Visiting Amman – Jordan’s diverse capital!

Welcome to Amman – the vibrant heart of Jordan! As experienced backpackers, we set out to explore this fascinating city and want to share our adventures with you. So grab your backpacks and let’s dive into the hustle and bustle of Amman!

Amman is the largest city in Jordan with almost 4 million inhabitants and is located in the north of the country not far from the Syrian border. What fascinated me most about the capital of Jordan was the combination of history and modernity. If you stroll through the streets, you will come across ancient ruins from the Roman era, which are located in the middle of a lively, vibrant metropolis. Amman has a lot to offer and the good thing is that most of the entrance fees are already included in your Jordan Pass (if you have it). The culinary side of Amman is also particularly exciting.

Highlights of Amman

Amman is for me a city that you have to experience. Sure there are some sights that are also super exciting, but for me the most interesting thing was to watch the people in their daily hustle and bustle and discover things on their own. Be it watching the juice seller pressing his juices, the carpet sellers on the market or the people who just sit together and discuss things that I do not understand. Here I have summarized our highlights from Amman.

Amman citadel

One of the most popular sights is the Amman Citadel, which sits majestically on a hill and offers a breathtaking view of the city. Here you can explore the ruins of the Roman temple of Hercules and immerse yourself in the history of ancient civilizations.

Stroll through Amman & try culinary delights

To complete the authentic Amman experience, be sure to visit one of the lively markets, such as Al-Mukhayyat Market, Souk Jara or Souk Al-Sukkar. Here you can buy traditional spices, fresh fruits and vegetables as well as handmade souvenirs and experience the hustle and bustle of the locals.

Amphitheater of Amman

Another must-see is the Amman Roman Amphitheater, an impressive relic from Roman times that is still used for performances. You can climb the steep tiers and imagine how spectators once sat here to enjoy the performances.

Abu Darwish Mosque

The Abu Darwische Mosque is not a typical mosque purely in terms of appearance. It has a modern black and white design and is one of the most famous mosques in the country and a real eye-catcher.

Jordan Museum

For art lovers, the Jordan Museum is an absolute highlight. Here you can admire a fascinating collection of archaeological finds that present the history and culture of Jordan from prehistoric times to modern times.

Stay overnight in Amman

If I were to travel to Amman again, I would probably just look for a suitable place to stay on site. During my visit back then, I had chosen the Cliff Hostel, because it was the cheapest. The location is brilliant and it was also really okay but no more. I have now often made the experience that in Arab countries many accommodations are not even listed on the known booking platforms, and you can find much cheaper things on the spot. The reviews of the accommodations in Amman are often very manageable, so you should not put great expectations in your accommodation as a budget backpacker.

Arrival to Amman

As the capital, Amman is very easy to reach. You can get to Amman from almost anywhere. Often the buses that serve longer routes leave in the morning. The bottom line is that there are 2 types of buses: The local buses and the tourist buses. I actually rode the local buses exclusively and found it perfectly fine, you just often need longer.

If you are planning a backpacking trip to Jordan, I would recommend you either start in the north and then fly back from the south (Aqaba) or vice versa, so you can save time for a possible return trip.

Dining out in Amman

One thing in advance: Even as a vegan or vegetarian you can get by in Amman, especially in the Arabic restaurants. Culinary Amman has a lot to offer. There are many restaurants that offer classic Arabic dishes such as mezze (a selection of small appetizers like hummus, tabouleh and falafel), and kebab skewers. Burgers and (grilled) chicken are equally popular. The national dish of Jordan is called mansaf and you should not miss it either. Mansaf is lamb cooked in a kind of yogurt sauce and then served with rice. Restaurants can be found all over the city. Near the Cliff Hostel there are also some restaurants that I found very good. We were recommended the Abu Hatem Restaurant. But I can’t say if it is still recommended today. It was in any case a bit more expensive than directly on the street – but that is usually so.

The surrounding area of Amman

Another highlight is a visit to the ancient city of Jerash, also known as the “Pompeii of the East”. Here you can explore well-preserved Roman ruins, including temples, triumphal arches and the impressive Oval Forum. The city is located a bit out of town, but is easily accessible by public transportation – admission is also included in the Jordan Pass. We have written a separate post on the visit to Jerash.

Artemis Tempel Jerash

Another important historical jewel is the desert castle of Qasr Amra, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This well-preserved desert castle dates from the Umayyad period and is known for its unique frescoes depicting scenes from daily life and mythological figures. Likewise, Ajloun is a popular destination for excursions. Unfortunately, I didn’t make it to the two destinations mentioned at the time, but I heard that people liked it.

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About Us

We are Julian & Naomi and we love to travel the world and immerse ourselves in other cultures. We have an adventurous, spartan, sustainable and reflective travel style. In our opinion, the greatest adventures are experienced when you do things on your own and try to live like a local. The taste of a country is best captured on the road
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