Situated on the southern tip of Jordan overlooking the Red Sea’s Gulf of Aqaba, DoubleTree by Hilton Aqaba is a 5 star hotel and centrally located in the heart of the business district in Aqaba, Jordan. King Hussein International Airport (AQJ) is less than 15 minutes from this Jordan hotel, where you will be welcomed with a DoubleTree chocolate chip walnut cookie.
DoubleTree By Hilton Hotel Aqaba features contemporary Italian design, our spacious guest rooms and suites provide a peaceful retreat with views of the city or the Red Sea. Enjoy a 32-inch flat screen TV, complimentary WiFi and a large desk. Superior rooms provide private balconies furnishing stunning views of the Red Sea.
‘Jordan is spectacular, safe & friendly’ (The Guardian)
Giant gorge crevices leading to ancient wonders and colossal sandstone slabs that swallow you up. You’re always on the brink of uncovering something spectacular with a holiday in Jordan. You’ll be on your own real life Indiana Jones discovery as the rocks give way to a tantalising glimpse of the Red Rose City. This is Petra, one of the world’s most treasured relics. Jordan has a subtropical climate with hot, dry summers and cooler winters. Jordan is a gold mine of history deep in the desert. It lies humbly under the radar for most travellers, even though it has an arsenal of phenomenal historic sites definitely worth bragging about. This is where you’ll find Petra, the prehistoric capital cut into a rock face; Amman, home to a Citadel that makes it one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world; the parched, Mars-like desert of Wadi Rum; and important biblical sites including Bethany Beyond the Jordan and Mount Nebo.
Dead Sea Swim
Pick up from your hotel in Aqaba and head to the lowest point on earth for a 3-hour swim & lunch at Amman Tourisst Beach Resort (This public facility goes under the full title of Amman Beach Tourism Resort, Restaurant & Pools. The beach, 2km south of the main resort strip, gives affordable access to the Dead Sea. The grounds are attractively landscaped and the beach is clean, with sun umbrellas and freshwater showers. There are also a number of swimming pools, a restaurant, some drinks stalls, basketball courts and a small amusement park. It gets very busy at weekends (especially Friday afternoon and Saturday morning). The Dead Sea is an endorheic lake located in the Jordan Rift Valley, a geographic feature formed by the Dead Sea Transform (DST). This left lateral-moving transform fault lies along the tectonic plate boundary between the African Plate and the Arabian Plate. It runs between the East Anatolian Faultzone in Turkey and the northern end of the Red Sea Rift offshore of the southern tip of Sinai. It is here that the Upper Jordan River/Sea of Galilee/Lower Jordan River water system comes to an end. Upon completion, transfer to your hotel in Aqaba for drop off.
Pick up from your hotel in Aqaba to explore Wadi Rum ( adi Rum is home to the Zalabia Bedouin who, working with climbers and trekkers, have made a success of developing eco-adventure tourism, now their main source of income. The area is now one of Jordan’s important tourist destinations, and attracts an increasing number of foreign tourists, particularly trekkers and climbers, but also for camel and horse safari or simply day-trippers from Aqaba or Petra. In recent years, its luxury camping retreats have spurred more tourism to the area as well. Popular activities in the desert environment include camping under the stars, riding Arabian horses, hiking and rock-climbing among the massive rock formations. ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) and Jeeps are also available and new camps have opened that offer adequate accommodation for tourists.) on a 1.30 hour jeep ride into the Jordanian desert! Wadi Rum was best described by T.E. Lawrence as ‘Vast, echoing and god-like’, and by the locals as ‘Valley of the Moon’. Upon completion, transfer to your hotel in Aqaba for drop off.
Pick up from your hotel in Aqaba for a visit to the Nabatean Red Rose city of Petra, around one and half hour drive.
Petra, originally known as Raqmu, is a historical and archaeological city in southern Jordan. Petra lies on the slope of Jabal Al-Madbah in a basin among the mountains which form the eastern flank of Arabah valley that run from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba. Petra is believed to have been settled as early as 9,000 BC, and it was possibly established in the 4th century BC as the capital city of the Nabataean Kingdom. The Nabataeans were nomadic Arabs who invested in Petra’s proximity to the trade routes by establishing it as a major regional trading hub.
The trading business gained the Nabataeans considerable revenue and Petra became the focus of their wealth, drawing the envy of its neighbors. The earliest recorded historical reference to Petra was when the Greek Antigonids raided the city in 312 BC. The Nabataeans were, unlike their enemies, accustomed to living in the barren deserts, and were able to repel attacks by utilizing the area’s mountainous terrain. They were particularly skillful in harvesting rainwater, agriculture and stone carving. Petra flourished in the 1st century AD when its famous Khazneh structure–believed to be the mausoleum of Nabataean King Aretas IV–was constructed, and its population peaked at an estimated 20,000 inhabitants.
Although the Nabataean Kingdom became a client state for the Roman Empire in the first century BC, it was only in 106 AD that they lost their independence. Petra fell to the Romans who annexed and renamed Nabataea to Arabia Petraea. Petra’s importance declined as sea trade routes emerged, and after a 363 earthquake destroyed many structures. The Byzantine Era witnessed the construction of several Christian churches, but the city continued to decline, and by the early Islamic era became an abandoned place where only a handful of nomads lived. It remained unknown to the world until it was rediscovered in 1812 by Johann Ludwig Burckhardt.
The city is accessed through a 1.2 kilometres (0.75 mi) long gorge called the Siq, which leads directly to the Khazneh.
Famous for its rock-cut architecture and water conduit system, Petra is also called the Rose City due to the color of the stone out of which it is carved. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1985. UNESCO has described it as “one of the most precious cultural properties of man’s cultural heritage”. In 2007, Al-Khazneh was voted in as one of the New7Wonders of the World. Petra is a symbol of Jordan, as well as Jordan’s most-visited tourist attraction. Tourist numbers peaked at 1 million in 2010, the following period witnessed a slump due to regional instability. However, tourist numbers have picked up recently, and around 600,000 tourists visited the site in 2017.
Petra is one of the 7 world wonders and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Enter the city through 1KM long narrow gorge which is flanked either side by 80m high cliffs! Notice the dazzling colors and formations of the rocks. The site is massive, and contains hundreds of elaborated rock-cut tombs, a treasury, Roman-style theatres, temples, sacrificial altars and colonnaded streets. Upon completion, transfer back to your hotel in Aqaba for drop off.
Excursions Itinerary – This is a sample of the excursions itinerary which may differ slightly to the actual experience when you travel depending on time of year, weather and other unforeseen factors.