Tell someone you are thinking of visiting Jordan and it is likely that they’ll ask “Are you going to Petra?”. As one of the most famous sites in the country, and probably one of the most recognizable in the world due to its many appearances in movies and TV, it is an essential part of any visit to this Middle Eastern country. Yet, there is so much more to see and do in Jordan. Because of that, we have pulled together our list of the top 7 Jordan travel tips.
Jordan Travel Tips
#1 Know That It Is Safe
Although Jordan does share borders with Iraq and Syria, and is part of the region known as the Middle East, the U.S. State Department rates it as “risky” as almost all major European cities. In other words, it is a safe place to visit as long as you avoid the “iffy” areas at the borders. This is advice you would adhere to in almost any country – avoid the sketchier spots – so it is not unusual when applied to Jordan.
#2 Plan on More Than Petra
This should be at the top of all lists of Jordan travel tips because it is so crucial. Yes, Petra is one of the loveliest and most inspiring spots to see in real life, and there is more to it than the iconic treasury building (the Al Khazneh). However, it is not the only jaw-droppingly beautiful area of Jordan.
As a simple example, there is the Wadi Rum and its opportunity for camping beneath the stars. There is Aqaba along the Red Sea, the long stretch of Dead Sea coast, the many Umayyad desert castles, the ancient Roman city of Jerash, Umm Qais nearby, the sites of the Jordan River Valley, Mount Nebo, and so much more.
#3 Get Ready to Eat
Another of the best Jordan travel tips we might offer is for you to prepare to enjoy the amazing food that appears everywhere – from street vendors offering irresistible plates of falafel and hummus, to the bread vendors making an amazing array of options, to the more formal eateries, Jordan is known as a foodie paradise.
The Middle East, generally, has lots of fresh food, and Jordan is no exception. Count on cold salads in great abundance alongside breads, and be sure to sample the delicious olives as well as the national dish known as mansaf (rice and goat’s meat). Wines are also available and local vintages are always a good call.
#4 Pack (and Dress) Correctly
Packing for a trip of any length is often a challenge, and when traveling the Middle East, it is imperative to know about the various dress codes and customs to ensure you pack correctly. While it is always important to pack according to the weather you expect to encounter, remember that there is also the need for a bit of decorum in Jordan, too.
First, let’s consider the weather. Though the daytime temperatures in places like Petra and Aqaba can be unbelievably hot during the summer months, anywhere there is desert the temperatures typically plummet at sunset. That means you will always want a jacket and a windbreaker along with a light sweater, socks, and a scarf or shawl for cover. Sun hats and sunglasses are essentials, too.
Men should aim for loose fitting jeans or lightweight pants and t-shirts without large logos or graphics. Long and short sleeve shirts are ideal for layering. Women will want to keep their shoulders and upper arms covered and skirts should always go beneath the knees, if not longer. Lightweight fabrics that can be layered usually work well and it is a wise idea to have at least one long sleeved tunic and looser pants (never shorts) as key components in the wardrobe. Shawls to cover the head are also essential in religious sites.
Sandals and good walking shoes (even hiking boots) are essential to getting around the various sites safely and comfortably, too.
#5 Expect Friendliness
Another of the top Jordan travel tips is to expect most Jordanians to be friendly. The entire country is noted for its hospitable nature, and individual Jordanians are often some of the most effusive and kindly people travelers might ever encounter. In fact, experts have said that Jordan comes in a very close second to Thailand in terms of the openness, friendliness and encouraging nature of most of the people that travelers will meet.
That is why you should also consider “leaning into the conversation” another of the top Jordan travel tips. Jordanians will be happy to talk with travelers about their country, food, customs and more. They will tell you about little local treasures, where to buy (or not buy) different items, and so much more. It can become one of the best parts of the journey!
#6 Don’t Skip Amman
Another of the top Jordan travel tips is to always give time to an exploration of Amman. Too many travel sites say that it is a bustling city or that there are more important spots. Amman is worth a day or two for its café culture, its historic sites, and its Jordan Museum, among other areas.
#7 Hire a Tour Guide
Lastly, the very best of the Jordan travel tips we have to include is to work with a guide or travel provider with knowledge of the area. While there are lots of destinations that travelers can visit and enjoy without a guide, a visit to Jordan is going to be greatly enhanced with an expert at your side.
In fact, one of the savviest of all Jordan travel tips is to work with a tour provider like Egypt Tours Plus. We have pre-arranged Egypt and Jordan tours with groups, private guided tours and even entirely customized adventures.
We provide VIP treatment, with English-speaking guides and drivers, excellent transportation from point to point, and lots of little experiences in addition to stops at the most important sites and attractions.
When you want Jordan travel tips that make a big difference in your experience – we suggest following those above, and hiring a seasoned guide to let you sit back and relax as you make your way through Jordan’s many amazing sites.
Egypt and Jordan Combination Tours