Jordan with kids: 5 family activities!
A trip to Jordan with kids is fun! It is one of the safest countries in the Middle East and there is enough to see to have a good time for at least a week and a half. We visited the country in combination with neighboring Israel and visited several places in this beautiful country. Following our visit to the country, we list the best activities you can do in Jordan with kids!
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Jordan with kids: knowing in advance
You can visit Jordan with kids just fine, but there are some things to consider. We list some of them.
– you need a little more than a week to explore the highlights of Jordan with kids. We explored the country ourselves in conjunction with a trip to Israel, but in about ten days you can already see much of the country. You can choose to go to the country on a short kid’s vacation, but we would recommend leaving as early as Friday, for example, and not coming home until Sunday evening, so you will be in the country for nine full days.
The May vacation is an ideal vacation to visit the country, as you have two weeks to do so. It’s just over a four-hour flight from Amsterdam so that’s not too bad. By the way, in the winter months it is not warm in Jordan and only about ten degrees.
– keep in mind when Ramadan falls when planning a trip to Jordan with kids. So we hadn’t done that and we still had quite a few problems with that. For example, then many eateries are closed during the day and there is almost nowhere to eat or drink. We could only pick up food at MacDonalds in Aqaba in the afternoon to take with us, but then again, with that food we couldn’t easily get past the security at our hotel.
However, it is a beautiful moment when everyone is sitting in a restaurant waiting until they can eat and everyone is eating together. Be sure to avoid this period if you are visiting Jordan with kids.
– it is possible to explore the country by public transport, but with kids it is much better to rent a car. The roads are fine and generally not super crowded on the road (except in the big cities like Amman).
– The recommended vaccinations by the GGD for the country are DTP and Hepatitis A. Keep this in mind in advance. You also need a visa, but you can buy that on the spot. By the way, you can also purchase the Jordan Pass and then you won’t need a visa with this pass. We will tell more about this later.
Jordan with kids #1: Petra
Almost every tourist visiting the country of Jordan will visit Petra. Petra was voted one of the new seven wonders of the world a few years ago, and quite rightly so! This ancient city built in the desert is beautiful to visit and also very photogenic. Of course, you have to keep in mind that it can be very crowded and especially hot in certain summer months. To avoid the crowds and heat as much as possible, it’s best to get out with your kids as early as possible. Most kids wake up early, so leave for Petra right away!
The entire city was carved out of red rock and was very rich 2,000 years ago. If you want to visit Petra it is best to purchase the Jordan Pass. With this pass, you can visit dozens of attractions in the country “for free,” and your visa will also cost nothing. The entrance to Petra and the visa together are already more expensive than purchasing the Jordan Pass. And then you can also go to all kinds of other attractions around the country. You can order the Jordan Pass online here. By the way, don’t forget to bring your passport, as you will always need it for this attraction.
The city of Petra is huge, but there are a number of sights that are really worth seeing. Not everything of the city is open to tourists either. Especially with kids, we would focus on the highlights of the city! The most famous place is Treasury. This place is actually seen in all the pictures if you search on the search term Petra.
In addition, you have the Royal Tombs, Monastry and the Siq. We always use the app maps.me to orient ourselves through a city, and you can also pinpoint these places ahead of time in the app. The app does not require WIFI, making it super handy for getting your bearings around town!
By the way, it is quite a bit of a walk to the various sights and there are several animals you can make the journey with. Of course, you have to pay for this (despite them sometimes saying it’s free), but we walked everything ourselves.
It may be a bit far with small children, but bring a carrier with which to carry the kids. We didn’t think the beasts looked super fit so we don’t really recommend riding them. Of course, it is smart to give your kids good shoes and not flip-flops.
By the way, it is also possible to visit a smaller version of Petra: Little Petra. This part is a lot less frequented by tourists and from here it is also possible to walk to the sight Monastry. Of course, you can also visit Petra with a guide. At the visitor center, you can arrange for a guide to show you around this ancient city.
Of course, you can visit Petra in two days with kids. The cost is almost the same and then you can choose to go for a few hours in the morning and spend the rest of the day lounging on the pool. For more tips and facts about this sight, check out the blog Visiting Petra.
Jordan with kids #2: Wadi Rum
A second sight not to be missed during a trip to Jordan with kids is the Wadi Rum desert. This is truly one of the most beautiful deserts in the world and we explored the desert on a day trip from the town of Aqaba, where our hotel with swimming pool was located. In retrospect, we also would have liked to spend a night in this beautiful desert.
By the way, these trips are offered all around the desert. No need to worry that there will be no more trips to book. After all, the desert is huge. You can choose to tour alone with your family or with a group. Of course, the latter is a lot cheaper. In doing so, you will take a 4×4 jeep into the desert. Having your own rental car is not suitable and we would advise against it.
You can drive by rental car to Wadi Rum village which is near the desert and from there most tours depart into the desert. Of course, it is also possible to spend the night here in a Bedouin tent. A super nice experience to sleep in the desert like this. Usually dinner and breakfast are then included in the price.
Wadi Rum is not only a sandy desert, but also has many dunes and rock formations. For kids, of course, a great area to play. You can still find plenty of traces of the former inhabitants: the Nabataeans, in the desert. Thus, a tour takes you past ancient petroglyphs of the former inhabitants and they are certainly special to see.
In the desert itself, they have several attractions that they show during a tour. Several unusual rock formations next to each other or in the shape of a mushroom. You also have some beautiful rocks in the shape of an arch. Because of the red rocks and the light falling on them, the color of the rocks also keeps changing, giving you different photos.
In the desert you have a good chance of encountering ancient desert dwellers with a whole group of camels as well. For kids, of course, it’s super interesting to get a closer look at these animals. Of course, there will be frequent stops along the way to have a pot of tea. We found visiting this desert to be a really beautiful experience!
Jordan with kids #3: Amman
You can hardly ignore the capital city of Amman when touring Jordan with kids. For most travelers, this is the city they fly to by plane. The city’s main attraction is the Amman Citadel. You will find remains of the ancient Romans here, but we can imagine that this is a little less interesting with kids. You also have an ancient Roman theater, but of course that is kind of the same as the Citadel of Amman.
So are there any specific sights to do in Jordan’s capital city with kids? Yes there certainly are. For example, there is a fun children’s museum in town, where kids can play and discover a lot. It is a combination of all kinds of experiments, creative workshops and just plain fun. Especially with young kids, you can have a great time here for half a day.
In addition, it is fun to take a tour of the center and visit a souk, for example. These are colorful markets. For example, you have souk Mango which is close to the Roman theater and, for example, the Gold Souk, where you can find mostly jewelry. On that note, it’s always fun to browse around one of these markets when touring Jordan with kids.
Jordan with kids #4: Dead Sea
You can also visit the Dead Sea in Jordan with kids. We hesitated whether to include this sight in our list, because more often than not the Dead Sea looks more relaxing than it really is. This is because you float in the water because it is one-third salt and that this makes the water much heavier than normal. In addition, it is the lowest place in the world, being 427 meters below sea level.
This makes the sea feel a little sticky and wounds on your body can hurt quite a bit. In addition, make sure your kids do not rub their eyes with their hands if they have been in the water. Of course, being able to float in the sea is quite a cool experience with kids, but don’t expect to spend hours by the sea, as the sea is not suitable for that. By the way, don’t put on the latest swimwear either, as there is a chance that these clothes will be very discolored. The same goes for jewelry.
By the way, we also saw people rubbing themselves all over with the mud from the Dead Sea. It can have a good effect on your skin. The Dead Sea is best planned at the end of your trip through Jordan. The Dead Sea is accessible mainly from resorts, and these resorts are three-quarters of an hour drive away from the airport. This allows you to relax at a resort with your kids on your last day, visit the Dead Sea and then drive to the airport.
From the following resorts you can visit the Dead Sea in Jordan with kids:
- Dead Sea Spa Hotel
- Mövenpick Resort
- Dead Sea Marriot Resort & Spa
- Hilton Dead Sea Resort
- Crowne Plaza
Jordan with kids: aqaba
If you are looking for a place in Jordan with kids where you can take a break at the beach and where you have several resorts with large swimming pools then you should be in the south of the country in Aqaba. We spent most of our time here in Jordan, and from this resort we also visited Petra and the Wadi Rum desert.
By the way, in addition to Aqaba, you also have a tourist village a bit to the south called Tala Bay. You have plenty of fine resorts here. We ourselves slept at the Double Tree Hilton hotel in Aqaba. This was a nice hotel with large pool and private beach. You really have to go here for the sun and relaxation, as there is not super much to do in the town itself.
It is possible to snorkel in the sea here, although you should not imagine too much of this snorkeling either. In addition, it is fun to walk around Aqaba. Here you can also visit a souk and have some food and drinks. We walked into town every day to get something to eat in the evening. Aqaba is a great place to stay in Jordan with kids for a few days to relax a bit.
Where to stay in Jordan with kids?
While traveling through Jordan with kids, you will sleep in several places around the country. For example, we ourselves visited the Wadi Rum desert from Aqaba and also Petra, but of course you can sleep near these sights. For most tourists, a visit to the capital Amman will also be among the places to stay overnight, since for most people it is where they fly to from the Netherlands.
So for Aqaba and Amman, we list below the best options in each price range. Click on the blue link for more information about the hotel.
Budget hotel: Arab Tower Hotel
Mid-range hotel: Naylover Hotel Suites
Luxury hotel: City Rose Hotel Suites
Budget hotel: Casablanca Hotel & Suites Aqaba
Mid-range hotel: Turquoise Hotel
Luxury hotel: DoubleTree Hilton Aqaba. We ourselves stayed at the latter hotel and found it to be a fine hotel. Nice big pool there and a private beach.