Jordan is a country that usually doesn’t come up in many travelers’ list of places to go. It isn’t like Thailand, India, Brazil, Japan or France. For many who end up journeying to Jordan, the reviews always come in the territory of: fascination, sweet-surprise and wanderlust satisfying. The reasons? There are many reasons. Hovering under the radar of most wanderers, the country of Jordan hides a wealth of historical and cultural wealth situated in places gifted with some of the best set of landscape scenery in the world.
To further introduce Jordan to you, here are some must-see places in Jordan.
A place seemingly out of this world, it became the shooting setting of the Matt Damon film “The Martian”.
The vast desert land of Wadi Rum comprising of waving rocky hills and chiseled canyons – separated by golden sand dunes, is a sight to behold. It instantly will take all your worldly worries away.
The famous Lawrence of Arabia, Thomas Edward Lawrence described it as “vast, echoing, and God-like”. Indeed, a minute into stepping foot on the soil of Wadi Rum and you will immediately appreciate the work of God in creating such jaw-dropping place you wouldn’t expect to exist in Planet Earth.
The Wadi Rum is also home to the group of people called the Bedouins. They are the nomadic descendants of Arabs who settled into the Syrian and Jordanian dessert many centuries ago. Bedouins is translated into the local language as “dessert dwellers”. Wadi Rum is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Poet John William Burgon described it as “A rose-red city half as old as time” because Petra – like wine, appears more beautiful as centuries goes by.
Hidden from the world for a long time before a team of explorers led by Johann Ludwig Burckhardt of Switzerland, stumbled upon it in 1812. Since then, archeologists have unearthed a vast underground world consisting of spectacular rock chiseled temples and ruins of an old civilization.
Belonging to the Arab Nabateans in 312 BC, the ruins of Petra is said to be one of the most amazing left over structures from the civilization of yester-centuries.
Travelers are treated to a magical passageway known as the Siq – which is flanked by massive boulder walls shimmering in golden hues against the shining sun, en route to the main showcasing structure in Petra known as The Treasury. The whole experience of walking until catching sight of the rest of Petra dishes a truly memorable experience for every tourists.
Petra was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985.
The City of Amman
After your twin jaunts to the ruins of Petra and Wadi Rum, it’s time to experience the modern part of Jordan. The capital city of Amman presents a cosmopolitan feel by charmingly fusing the old cultures into the ways of living. Regal at the unique style of architecture while walking around the quaint parts of the city discovering lovely corners – in the form of mouthwatering restaurants serving tasty Jordan cuisine or just hang around delightful cafes. Exploring the city of Amman also gives you a wonderful opportunity to mingle with the locals and to find out for yourself that they are also a friendly bunch of people totally different from what most media outlets have portrayed them in the past.
Mount Nebo is a popular pilgrimage site because it was here where the Hebrew Bible mentioned as the place where Prophet Moses viewed the Promised Land – which situates just across the Fiver Jordan.
Today, the peak of Mount Nebo, which rises on an elevated ridge at a height of 2,320 feet above sea level, provides a clear view of the Holy Land, the City of Jericho, and the River Jordan and on a clear day, even the city of Jerusalem.
Christian history also suggest that Mount Nebo is the burial place of Moses. Travelers visiting this place need not go on a strenuous hike because there is a paved road that leads to the peak of the mountain.
The Dead Sea
The saltiest sea on Earth isn’t swimmable but dipping on it will surely become one of the most unique experience you will ever have.
Due to its high saline density and presence of other minerals, one can effortlessly float over the waters. Tourists would often pose like they were reading a newspaper while floating along the Dead Sea. The mud underneath the waters is said to be also filled with minerals that cures the skin of other blemishes. This is why you can even purchase a mud pack bottle at one of the shops located at the many resorts situated on the Jordanian side of the Dead Sea.
Ruined City of Jerash
North of the city of Amman, situates the ruined city of Jerash. This lovely city boasts of a number of fascinating Byzantine era churches and temples – all adorned with beautiful architecture as evidenced by the still standing colonnades and columns.
It used to be a popular Roman Empire City and a center of trade in the Mediterranean. Today, it remains as one of the living reminders of the rich history and culture of Jordan.
Dana Nature Reserve
After discovering the best of everything about Jordan’s bounteous culture and history, its high time to check out the country’s wonderful set of nature. At Dana Nature Reserve, be immediately drawn to the sweeping medley of boulder covered hills, scrub-patched mountains and edgy peaks.
As a protected area, it retains its magical landscape similar to when it was still the passageway of Bedouin nomads en route to the rest of Jordan. Visitors today can witness the old style of life still practiced by the many local tribes residing in the region. Small houses made of stones located in the many old villages offers homestay accommodations for tourists.
These are just a few must-see places in Jordan because for every traveler willing to exhibit a more adventurous zest for discovery, one can easily venture to other ancient city and nature haven in this super underrated county. Just remember, when in Jordan – to be always open to the possibility of new discoveries.