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For a country, which is fairly small in size, Jordan doesn’t half pack a punch when it comes to awesome stuff to see and do, from history, culture, food (OMG the hummus!), scuba diving and adventure sports. It’s a little country that’s ticking all my boxes!
Jordan in 10 days – A non-rushed perfect itinerary at a glance
This Jordan Itinerary gives you plenty of time to fully experience the sights, sounds and tastes in each destination, opposed to moving to a new location every day, feeling rushed and being too exhausted to really enjoy it.
Although it’s obvs that the number one attraction in Jordan is Petra, there’s a whole plethora of archaeological goodies in store including Jerash and the ruins in the city of Amman, as well as the stunning UNESCO listed Wadi Rum desert. Add to that some diving in the Red Sea topped off with a chill out day at the Dead Sea and voila, it’s the perfect 10 days in Jordan itinerary.
Although this itinerary is for 10 days in Jordan, it could easily be adapted for a longer stay. Alternatively, if you don’t have that long, then why not take a look at this Jordan 5-day itinerary instead.
10 days in Jordan – at a glance
- Day 1 – Amman
- Day 2 – Jerash
- Day 3 – Petra
- Day 4 – Petra
- Day 5 – Wadi Rum
- Day 6 – Wadi Rum
- Day 7 – Aqaba
- Day 8 – Aqaba (Scuba Dive or Snorkel)
- Day 9 – Dead Sea
- Day 10 – Amman
For a similar itiernary, with all the legwork done for you, check out G Adventures group tour of Jordan.
Map of Jordan
Other places to visit in Jordan
If you want to travel at a faster pace, then you could spend less time in each destination, alternatively, if you have more time then you could add to this 10 days in Jordan itinerary. I’ve included a load of extra attractions at the bottom of this post.
When is the best time to visit Jordan?
High season is from March to May due to warm days and milder nights, if you are in the north of the country during springtime, you’ll find blankets of spring meadow flowers scattered around the ruins.
Shoulder season runs from September to February. The weather can still be warm during the day time in the south, however, some parts of the country may get rain (even snow!)
Low season is from June and August due to the soaring temperatures across the country, in particular around the desert towards the south of the country.
It’s also good to be aware of things to consider while travelling through Ramadan.
Is Jordan safe?
In a single word, YES! Jordan is safe. At no point did I feel in danger or threatened as a solo female British white traveller. Sure, there are going to be the usual worldwide tourist issues of scams or pickpockets so just use your common sense like anywhere else in the world.
Getting about in Jordan
I found it really easy to travel around Jordan. To get about I used a mix of public transport, tourist bus, and hitching a ride with other tourists travelling in the same direction, as well as a ton of walking and hiking.
What about the Jordan Pass?
The three types of Jordan Pass are called ‘Jordan Wanderer’ priced at 70 JD (approx $99), ‘Jordan Explorer’ 75 JD (approx $106) and ‘Jordan Expert’ 80 JD (approx $113). Essentially, you get the same with each, but with the addition of a 1, 2 or 3 day pass for Petra.
The card is valid for 12 months after your buy it, although when you use it for the first time, it has a 2 week shelf life.
In a nutshell, the card gives you:
- Hassle-free entry to over 40 of Jordan’s tourist attractions including Petra, Jerash, Wadi Rum, and much more.
- The cost of your tourist entry visa is included in the pass.
Free downloadable digital brochures covering all of Jordan’s tourist attractions.
10 Day Jordan Itinerary
I started and finished my 10 days in Jordan in the countries’ capital, Amman. If your entry point is different then alter this Jordan itinerary to suit.
Day 1 in Jordan – Amman
Orientate yourself with the Capital of Jordan and visit the Colosseum, Citadel and Rainbow Street
Getting to Amman
If you fly to Amman and are staying in the central area, the two best options to get there are catch a taxi direct to your hotel (anywhere between 10-17JD or for the budget traveller take the shuttle bus from outside the airport for 3.30JD to the North Bus Station. Then from North Station to the centre of Amman (near Rainbow Street, which is near where you should be staying – it’s an awesome little area) is 3JD.
The touts will charge whatever they can get away with. One girl I spoke to was charged an eye-watering 10JD! As pushy as the touts are, don’t fall for it. They will make up a whole range of excuses as to why it’s more (traffic, rush hour, a long way, blah blah blah) ignore them. It’s 3JD max.
What to see in Amman
Amman is an old and ancient city, set across several hills. The best way to get about is by foot (or taxi if your knees don’t like the hills)
When you arrive, pick up a street map (or download one) and head out to see the ruins of Nymphonium, Colosseum and then up the hill to the Citadel.
Where to Eat in Amman
Rainbow Street is full of small eateries, so be sure to try some of the local cuisines. One great little find was….
Where to Stay in Amman
Amman Accomodation - Splurge
If you fancy 5 star luxury accomdation, like Patrick stayed in then take a look at Le Royal Hotel in Amman. This hotel boasts a health & fitness centre, spa facilities as well as range of restaurants and bars.
Amman Accomodation - Save
If you’re on a budget, then I can highly recommend Nomads Hotel. With both private rooms and dorm style accomodation, it’s modern, clean and has a good social vibe to mingle with other travelers. Whatsmore, it’s right next to Rainbow Street so you won’t have to go far to find delicious food!
Day 2 in Jordan - Jerash
Take a trip out of the capital to the ancient Roman Ruins of ‘The Pompeii of the East’
Getting to Jerash
Catch a taxi from Rainbow Street to North Bus Station for 3JD and then get the collective bus for 1JD to Jerash. The whole journey should be about an hour
What to see at Jerash
Get up early to visit the ancient Roman ruins of the city of Jerash. The ruins are situated just north of Amman and it’s super easy to get to and a well worthy trip outside of the capital. Jerash is known as the Pompeii of the East. It’s going to be pretty obvious why when you see it. A beautiful Roman Forum, collonaded cobbled roads, amphitheatres, temples. Jerash is amazing.
I’d suggest 3 hours MINIMUM to see the highlights, but you could easily spend a whole day at Jerash wandering about the ruins and thorroughly exploring the archaeological site.
For more detailed information on Jerash Roam Ruins, with the perfect walking itinerary and where to see all the best bits, check out the link. After you’re done, head back to Amman, and then in the late afternoon travel down to Petra ready for an early start the next day.
How much does Jerash cost?
Entry to Jerash is 10JD. The gates open at 8 am, get there as close as you can to this time to beat the tour bus crowds. After 10 am, it was starting to get busy.
Where to Stay in Jerash
There is very little gain by actually stayin in Jerash, it’s so close to the capital, Amman, that you’re better off visiting Jerash in a day. However, if you are intent of staying in the area then choose one next to the ruins site, prefereably with a view overlooking the archelogical park. Full Panorama boasts such views as well as modern private rooms within walking distance to the entry.
Day 3 in Jordan - Petra
An early start to beat the crowds at Petra, explore the UNESCO site all day and then go back after dark to experience Petra by Night
Getting to Petra from Amman
There are a number of ways of getting to Petra from Amman. I chose the public collective bus, there is also the tourist bus from Amman using the JETT bus which I talked about earlier as well as self drive options.
What to see at Petra
Grin and bear the inhumanely early start when you visit Petra, it’s worth it: I promise. The gate opens at 6 am so make sure you are there if you want to walk down The Siq and photograph The Treasury with next to no one there.
Thankfully, being at the gate so early you will have managed to avoid the crowds, small tours arrive at any point from 8 am the massive coach loads from about 10. By 11 am the park is rammed. So get to the decent stuff first.
Most people enter Petra via The Siq, an impressive canyon carved in the sandstone from centuries of weathering. Arriving early means that you won’t see anyone in front or behind you. It’s idyllic.
Eventually, you’re face to face with The Treasury. If you aren’t in the know, The Treasury is the image on EVERY advertisement of Petra. Being here at this hour you will mostly have the place to yourself aside from a few avid ‘grammers and the touts trying to sell you camel rides. Come back later to do one of the walks up to see the bird’s eye view.
Next spot to do before the crowds get big are the Tombs, followed by the Temple and up to the Monastery. These are the main areas that get super busy, hopefully, by being on-site at 6 am you’ll be finished with the main stuff just as it’s starting to get busy. Use the remainder of the day to explore other areas in the park and enjoy it at a more leisurely pace.
How to view The Treasury from above for FREE!
To see the view of The Treasury from above most people will get ushered up one of the pathways leading up from the open space in front of The Treasury. I never found out the exact price, as I was given so many different variations ranging from 5-10JD to go up by various touts. However, there is a FREE way up to see the view of The Treasury from above as well as a load of other awesome stuff at Petra you won’t want to miss.
Petra by Night – yay or nay?
When you buy your day entry ticket, you’ll be given the option for Petra at Night, it’s another 17JD on top of your day entry. Yes, it’s gimmicky and another way to rinse tourists out of money, but I did really enjoy it.
Petra by Night only happens on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday nights, so if this is something you’re desperate to do, plan your Jordan itinerary around these days.
To sum it up, the whole of The Siq is lit by little lanterns, then the area in front of The Treasury is laid out with mats to sit on, and more candles. There is a bit of traditional entertainment, music, singing before the finale where they light The Treasury up with colour changing floodlights.
So yes, it’s a bit naff, but it was actually really enjoyable, especially if you wait until the back of the queue to walk down The Siq when it’s quieter.
For more in-depth information on visiting Petra at night, check out the official site.
How much does Petra cost?
A single-day ticket for day entry to Petra costs 50JD. If you have the time, I’d seriously recommend buying the 2-day at 55JD or 3-day at 60JD a ticket. TAKE YOUR PASSPORT! The tickets for multiple days will have your name printed on it and they do check this. You can also purchase you Petra by Night ticket now. More about this in a moment.
Where to stay in Petra
If you’re avoiding the insanely priced hotels situated near to the entrance to Petra, then you’ll most likely be staying in the slightly run-down but fully functional nearby town Wadi Musa. It’s a 3km downhill walk from Wadi Musa to the ticket office.
Petra Acomodation - Super Splurge
If you’re looking for the ultimate splurge option, then top of your list needs to be the Mövenpick Resort Petra. Situated just outside the entrance to the archelogical park, this 5-star luxury resort offers guests on-site swimming pool and spa facilities, delicious breakfast, garden and terrace bars & restaurants, stunningly decorated rooms and public areas, free parking and tour desk. Not convinced yet, take a look.
Petra Accomodation - Splurge
If you’re still after a bit of luxury without the pirce tag, then have a read of Jessica’s review above. The 3-Star Sharah Mountains Hotel boasts private rooms with wifi, ensuite facilities with toiletries. Guests can also enjoy the off-site swimming pool and spa facilities at reduced price.
Petra Accomodation - Save
With so many accomodation options surrounding Petra, you’ll also find a ton of budget-friendly places to stay. One of the better ones in the area is Rafiki Hostel. They offer both private rooms as well as dorm rooms. The hostel is located in Wadi Musa, so it’s either a 2km walk to the entrance to Petra, or a short taxi ride. They offer breakfast and wifi in public areas. For a budget place, it’s clean and has a good range of basic facilities.
Day 4 in Jordan - Petra Day 2
Go back into Petra Archelogical site for a second day to hike the trails and see more ruins off-the-beaten-track
There are so many trails in the archaeological park. One of the better walks is up to the High Place of Sacrifice and then come down the back of the cliff following the trail past more ancient relics and rolling landscape. At first, it’s a clear pathway to take, you’ll get to see some of the temples that are seldom visited.
The signage isn’t wonderful and although there is an apparently clear path, it’s not that obvious. I ended up in the dry river bed (it was the widest and clearest route). Find out about other stuff to see in Petra.
Day 5 in Jordan - Wadi Rum Desert
Visit this stunning UNESCO listed desert, home to the Bedouin people. Take a 4x4 ride to see the sites, then camp overnight
Getting to Wadi Rum
Wadi Rum is well connected from the town of Wadi Musa near to Petra. Collectivos run to this area as well as tourist bus and private shuttles arranged by some accomodation in the area. Often the accomodation for Wadi Rum will include pick up and drop off transfers to either Wadi Musa or Aqaba.
What to See at Wadi Rum
The desert of Wadi Rum is stunning and until my recent trip to Jordan, I had no idea this place existed. I knew there was a desert for sure, but beyond that, I knew very little. It is also home to the Bedouin people who have lived in this region for centuries. Their ancestors still reside in the area and now offer camping experiences in Wadi Rum.
Inside the National Park there is a whole multitude of stuff to see, the easiest way to go on one of the 4×4 Jeep safaris where you will see awesome stuff such as Umm Fruth Rock Bridge, a natural bridge formed out of the soft red sandstone rock, the Ancient Nabatean Petroglyphs engraved into the rock faces and the Lawrence of Arabia house which was used in 1962 British film. Some pretty epic stuff!
Wadi Rum also offers dune boarding, rock climbing and extensive hiking trips. Depending on your schedule, this can be done as a day visit although most people decide (and I highly recommend) to stay at least one night in a Bedouin Camp.
Where to Eat in Wadi Rum
Wadi Rum is a desert, so apart from small tent-like establishments dotted about the tourist hubs, which are great for fresh tea! you’re not going to find much. IF you venture into the desert by yourself take some supplies, especially plenty of water. Apart from that, your accomodation will feed you, and lots of delicous food! Your main evening meal, mostl likely, will be cooked in fire pit, in a hole dug in to the sand.
Where to stay in Wadi Rum
Accomodation in Wadi Rum - Splurge
For the ultimate out-of-this-world experience, not much can beat Glamping in the desert. The Wadi Rum Bubble Luxotel offers just that. Stay in a 5-star ‘bubble’ in the middle of the desert. Rooms offer panoramic views, perfect for start-gazing and all mod cons. Seriously, take a look at the photos, you definately need to see these!
Accomodation in Wadi Rum - Save
For a more rustic experience, then take a look at the Seven Wonders Bedouin Camp. The camp offers hot showers and food as well as arranging all your desert excursions. It’s also in close proximity to Little Petra.
Day 6 in Jordan – Wadi Rum
Hike up stunning the rock formations, scramble up the sand dunes and sand-board down or arrange a climbing or abseil trip
With so much to do in Wadi Rum, one day isn’t enough. Make the most of the terrain by organising adventure sports. These can be arranged beforehand or direct at your camp for full or half days.
Either opt for a second night in the desert or continue down to Aqaba in the afternoon and head out and about for a sundowner in the liveliest part of the country.
Day 7 in Jordan – Aqaba
Spend a morning checking out the local fruit n vegetable markets and the bakeries. Eat de-licious local fare down the alleyways of the food streets with the locals, organise your dive or snorkel trip for the next day before hitting the beach for the afternoon.
Getting to Aqaba
If you didn’t arrange transport with your accomodation (most will provide this service) then the next easiest option is to get a taxi to Aqaba.
What to see in Aqaba
Aqaba certainly a city of two halves’ (which is divided by the main road leading into the town), one side, the north is definitely more touristy and westernised. The south has more of a local feel to it. It’s on the southern side of town where you will find more of a local vibe along with some of the cheaper accommodations and eateries.
When you’re finished with breakfast, check out the area near the fruit market. This is certainly the best place to pick up fresh produce, such as fruit and veg along with a multitude of deliciously smelling freshly baked products. A string of bakeries line the street, so be sure to pop your head into at least one of them at least for a sniff of the produce, I assure you, you won’t want to come out empty-handed.
After a leisurely morning head to one of the nearby beaches. The main public beach in Aqaba isn’t all that. It’s quite shingly and not geared up so much for the bikini-clad westerner. Too many onlookers (if you get my drift!). Two options, either pay to go in the private beaches of the high-end hotels or head out of town and further south, where you find the apt named South Beach where it’s a little more secluded
If you’re planning on snorkelling or diving in Jordan, don’t forget to book this today. Around Aqaba, you will find a multitude of dive shops. You are at the main gateway in Jordan to the Red Sea, so take full advantage of this.
Depending on the time of year and day of the week, you’ll find pop-up markets or entertainment near to the centre of the newer town in the evenings.
Where to Eat in Aqaba
True, the shops aren’t quite as glossy as on the tourist side, but this is where the locals eat (if you see a string of locals, it usually means two things; it’s cheap and it tastes delicious. Try the traditional Jordanian breakfast; pickles, bread, a hummus style dip (which you eat with a spoon), an assortment of falafels with a large Turkish coffee – enough to feed 2! All for less than 5JD. I took a big proportion of this as a take-out which they are happy for you to do if you can’t manage to finish it.
Where to Stay in Aqaba
Aqaba Accomodation - Splurge
If you’re after that a hotel that really does have everything on offer then look no further than the Al Manara, Luxury Collection Hotel. With outdoor terraces, gardens, ocean views,private beaches as well as fitness classes, yoga, spa and swimming pools and more.
Aqaba Accomodation - Save
If you’re wanting to save, then Dar Seitti (Grandma’s House ) is a decent budget option. Both dorm rooms and private rooms are available. The hotel/hostel offers wifi in all areas along with a garden and shared kitched facilities.
Day 8 in Jordan – Aqaba (Red Sea)
Go diving or snorkelling in the Red Sea to spot the local marine life, colourful reefs and sunken wrecks
Plan for a day of snorkelling or diving. 2 boat dives in the region are priced at 75JD and then full equipment hire was 25JD. This appears to be the standard price in the area. You could probably bargain a cheaper price if you booked multiple dive trips with the company.
The focus on these dives was to see wrecks, a sunken plane and a tank. Both equally awesome.
The day was nicely drawn out by spending time on a beautiful boat. Relaxing between dives. After dive two, a huge buffet lunch is served before heading back to the mainland late in the afternoon.
Travel back to the north of the country and stay at one of the resorts in the vicinity of the Dead Sea.
Day 9 in Jordan - Dead Sea
Relax and experience the Dead Sea and the out of this world feeling of floating in the mineral-rich waters.
It would be sacrilege to go to Jordan and not experience the Dead Sea, so keep this treat for the final day.
At the Dead Sea, you will have two options here. One is to use the public beach for 20JD, the other is to buy a day pass to one of the hotels. I opted to use the Marriott.
Yes, it was 50JD, BUT that included 25JD worth of food and drink vouchers, towel hire and use of all the facilities, lockers, hot showers, toiletries, sun loungers, the swimming pools, Jacuzzi, the beach, free drinking water, copious amount of mud to slather on a well as WIFI in all the public areas. This was a luxury experience at its finest.
If you are on a budget, then this is a big splurge, but in my honest opinion it was 50JD well spent, I made full use of all the facilities on offer and loved every minute of it and the most perfect way to spend my final day in Jordan
Accommodation in Dead Sea
Dead Sea Accommodation - Splurge
If you’re a day visitor to the area (ask about their day pass), or want to stay and papmer yourself for a little longer, the Dead Sea Marriott Resort & Spa (pictured above) is one of the top resorts in the area. With stunning sea views, a wide rage of eateries on site, countless pools, outdoor and indoor spa facilities, as well as a fully serviced private beach front to the Dead Sea (there’s even a little land train if you are can’t be bothered with the short but steep scenic walk down). On the beach front, you’ll find large buckets of mineral filled mud to slather on your skin, before using one of the sun loungers to relax while it bakes on before hopping into the sea to wash it off. There are also showers, a bar and lifeguard down here. This is one of the top spots for ultimate pamering.
Dead Sea Accommodation - Save
Unfortunately, The Dead Sea region does have a premium price tag on it, you’re going to be hard pushed to find anywhere half decent along the seafront/walking distance. If you’re really on a tight budget, stay at a hotel in Amman or Madaba, use a taxi or public transport, just spend the day here.
Day 10 in Jordan – Amman
Take a stroll through the souks or Rainbow Street to pick up any last minute souvenirs and have a final Turkish Coffee before catching your flight home.
Have a relaxed final day in Amman old town and go souvenir shopping in one of the souks. Drink copious amounts of tasty sage tea or Turkish coffee before waving goodbye to this fantastic little country.
Extending your stay in Jordan
If you are lucky enough to have longer in Jordan, then be sure to add– Madaba, Mount Nebo and Karak to your Jordan itinerary while in the north of the country.
Alternatively, you could do the full 3-day pass at Petra, of stay for even longer at the Bedouin Camps at Wadi Rum.
For nature lovers, check out the various hikes in the Dana Biosphere Reserve, the ancient mozaic town of Madaba or climb Mount Nebo.
For the more adventurous types, you could certainly spend longer lot longer at the Bedouin Camps at Wadi Rum or explored more of the world under the waves with more dives in Aqaba.
This is easily a country to spend more time in, this 10-day whirlwind trip will leave you desperately wanting more. I certainly plan to come back one day.
10 days in Jordan
This ten-day Jordan itinerary will give you a decent feel for what the country has to offer and leave you eager to come back for more. It was a country which kept unveiling even more things to do than I had initially thought.
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I’d love to hear from you about your own Jordan experience, equally if you have any questions then please comment below.