Photos to Make You Want to Visit Jordan, Petra

beautiful jordan

Lots of people want to visit Jordan to see Petra – one of the 'new seven wonders of the world' – and we can understand why it's one of the most incredible places we've ever been.

why visit jordan

But beautiful Jordan is so much more than just Petra – it's ancient Roman ruins at Jerash, it's exciting cities like Amman, and most of all it's its many many friendly people :) Here are 58 photos to show you how beautiful Jordan is, which will hopefully make you want to visit!

Jerash Photos Jordan

beautiful jordan

Jerash is a city in Jordan, located just 30 miles north of Jordan's capital, Amman. It's been inhabited since the Bronze Age!

It's absolutely covered in Ancient Roman Ruins (read: remnants of the colonizing architecture of the first centralized Empire in Europe, lol)

What was particularly interesting is the way that the modern city has grown next to the ancient ruins, walking down the street on one side you'll have these traditional Jordanian buildings made of limestone:

And right next to them on the other side, you'll have the ruins of a Greco-Roman settlement, Gerasa:

We think this clash of modern and ancient architecture is really thought-provoking together:

Despite only being about 60% excavated, these are still the most well-preserved Roman ruins in the Middle East.

These include the Arch of Hadrian:

A 2nd-century arch erected in honour of Emperor Hadrian's visit (i.e. another waste of energy and working force – read: slave labour – to glorify a tyrant). Then there's the Temple of Artemis, and of course the Oval Plaza:

But there's so much more than that, you can easily spend an afternoon at Gerasa, wandering around and soaking up the history.

Just be sure to bring water with you! Btw, we do recommend using eco-friendly, reusable water bottles.

With the climate, landscape and ruins you could be forgiven for thinking you were in Italy or Greece:

But not for long, since Jordan is so rich with its own history and culture:

traditional jordanian music

Wandering around the Gerasa, we were lucky enough to come across some Jordanians in traditional garb, playing traditional music (probably only for us tourists in case you're wondering how authentic it is for locals to just wander around in the sun playing music in the middle of the day).

Nevertheless, watching them play in the ancient ruins was quite an experience. All in all, Jerash is more than worth a look round, it's just as thought-provoking and intriguing as many Roman/Greek sites that we've seen in Italy/Greece themselves.

Amman photos Jordan

amman photos jordan

Amman is the capital of Jordan, and it too has beautiful ancient ruins. And it has more: 4 million of Jordan's 12 million population live in Amman. This is a city that's exciting and fascinating. Of Jordan's 12 million people, 2 million are refugees, 3/4 from Syria and 1/4 from Iraq. I personally think it's admirable that they've looked after so many people of the world like this. Especially when you consider that Jordan is not a rich country – far from it!

There is no oil in Jordan and it's the 10th worst country in the world for drinking water. The people of Jordan are on a water ration and are only supplied with water once a week. They then store this water in boxes on their roofs which are susceptible to being blown open by the wind and filled with bugs and worse nasties – do not drink the tap water in Jordan!

Jordan is lucky (or unlucky...) to have a good relationship with the USA – they receive a lot of aid including wheat from them. Despite their poor water situation, Jordan has a relatively good healthcare system – there is a medical centre in every town available for all Jordanians. If they are between 6 and 65 they pay just 30% of the medical bill. Everyone else (i.e. younger than 6, older than 65) pays nothing.

90% of Jordan is Muslim and the other 10% is Christian. Our Muslim guide said that there are very good relations between the Muslims and the Christians in Jordan – they respect each other's important festivals and so on, the only real difference they have is that the Christians own all the liquor stores/factories.

Seven Wonders Bedouin Camp Review

Seven Wonders Bedouin Camp Review

To make sure that we reached Petra nice and early the next morning (and to make sure we had a magical, unforgettable night) we stayed at Little Petra Bedouin Camp. I'll tell you, after a day of sightseeing and driving across Jordan, we were ready for some rest and relaxation.

Little Petra Bedouin Camp is the perfect mixture of relaxation and excitement – local flavours and home comforts. For example, they do have hot water, but only in the evening. They serve a traditional dinner and breakfast, and they invite you to share a shisha and stories around the campfire and look at the stars – amazing, thank you very much! When we arrived at night, it was lit up with the light of a thousand fairies candles. In the morning it was still impressive:

With gorgeous, mountainous views all around.

Petra photos Jordan

petra photos jordan

Last and never least: Petra, the Rose City:

Nicknamed the Rose City because the famous tombs and temples are carved into pink sandstone cliffs:

The most famous one of all, of course, being the Treasury:

For the absolute best views of the Treasury, we recommend the 3.5km "Al-Khubtha Trail" which takes you above the Treasury:

A little further than this, you will find a normal shop with shade, cool drinks and a very good angle to look at the Treasury:

But Petra isn't all about the Treasury, other famous spots to see include the Monastery (Ad-Deir), the Great Temple and the Theatre:

For us, some of the most magical (read non-touristy spots) were anywhere and everywhere in-between, where we met local kids, donkeys and dogs:

Not to forget of course some of the most impressive landscapes we've seen in our lives:

At Petra, there are people selling trinkets, and often kids were trying to sell us things too. They were some of the cutest kids on the planet, but child labour is child labour (not cool). We've always been told it's best not to support this by buying from them or giving them anything :(

It's not out of poverty that these kids work – they actually earn more than a Jordanian national average salary – they work because of habit, family organisation, because they hate school (organized miseducation of the masses) and because of a lack of other things to do. If you actually want to help consider donating to reputable charities like Save The Children. If you do buy souvenirs, make sure they are from reputable sellers.

The other ethical problem with Petra is the animal riding – you can ride a donkey, a horse, a horse-drawn carriage or even a camel at Petra, for veryyy "reasonable" prices. We do not agree with any kind of animal exploitation and whilst these animals were far from the worst treated animals we've seen around the world (most of them looked pretty healthy), we still saw them being whipped. Not cool! If you ride them, you are supporting animal cruelty, end of.

But on a positive note, there used to be a lot of people that actually lived in Petra. Later, when it became a UNESCO world heritage site + one of the new seven wonders of the world, these locals were asked to move to a village nearby built for them. But the people didn't want to move out and risk losing business at Petra. So, in the end, it was settled that they'd move out, and would be the only ones allowed to make business in Petra. Now that's nice, isn't it? Locals vs. centralized power 1-0.

One last thing: Petra is surprisingly comfortable to spend the day at. The temperatures in Jordan are sweltering pretty much all year round, but in Petra the mountains and rocks provide shade and neither of us got sunburnt/stroke – yey!

We took this magical trip to Jordan with Abraham Tours on their Best of Israel and Jordan Package, and can only recommend it – find out more in our other posts 18 Reasons to Visit Israel and Is Israel safe (to travel to). So there you have it, 58 photos that will hopefully convince you to visit beautiful Jordan. Have you been to Jordan? What did you think? And if you haven't been, has this post convinced you? :)

P.S.: If you're interested in a way of travelling and getting accommodation cheaply, you might wanna check out house sitting. was kind enough to provide us and our readers with a 10% discount, feel free to click on the link to use it :)

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We overland. We eat plants and fungi. We live outside as much as possible. We are all connected. A female travel blogger overlanding and writing about ecotourism, ethical and sustainable travel, socially conscious travel and housesitting. An online travel magazine since 2015.


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