For travelers looking to explore all that this remarkable country has to offer, here are 17 of the best places to visit in Jordan.
Jordan is an incredible country, full of ancient wonders and modern marvels. From the lush Jordan Valley to the majestic desert landscapes, this Middle Eastern kingdom has something for everyone.
I recently spent 3.5 weeks solo road-tripping around Jordan, which allowed me to explore many of the most incredible sights that many tourists miss during their visit, like the Ajloun Forest Reserve and Wadi Mujib.
Jordan is home to some of the oldest cities in the world, including one of the oldest continually inhabited cities – Jerash.
Whether you’re planning a relaxing Red Sea beach getaway or an exciting expedition into the unknown, these places in Jordan have something special! So pack your bags and prepare for a journey like no other as we explore some of the best places in Jordan!
Often referred to as one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Petra is an ancient city carved directly into sandstone rocks. Petra is one of the most popular attractions in Jordan and for good reason. This once-lost city is full of incredible monuments, tombs, and temples that will take your breath away.
Its iconic Treasury is a must-see for any traveler visiting Jordan, and there’s plenty more to explore. It takes at least one day, maybe two or three days if you take your time, to see the entire city of Petra. Wander through the old streets and alleys, get lost in its mystique, and marvel at its grandeur.
My favorite two hikes in Petra are the Treasury Viewpoint Trail (aka the Al Khubtha Trail) and one of the two trails that go to the Al-Deir – also called “Monastery.” These landmarks are the best places to visit in Petra. I also really enjoyed a horseback ride up to the Place of High Sacrifice. Petra exceeded my expectations!
2. Wadi Rum – The “Valley of the Moon”
The Red Desert of Wadi Rum is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Jordan. It has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its immense beauty and unique geology.
Its red sand dunes and amazing rock formations make for a spectacular backdrop for camping or jeep tours.
Trek up sand dunes and gaze out at the stunning views of the desert’s vastness. Or, spend a night camping under the stars in one of Wadi Rum’s many campsites or Bedouin tents. My overnight stay at Memories Aicha Luxury Camp is one I will never forget.
Wadi Rum is also home to some incredible ancient rock drawings and carvings from Nomadic tribes who lived there thousands of years ago. And if you’re interested in photographing the beautiful red sand or the star-filled night sky, Wadi Rum should definitely be on your list of the best places to visit in Jordan.
3. The Dead Sea
The Dead Sea is the lowest point on Earth, located more than 400 meters below sea level. It’s an incredible place to visit in Jordan.
Floating in the salty, mineral-rich waters of The Dead Sea is an incredibly unique experience that you won’t find anywhere else on Earth. Being able to effortlessly float upon the water’s surface due to its extreme salinity and high mineral content is absolutely surreal and soothing.
The Dead Sea is also incredibly rich in minerals, and its mud has been used for centuries to help heal skin ailments. And don’t forget to pack a good book – the waters are so salty that it’s impossible to sink, which makes for a great reading spot (and funny photo opp)!
4. Wadi Mujib Siq Trail
The Wadi Mujib Siq Trail is one of the top destinations for visitors to Jordan who like to hike. It was one of the highlights of my own trip!
Located near the Dead Sea, this seasonal trail offers stunning canyon views that have been described by many as some of the most beautiful in the world.
This unique hike begins at the Mujib Reserve and follows the path of a narrow river gorge. Don’t forget your swimming gear, because you’ll be hiking (and sometimes swimming) through the water the whole way. You’ll even get a taste of easy-level canyoning with the help of some ropes – it’s fun, and is definitely one of the best places to visit in Jordan.
5. Ma’in Hot Springs
If you’re looking for a unique experience in Jordan, then consider visiting the Ma’in Hot Springs, which you can be easily combined with your visit to the Dead Sea or Wadi Mujib.
Located near the Dead Sea and fed from waterfalls, this natural spring is known for its healing properties and therapeutic benefits.
The hot springs are nestled deep within the mountains of Jordan and have been enjoyed since the days of the Roman empire. You can enjoy the hot springs from the nearby resort, or walk 5 minutes to the public springs.
Looking for Jordan inspo? Check our Jordan pictures now!
6. Dana Biosphere Reserve
The Dana Biosphere Reserve is one of the best places to visit in Jordan, especially for those who want to spend time in the country’s beautiful landscapes. Located in the south of the country, it’s one of the most biodiverse areas in all of Asia and home to over 900 species of plants and animals.
This wonderful reserve offers visitors a chance to explore nature at its finest with hiking trails, wildlife-watching opportunities, and stunning views. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful escape or an adventurous trek through some of the world’s most beautiful landscapes, Dana Biosphere Reserve has something for everyone!
The ancient city of Jerash, which dates back more than 6,500 years ago, is one of the best-preserved and most complete Roman cities in the world.
From its stunning temples and colonnades to its intricate mosaics and theaters, Jerash encapsulates all that is beautiful about classical architecture. Stroll through cobbled streets lined with centuries-old monuments and marvel at the grandeur of these awe-inspiring ruins.
The atmosphere in Jerash feels like stepping into another age altogether – from its majestic views over rolling hillsides to its captivating history, it’s easy to see why so many travelers flock here each year.
I felt like I was back in Italy – it reminded me of a smaller version of Pompeii! This is definitely one of the best places to visit in Jordan and can be easily combined with a visit to Ajloun Castle.
8. Ajloun Castle
Ajloun Castle is one of the best places to visit in Jordan. Perched atop a hilltop in the north of Jordan, this 12th-century castle overlooks lush green hills and provides spectacular views across the surrounding countryside.
Built by Saladin during his reign as Sultan, Ajloun Castle was designed to protect against Crusader invasions and remains an impressive fortress today. With its winding staircases, secret passages, and grand halls, it’s easy to imagine what Ajloun Castle was once like.
Visitors can explore the castle’s many levels, discovering hidden chambers and learning about its fascinating history along the way. From panoramic views across rolling hills to serene strolls through ancient ruins – there’s something for everyone at Ajloun Castle!
9. Ajloun Forest Reserve
Ajloun Forest Reserve is an incredible place to visit in Jordan and one of the best nature reserves in the region.
Located a 1-hour drive north of Amman, this 13 square kilometer reserve is home to many unusual animals such as the Striped Hyena, Crested Porcupine, and Stone Marten. It has several different hiking trails to choose from of varying levels and distances.
During springtime, visitors can explore the stunning wildflower displays that carpet the area – from drifts of anemones and rockroses to other beautiful blooms.
For those looking for a more immersive experience, there are also wooden cabins where you can stay overnight. It can also be easily combined with a visit to nearby Ajloun Castle or to Jerash.
10. Mount Nebo
Located just six miles from the city of Madaba, this holy mountain has been an important pilgrimage site since biblical times and offers stunning views across the entire region.
It’s said that Moses was granted a view of the Promised Land from Mount Nebo’s summit, and it’s easy to see why – Mount Nebo provides breathtaking panoramic vistas over nearby Jericho, Jerusalem, and beyond (when the sky is clear).
Today, visitors can explore a preserved monastery complex atop Mount Nebo as well as ancient mosaics inlaid into its walls. The impressive remains are a testament to the long history of people who have visited here throughout time – making it one of the best places to visit in Jordan!
11. The Baptism Site of Jesus Christ
The Baptism Site of Jesus Christ in Jordan is an important pilgrimage site and worth a visit if you’ll be in Jordan for longer than a week. Located on the banks of the River Jordan, this sacred location marks where Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist.
Today, visitors can explore ancient ruins that date back over 2,000 years ago as well as visit nearby chapels and churches built in honor of this special place. The atmosphere here is peaceful and serene – with breathtaking views across rolling hillsides and lush green landscapes – making it one of the most beautiful places to visit in Jordan!
Located 20 miles south of Amman, the ancient town of Madaba is home to the oldest surviving map of Palestine and its neighboring territories – making it an essential stop for any history buff!
The town itself is small and picturesque, with plenty of charming cafes and shops. It’s also easy to get from Madaba to other places in Jordan – making it a great place to stay overnight if you’re on a road trip.
The highlight here is the stunning mosaic map built right into the floor of an ancient church rediscovered in 1884. This incredible piece of art and the history it represents will take your breath away.
13. Karak Castle
Karak Castle is a great place to visit in Jordan for anyone looking to explore the country’s history. Built in the 1140s, this large crusader castle stands on a high hilltop and provides spectacular views across the surrounding countryside.
With winding staircases, secret passages, and grand halls, it’s easy to imagine why Karak Castle was once considered impenetrable.
Visitors can explore its many levels, discovering hidden chambers and learning about its fascinating history along the way.
You can easily hire a guide at the gate who will provide invaluable insight into this ancient fortification, which I recommend since there is very little information posted around the castle. There are some restaurants near the entrance if you get hungry, and it costs 3 JD to park.
14. King’s Highway
The King’s Highway is an amazing place to visit in Jordan that has been a part of the country’s history for thousands of years.
This ancient highway connects Syria and the Gulf of Aqaba by way of what is now Jordan, and it was mentioned in the Old Testament.
The remarkable road was renovated by Roman emperor Trajan (reigned 98-117 CE), making it an even more important thoroughfare during the Crusades. Today, visitors can explore numerous fortified castles still standing along its route, each with its own unique story to tell about this historic journey.
If you’re getting around Jordan with a rental car as I did, then you’ll likely be driving the King’s Highway at some point, as it’s still one of the most convenient ways to get around the country. It’s not uncommon to see camels and other animals along the desert highway, so keep your eyes peeled!
15. Roman Theater in Amman
Built during the reign of Emperor Antonius Pius in the 2nd century AD, this magnificent Roman theater offers visitors a glimpse into ancient history and culture.
Not only is it one of the best places to visit in Jordan, but you’ll get a good workout when you’re climbing up and down the ancient steps.
The theater is still used today — concerts, plays, and other performances are regularly held here throughout the year.
The theater itself has been well preserved over time; its impressive stone arches still stand tall and provide breathtaking views of Amman’s skyline.
Visitors can explore the many levels of this stunning structure and learn about its fascinating past along the way. With a capacity of 6500 people, it would have once hosted some grand spectacles!
16. Amman Citadel
Located in the heart of the city, this ancient fortress is steeped in history and provides stunning views across the entire region. From the Citadel’s lofty heights, visitors can take in all of Amman’s beauty – from its bustling markets to its modern skyline.
The Citadel itself has been occupied by various civilizations throughout time; it was first built by the Romans but also served as an important stronghold during the Crusades. Today, you can explore ruins that date back centuries, including ancient temples and Byzantine churches.
There are also plenty of artifacts on display at the site’s museum – perfect for those who want to learn more about Jordan’s fascinating past! The Citadel is one of the best places to visit in Amman and can be combined with a visit to the Roman Theater.
Located on the Red Sea, the beautiful coastal city of Aqaba boasts some of the best snorkeling and scuba diving in the world. With crystal clear waters and a diverse array of marine life, Aqaba offers visitors an unforgettable experience that they won’t soon forget.
The area around Aqaba is home to some of the most spectacular coral reefs in all of Jordan, making it one of the best places to visit in Jordan for both novice and experienced divers alike. With its stunning beaches and vibrant culture, Aqaba is definitely one destination you don’t want to miss out on while traveling through Jordan – you’re going to need some rest after all the exploring!
Aqaba has an airport that may be a convenient option for travelers.
Wrap-Up: Best Places to Visit in Jordan
Jordan is an amazing destination for travelers looking to explore the Middle East. With its stunning landscapes, diverse culture, and ancient relics, it’s easy to see why this country is so popular among tourists.
From the Lost City of Petra to the arid desert of Wadi Rum, there’s something unique and special around every corner. From the hustle and bustle of Amman to the tranquil waters of Aqaba, Jordan is sure to impress.
These great places to visit in Jordan should definitely be at the top of your list!
Let us know in the comments which are your favorite, and any other places in Jordan you visit during your trip.
Cat runs the travel blog Cat is Out of the Office.