Rum is the farthest away from Amman at 5 Hours. If you start at Wadi Rum, then go to Petra (3 1/2 hours from Amman) then on from the Dead Sea. The Canyoning is right by the Dead Sea. For five days I think that should be a good itinerary for you. A day at Wadi Rum with an overnight at a Bedouin Camp, then on to Petra for a tour and do Petra at night then move onto the Dead Sea. A day at the Dead sea with a half day of Canyoning and then back to Amman. I don’t think there’s time for the Feynan Eco Lodge or Dana Nature Preserve, but you could give it a shot if you want to spend less time in Amman. Have a great time! The link to day tours to Wadi Rum is https://www.getyourguide.com/amman-l1035/full-day-wadi-rum-discovery-tour-from-amman-t15920/?partner_id=DRH67LO&cmp=DL_TourWadiRum