How to spend 8 days in Jordan (with map & costs)

How to spend 8 days in Jordan with map and costs

How to spend 8 days in Jordan (with map & costs)

Jordan is getting more and more popular among travelers of all types. After visiting the country myself, I can completely understand this trend and highly recommend you to visit as well! 😉

Following is, in my opinion, a perfect itinerary to get the most out of your week in Jordan. It includes 6 full days and 2 travel days. I’ve also added some extras (colored in orange on the map), which you can add in case you have an extra day or two 😉 First you will see a travel map with the marked route and in the end, there’s a full cost overview for this trip.

Your guide to Jordan: the perfect 8-day itinerary

On this map you can find a full travel route with added extra stops, in case you have a bit more time:

Day 1: Arrive to Jordan ~ from Aqaba to Wadi Musa

Take a morning flight and arrive at Aqaba’s King Hussein International airport in the early afternoon. Pick up a hire car at one of the renting stations at the airport (Avis, Europcar, Dollar are some that have “offices” at the airport; check your renting options here). Make sure to download offline maps or either bring or hire a GPS device. Alternatively, buy a local SIM card at the airport to have mobile data (my choice). Drive towards Wadi Musa. Since it’s your first day in Jordan and you’re probably not used to Jordanian way of driving, their speed bumps and police checkpoints just yet, add extra 50% of driving time as per Google Maps.

Delicious dinner in Mussa Spring Hotel
Delicious dinner in Mussa Spring Hotel
Hotel prepared gluten free flat bread for me! 😊
Hotel prepared gluten free flat bread for me! 😊

Where to stay in Wadi Musa:

Wadi Mussa is not a large city, but it has plenty of sleeping options available. We were booking hotels only one week before arrival within the high season, that’s why we weren’t left with many options. We booked 2 nights at Mussa Spring Hotel, which ended up being a great choice. Rooms are not luxurious, but you won’t need to break a bank for a 2-night stay. In addition, they got me gluten-free flat bread for dinner and breakfast (ordered in advance), and they prepared breakfast packages, as we left early to visit Petra. If you want to be as close to Petra as possible, Petra Guest House Hotel, Petra Moon Hotel and Movenpick Resort Petra are the closest ones (but also on a more expensive note).

Total drive: Aqaba ~ Wadi Musa

Around 130 km / around 2.5 hours via Desert Hwy

Day 2 & 3: Take time to explore Petra

Reserve days two and three to slowly explore Petra. Get up early in the morning to be at the Siq followed by Treasury before the tours arrive. You need to get your Jordan Pass verified at Petra Visitor Center, which opens at 6 a.m. It’s worth cutting the sleep – the place is magical when it’s almost tourist-free! ✨ At the end of day one, visit Petra Museum to learn about the Nabatean Kingdom and details, which you will pay attention to the next day. If possible, visit Petra on Monday, Wednesday or Thursday – that’s when Petra by Night takes place. Unfortunately, I cannot say if it’s worth the money or not, as we haven’t crossed this off our bucket list. Be sure not to skip Monastery! Before you leave the area, stop by at Little Petra.

Siq revealing the Treasury
Siq revealing the Treasury
Here is where most visitors fall in love with Petra
Here is where most visitors fall in love with Petra

At the end of day three drive towards your hotel near the Dead Sea. Relax at the pool in the evening.

Additional info:

Wear comfortable shoes and clothes, as you’ll be walking a lot. We did more than 47.500 steps in 2 days! Also bear in mind that Petra is full of high places (that, by the way, offer magnificent views), which means a little bit of hiking is involved. Routes to those places are not secured and are sometimes slippery – use your hands to help yourself climbing. Also don’t forget about sun protection (SPF + hat).

Request:

Please don’t ride donkeys or camels, if you’re capable of walking. It’s better to take it slow then to hurt the animals.

'Royal Tombs' are one of the most impressive places in Petra
'Royal Tombs' are one of the most impressive places in Petra
It's always tea time in Jordan!
It's always tea time in Jordan!

Where to stay at the Dead Sea:

Area of the Dead Sea is lacking budget options. We stayed at Grand East Hotel Resort & Spa and it was the most expensive hotel we stayed at while in Jordan, but it was worth it. All hotels charge between 20-50 JD to access their private beach. There are some ‘public beaches’, however, I recommend you to spend a few extra bucks and stay one night in one of the resorts. It will for sure be pricier then a night in Madaba, but you’ll have the Dead Sea at your doorstep and you’ll have private access to the sea at no extra charge.

Total drive: Wadi Musa ~ the Dead Sea

Around 200 km / around 3.5 hours via Kings Hwy

Extras:

Make a few stops along the way from Petra to the Dead Sea – The Lowest Point on Earth Museum, Shoubak Castle and Al-Karak Castle. They are all included in Jordan Pass and will in total take you a bit more than half a day.

Monastery was almost empty in time of our visit
Monastery was almost empty in time of our visit

Day 4: Floating in the Dead Sea

The Dead Sea is actually not a sea but a salt lake. Floating in it is a great experience, so I highly recommend you to plan a bit more than half a day for this. Beach at the hotel we stayed at opened at 8:30 a.m., so we planned an earlier breakfast and packed all our things already before we went to the beach. Normally you’ll get towels, so you don’t need to bring your own. Find a perfect spot under a sunshade to drop your things and enjoy it! 😊 Don’t leave before covering yourself with Dead Sea Mud – it’s supposed to have several benefits for skin and body. In the late afternoon drive towards Amman.

Floating in the Dead Sea is funny experience
Floating in the Dead Sea is funny experience
Covered with Dead Sea Mud 🙈
Covered with Dead Sea Mud 🙈

Where to stay in Amman:

We were discussing quite a while whether we want to drive in Amman or not and have in the end decided not to. For this reason we booked a hotel outside the city. We booked a twin room in Larsa Hotel but we got a nice free upgrade to junior suite! 😁 After seeing the traffic in Amman in reality (it was Sunday), we were a bit sceptic about our decision about driving, but hey… we got to test Uber in Amman as well 😉 In case you would like to stay in the city center, Amman Pasha Hotel and The House Boutique Suites have good ranking score on Trip Advisor.

Total drive: the Dead Sea ~ Amman

Around 50 km / around 1 hour

Extras:

If you have a few extra days, visit Madaba and Mount Nebo on your way to Amman.

Private access to the sea
Private access to the sea

Day 5: Amman, capital of Jordan

Amman is not only a capital of Jordan, it’s also the most populous city in Jordan.

Amman is not only the capital of Jordan but also the most populous city in the country. Look around before digging into history and starting a city tour in Amman Citadel – you will see a concrete jungle without an end. Do an Amman walking tour and explore the ancient sites (around 3 km, 4-5 hours). Finish your tour in time for early supper at Hashem Restaurant Downtown, where you’ll try their famous falafel with hummus. Delicious! 😋

Extras:

Jerash and Ajloun Castle are about an hour drive from Amman. Add an extra day to visit both. Both are included in Jordan Pass.

Amman is a concrete jungle
Amman is a concrete jungle
Amman Citadel offers great views
Amman Citadel offers great views

Day 6: Long drive from Amman to Aqaba

Get up early in the morning and start your 4-hour drive toward Aqaba after breakfast. Desert Highway is not that scenic, but it’s quite easy to drive. There are many road works, which means soon this will be one of the finest roads to drive 😉 Head to lunch when you arrive to Aqaba. Bring your beach things already with you, so you can go directly to Al-Ghandour Beach (public beach, no entrance fee) for a quick dip in the Red Sea. After drying up, pay a short visit to Aqaba castle, which is just a few steps away. If you have extra time, you can visit the Aqaba museum. Shortly before sunset take a short stroll to Gaadet Jeeran – enjoy colorful skies, shisha (try watermelon & mint!) and a cold drink.

Public beach in Aqaba
Public beach in Aqaba

Where to stay in Aqaba:

Aqaba is small but I recommend you to stay near bus station – in this way you’ll have the imporant things within walking distance. We stayed at Al Qidra Hotel which has a nice location, however, I can’t really praise the breakfast and AC sound (noisy during the night) 😬 In the same street there are Double Tree by Hilton Hotel and Captain’s Hotel (which has a wonderful coffee place in the ground floor! 😍). One of the best valued hotels with private sea access is Movenpick Resort & Residences.

Total drive: Amman ~ Aqaba

Around 330 km / around 4 hours via Desert Hwy (without stops)

Reality of Aqaba beach ~ palm trees, soft sand and sea breeze with cargo ships in the background
Reality of Aqaba beach ~ palm trees, soft sand and sea breeze with cargo ships in the background
Aqaba castle
Aqaba castle

Day 7: Follow steps of Bedouins in Mars-like desert of Wadi Rum

Wadi Rum is one of the most amazing places in Jordan, so book a one day-one night tour to get the best out of the desert and your time in Jordan. In the morning have breakfast, then leave Aqaba and drive to the meeting point of your camping site. Some will meet you at Wadi Rum Visitor Center, others in Wadi Rum Village. Once your tour starts, enjoy the Bedouin tea, admire the views over red sand and most importantly, keep it simple and easy. For one day try to live like Bedouins.

Jeep tour in Wadi Rum
Jeep tour in Wadi Rum
Stargazing ✨
Stargazing ✨

Where to stay in Wadi Rum:

We have done a whole research on camps in Wadi Rum and decided to book a tour with Rum Stars Camp in the end. We booked directly through their website and received instant confirmation. Communication from their side was excellent. Tour followed the same route as others, so probably there’s not much difference in the program between different camps. Tent and facilities were amazingly clean and comfortable. Dinner was delicious – we had traditional zerb (meat and vegetables slowely cooked in an underground oven). Yummy! 😋 In the evening we had the opportunity to talk to one of the owners about the Bedouin life. The only bad side was they confirmed gluten-free menu for me, but I got a contaminated lunch 😬 Everything else was ok.

Total drive: Aqaba ~ Wadi Rum

Around 70 km / around 1 hour

Bedouin with camels
Bedouin with camels

Day 8: Time to say “إلى اللقاء” (until we meet again)

Wake up early to catch the sunrise – colors are gorgeous! Normally you’ll be finished with your Wadi Rum tour at 8 a.m. If you have an afternoon flight, head to Aqaba for an early lunch and stroll around the city to catch a relaxed vibe before heading to the airport 🌴 Don’t forget to refuel your car and spend most of your JDs before you leave the city. Airport of Aqaba is small and has no ‘real’ shopping options, so if you’re not willing to pay 7 JDs for a bag of chocolate candy, spend your money already before. Keep some change, as it’s a nice souvenier 😉

Total drive: Wadi Rum ~ Aqaba (Airport)

Around 70 km / around 1 hour

Lunch in Aqaba ~ Chicken Tajine (gluten free)
Lunch in Aqaba ~ Chicken Tajine (gluten free)
Lunch in Aqaba ~ Chicken Kebab Sandwich
Lunch in Aqaba ~ Chicken Kebab Sandwich

Jordan Itinerary: Costs (2 travelers)

Airplane Tickets
426,96 €
Direct flight from Venice to Aqaba with EasyJet - FlexFare with 2 x 23kg hold bag, purchased seat, speedy boarding, fast lane etc. during holidays in the departing region
Hotels
363,81 €
Hotel range 3*-4* - all including breakfast (Tour to Wadi Rum excluded, see below)
Tour
170,26 €
One Day & One night Jeep tour - Classic Bedouin Tour with Rum Stars Camp (all inclusive)
Food & Drinks
136,30 €
Food and drinks in restaurants, including coffee, sweets, snacks and drinking water
Rental Car
219,94 €
automatic gear, full insurance (no deposit taken at car pick up)
Fuel
83,15 €
Fuel price (95): 1,05 JD/L
Entrance Fees (Jordan Pass)
197,22 €
Jordan Explorer - 2 consecutive visit days to Petra
SIM card
30,00 €
10 GB of mobile data, 15 min local calls, 15 min international calls, 5 SMS
Transport
10,82 €
Three drives with Uber in Amman
Souvenirs
25,81 €
Dates, tea and sweets for family and us 🙂
Parking
59,00 €
Parking at VCE airport at long term parking (Parking Zone 6)
Tolls
20,60 €
Tolls in Italy
TOTAL
1.743,87 €

Note: we have a yearly travel health insurance which is not included in above cost list.

Have a great trip and hope you’ll enjoy Jordan at least as much as I did!

Thank you so much for reading!

Love,

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