Day 1 - Amman - Meet and Greet - Overnight Amman 5 Star Hotel Arrival times vary for international arrival and therefore no sightseeing is planned today.
Arrive at Amman Airport - Discovery Circle representatives will meet and assist you through immigration, organise your free visa, and guide you through customs and baggage handling. You will then be introduced to you driver who will accompany you to your hotel in Amman approximately 30 - 40 minutes away by car.
Day 2 - Overnight Amman 5 Star Hotel
Sites visited today - Amman (Philadelphia from Roman times) Souk, Markets, Citadel, Amphitheatre and Archaeological Museum
After breakfast in your hotel you will be met by your driver so you can begin a city tour of Amman, the capital of the Hashemite Kingdom. Often referred to as the “White City” because of the white stone used to build houses, Amman offers a contrast between oriental and cosmopolitan. The city tour includes a visit to the Citadal and Amphitheatre dating back to Roman times as well as the Archaeological Museum.
Amman is a vibrant capital and a fantastic city to walk in. The people of Amman are warm, friendly and sincere and will do everything they can to make you feel at home. Full of local cafés, coffee shops and eateries it is a foodies delight. You will get chance to experience the local herb and vegetable markets in the Old Town and taste Knafeh, a traditional Middle Eastern dessert made with filo pastry, soaked in sweet syrup, and layered with cheese and nuts. The best place to eat this in Jordan is from Habeba sweets who have been feeding the people of Amman since 1951. Amman has plenty of restaurants to suit all budgets so with a free evening ahead and a car and driver at your disposal you can head back to your luxury 5 star hotel before heading out for another eating extravaganza.
Day 3 - Overnight Amman 5 Star Hotel
Sites visited today - Ajloun Castle and Jerash Roman City
Transfer to the north of Amman to visit Saracen castle at Ajloun. Driving through the northern part of Amman you will get to see just how large this capital city is. Passing through the Biblical Gilead you will experience a different side of the little desert Kingdom. No desert just rolling hills full of trees and greenery. These differences in climate and topography is part fo the reason why Jordan and its people are so diverse. Ajloun is approximately 1.5 hours north of Amman so plenty of time to speak to the driver and enjoy the ride.
Ajloun Castle was built around the 12th Century by Saladin in his successful campaign to drive the Crusaders from Jordan, which he succeeded in doing in 1189. This is the first of two castle from the Crusader period you will visit on this tour. Ajloun was built to Islamic architecture and sits atop a beautiful mountain with far ranging views. Ajloun is an outstanding example of Arab/Islamic military architecture. After your visit to Ajloun we suggest you stop at the visitor centre and coffee shop that is run and benefits the whole Ajloun community. This is a great example of community tourism at its best.
After your visit to Ajloun you will make the short 20 minute transfer to Jerash. Jerash was part of the Decapolis (ten big Roman cities of the east) and has been called the Pompeii of the East for its unique state of preservation. The city features theatres, churches, temples (Zeus and Artemis), a Nymphaeum and colonnaded streets. In fact there are over 800 columns still standing in Jerash and you can still feel the ruts made by chariots over 2,000 years ago. Jerash is also a centre for Christian Pilgrimages with its numerous early Byzantine churches and mentions in the Bible that Jesus walked through the Decapolis cities, of which Jerash was the biggest and most important in the region.
After you have visited Jerash we will transfer you back to you hotel in Amman. The journey takes approximately 1 hour. You will then be free to explore Amman in the evening or book a table at one of the fantastic restaurants the capital has to offer.
Day 4 - Overnight Petra 4 Star Hotel
Sites visited today - Madaba, Mount Nebo, Kings Highway and Kerak Castle
Depart Amman to visit the mosaic city of Madaba, where the oldest map of the Holy Land exists on the floor of Saint George’s Church. Madaba, or Medeba in antiquity, features many famous mosaics that exist in public and private buildings. After Madaba, a short drive will bring you to Mt. Nebo, the alleged burial site of Moses overlooking the Jordan Valley and the Dead Sea. Here Franciscans have built a structure that protects a 4th and 6th Century Byzantine church.
After visiting Madaba and Mt. Nebo, continue on via the scenic canyons of Wadi Mujib (Arnon’s Valley in the Bible) to the Crusader castle at Kerak. This route is part of the famous Kings Highway and is extremely picturesque. Kerak is a 12th Century hill top fortress features galleries, towers, chapels and ramparts that recall the gallantry of the Crusaders themselves. Unlike Ajloun, Kerak was built by the Crusaders so the architecture is slightly different but both sit on top of hills making them particularly hard to attack.
After visiting Kerak you will head directly to Petra for overnight before you enter the Jewel in Jordan’s Crown The Rose Red City of Petra.
Day 5 Petra - Overnight Petra 4 Star Hotel
Sites visited today - Petra - it deserves a full - day.
After breakfast at your hotel in Petra you will depart for a wonderful day visiting one of the true World Wonders - The Rose Red City of Petra. On arrival at the visitor centre you will meet you private English speaking guide who will spend 2 hours with you highlighting the main elements of the Siq, Treasury and some the other important monuments in Petra.
Winding through the desert, the gates of the past open up to one of the world’s most famous wonders: the ancient city of Petra. Experience the magic of this ancient city, as you are guided through the architectural and spiritual wonders of the Rose City. Entry to th is hidden city is through crack in the rock that is almost 1.2 km long. This is probably the most peaceful and awe inspiring 1.2 kilometre walk anywhere in the world. Re -live the Indiana Jones moment as the Treasury, the most important facade in Petra, reveals itself bit by bit at the end of the Siq. But the Treasury is one of only 800 facades and monuments in Petra including the Theatre, Royal and Silk Tombs and the Monastery, the biggest facade and featured in one of the Transformers films. The Nabatean tombs and monuments in Petra are all hand-carved into the soft sandstone rock and makes Petra the effort of the Nabateans all the more impressive.
This capital of the Nabatean empire was eventually captured by the Romans, who built more traditional buildings including a Cardo (main street) and temples. After the Romans the early Christians came to this impressive city building a church with a fantastic mosaic floor. It was then hidden from time for almost 1,000 years before it was rediscovered in 1812 by the Swiss traveller Johann Ludwig Burckhardt.
Petra and the town that leads to Petra is very touristic city but has very few restaurants. We would therefore recommend you book the evening meal upgrade package in when you stay here.
Day 6 Wadi Rum and The Dead Sea - Overnight Dead Sea 5 Star Resort Hotel
Sites visited today - Wadi Rum and the Dead Sea.
After breakfast at your hotel in Petra we will make the 1. 5 hour drive south to the magical desert of Wadi Rum, made famous by T.E. Lawrence better known as Lawrence of Arabia. The desert of Wadi Rum boasts one of the most spectacular desert landscapes in the world with rolling sand dunes and mountains of sandstone. It has been used by Hollywood for years and has been the backdrop for movies such as Lawrence of Arabia, The Red Planet, Transformers and more recently The Martian with Matt Damon. You will experience all of this and more on your 4x4 tour through the dunes and sandstone mountains of Wadi Rum, which will be led by one of the local, expert Bedouin drivers.
Historically significant for its role in the great Arab Revolt headed by Grand Sharif Hussein, its mystery and charm are sure to captivate you, as it has done with so many visitors before. Lawrence of Arabia describes as “vast, echoing and godlike…..”. A visit to Wadi Rum is truly memorable and one that you will never forget.
After you tour of Wadi Rum you will head to The Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth at more than 400 metres below sea level.
On arrival at the Dead Sea the remainder of the day is free with nothing to do but relax in the oxygen rich air and the super salty, buoyant waters of the Dead Sea. Ten times saltier than sea water, rich in chloride, salts, magnesium and potassium it is the perfect way to unwind after a tour of this incredible country. A float in the Dead Sea, soothe all the aches and pains and will gives you the perfect opportunity to reflect on your time spent in this incredible little Kingdom.
You will overnight at the Holiday Inn Resort on the Dead Sea.
Day 7 - Dead Sea and Airport
Perhaps there is just one last chance, depending on your flight time, to have a soothing float before breakfast and heading to the airport for your flight home.
You will be met at the hole and transferred to the airport where your Discovery Circle Representative will guide you though check-in and lead you to passport control. At this point we wish wave you goodbye, wish you a safe flight and thank you for visiting Jordan with Discovery Circle Tours.
Optional Extra Tours - all transfers included - all based on minimum of 2 people
1. Museums in Amman - Why not add two fantastic museums to your tour of Amman.
The Jordan Museum presents the history and cultural heritage of Jordan in a series of beautifully designed galleries as part of the ongoing story of Jordan’s past, present, and future. The museum serves as a comprehensive national centre for learning and knowledge that reflects Jordan’s history and culture presented in an engaging yet educational way.
The Royal Automobile Museum - a favourite museum of King Abdullah II and visited by all the international dignitaries and guests of the King. The museum is home to the Royal Car collection started by the late King Hussein and not only show the families love of cars but also tells the modern day history of Jordan through some incredible cars. It really shouldn’t be missed whether you like cars or not.
2. Cooking Class and Dinner Learn to cook Jordanian style
After the tour of Amman you will learn how to cook traditional Jordanian food, a real feast, with the help of a fantastic local family at Beit Sitti restaurant and cooking school. You will be taught recipes that have been tried, tested and enjoyed for generations in families grandmothers home, of this engaging family, located in one of Amman’s oldest neighbourhoods. You will start with a main course, accompanying sales and finally a desert that you can then cook at home and impress your family and friends.
3. Al Ayoun Trail (part of the Jordan Trail) - includes transfers and local guide.
After the visit in Ajloun Castle, transfer to Rasun and start a beautiful two hour walk through one of the quietest and most beautiful parts of the Jordanian highlands, Al Ayoun - a valley of olive groves, orchards, and limestone cliffs just north of Ajloun. Beginning at the viewpoint above the village of Rasun, you'll walk through the woods and explore the ruins of early Bronze Age dolmens and a Roman wine press. Your very local guide will provide information on the region, family life and local customs and food which are quite different in this part of Jordan.
4. Wadi Rum Camel Ride - ride majestically through the moonscape of Wadi Rum.
Be led by the local Bedouin who will expertly steer you through the beautiful Wadi Rum. Riding in Rum by camel give you a real sense of scale and how beautiful but also harsh life in the desert can be.
5. Petra through the back door. Enter Petra through one of the oldest hidden entry points, used by the Nabateans and which is now part of the official Jordan Trail.
Enter Petra though the back door via a spectacle but little known or used Bedouin trail through the mountains. The trail enters Petra at the Monastery, Petra’s largest facade. Leaving early and arriving in Petra before the crowds this is one of the most iconic ways to visit the city. By entering Petra via the back door you will walk a total of 16km including sightseeing around the rest of the site, so this is not for the feint hearted.