What is the Jordan Trail?
The Jordan Trail is a national hiking trail. It crosses the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan from Um Qais in the north to Aqaba and the Red Sea in the south. Offering 40 days of trekking and more than 600 kilometers of trail, it connects diverse landscapes and stunning views with the country’s rich historical and cultural heritage.
Along the trail, you will witness the rolling hills of the north, the rugged wadis and cliffs overlooking the Jordan Rift Valley, the salty waters of the Dead Sea, the rose-red rock structures of Petra, the dramatic sands and towering mountains in Wadi Rum, and the colorful corals of the Red Sea. It is also a journey through the layers of Jordanian history, and an encounter with the country’s people and their cultures, traditions, and cuisine.
Best Sections of the Jordan Trail
Below are some of our favorite sections of the Jordan Trail. If you would like one or several sections with us, you can either click on one of the buttons or have a general look at our Trek & Walk Tours.
Section 6: Dana to Petra
The crown jewel of the Jordan Trail is the famous Dana to Petra Trek. There are various options in how to do this part – e.g. in 4-, 5-, or 6-days, or with transfers mid-route to bypass steep ascent or descents. The trek passes a rich variety of Jordan’s most beautiful landscapes, stunning views, and important historical and cultural sites.
The Dana to Petra Trek was recently named one of the best 15 multi-day hikes in the world by National Geographic, and we’d love to show you why! Depending on your fitness level, time availability, and accommodation requirements, we can put together a custom package that suits your needs, or reserve you a spot on one of our “Small Group Adventures” on the Trek that we offer nearly every month – we are looking forward to hearing from you!
Section 7: Petra to Wadi Rum
In the south, for desert lovers, there is the longer Petra to Aqaba route, passing through the martian landscape of Wadi Rum. After departing the main tourist trail in Petra, this trek passes through a very remote and rugged desert landscape. Enjoy trekking off the beaten path in the higher-elevation desert between the two UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Petra and Wadi Rum.
Upon reaching Wadi Rum, there are lots of options for extensions including scrambling or climbing, camel tours, horse riding tours, and the opportunity to live with the bedouin, experiencing their local way of life. Wadi Rum is awesome and well-visited. So it’s best to stay in one of the many touristic Bedouin camps available in the nature reserve. Within Wadi Rum, it’s not critical to walk the “exact” Jordan Trail route. The important thing is to soak in the beautiful environment of filled with soft-red sand and sandstone mountains.
Whatever your fitness level, time availability, budget, and comfort preference, we can customize a tour for you.
Section 1: Um Qais to Ajloun
This section of the Jordan Trail offers unique chances to explore Jordan’s green north. It passes through light forests, fields, vineyards, age-old olive groves, dams, and cave springs. Hikers also don’t miss out on the Ayoun region’s rich cultural and historical heritage – from the Roman ruins in Umm Qays to the Crusader Castle in Ajloun, there are many sites to discover.
The north of Jordan is most beautiful in the springtime around February, March, and early April. Directly after the rains that occur almost exclusively in winter, northern Jordan becomes strikingly green. Like the photo for this section, grass grows to cover most open surfaces like hilltops, fields, and empty lots in green. However, that springtime bliss is fleeting. As the temperature warms, the country’s land begins to dry out and brown. This dynamic creates a stunning contrast in the outdoor environment between spring and the rest of the year.
During the spring, locals and expats like to hike and picnic in northern Jordan on the weekend. If you are hiking in northern Jordan during the spring on a weekend you are likely to see many Jordanian families grilling and having barbeque picnics. It’s almost an informal national pastime when the weather gets nice to stuff as many family members in a vehicle and arrange the weekend barbeque under a tree, not too far from a road.
It is part of our company’s philosophy to support the growth of local community-based tourism service providers across the country. In the Ayoun region, we worked closely with local hikers to help them develop as guides for our groups, and establish family homestays. We have run workshops for their owners to educate them on the standards expected by tourists wanting to stay in their homes, and regularly send individuals and groups to these families for overnight accommodation.
We have also supported local providers to develop new products that they can use, such as developing a story-telling visit. We worked with one of the local families to help them develop a range of local stories they could share with incoming groups, shared over a meal, to educate and inform groups about local life. We tested this with a local international school from the capital, bringing Jordanian and international students to hear the stories.
In time, we hope that experienced local providers will be able to reliably support hikers along the entire route of the Jordan Trail with a range of services. We additionally hope that the growth of the parallel Jordan Bike Trail will help provide a critical mass of hikers and cyclists along the trail zones to support sustainable local businesses supporting trail goers. We look forward to more opportunities to support locals in this goal.
Hike the Jordan Trail with us!
Currently, many sections of the Jordan Trail are still difficult to hike independently. This is mostly due to various logistical challenges, such as transportation, accommodation, water, and food. But, don’t worry. In recent years several tour companies in Jordan have developed a wide range of hiking tours throughout the country.
One of these tour companies is Experience Jordan Adventures. Our experienced team has spent years hiking Jordan from north to south to be ready to help you plan your walk along the trail.
Find out more about how the Jordan Trail came to be in Our Projects.
For more info check out the Jordan Trail Website.
If you are interested in cycling the length of Jordan instead, check out the Jordan Bike Trail.