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A first-timer’s guide to Petra, Jordan

First-timers guide to Petra in Jordan

Petra is always appearing on those top travel lists – the top ten places to see in your lifetime, the new seven wonders of the world. But unlike some places that top those lists, Jordan is actually fairly easy and not too expensive to visit. There’s accommodation ranging from tented camps to five-star resorts, there’s good public transport or it’s simple to drive yourself, it’s safe and the people are incredibly friendly (the first English phrase everyone seems to learn is ‘Welcome to Jordan’). So if you want to visit Petra, which is the best way? While there are plenty of companies which offer organised trips to the site, it’s also an easy place to visit independently. Here are some tips I picked up on my first visit to Petra – from the closest hotels to stay at, the best times to visit, and even the best places to stop for a drink after a long day of exploring.

The Royal Tombs in Petra, Jordan

Petra’s Royal Tombs, carved into the hillside

Where should I stay?

A whole town – Wadi Musa – has grown up around Petra to serve visitors to the site. There are hotels of all types and budgets here, starting right next to visitor’s centre and stretching up into the hills. Closest to the entrance are the Petra Guest House and Crowne Plaza hotels, right next door to the visitor’s centre, and the Mövenpick across the street. Though if you have a car then the hotels further away up on the hillside, like the Rocky Mountain Hotel where we stayed, are good value and have stunning valley views.

How do I get to Petra?

If you’re staying in Wadi Musa, then Petra’s either a short walk away or the hotels further out often run a free shuttle down to the visitor’s centre a couple of times a day, though it does mean you’re limited to fixed times. Otherwise there are plenty of taxis waiting outside the visitor’s centre, especially in the afternoons, and you’ll pay about JD3–5 within Wadi Musa. If you are driving to Petra, then there’s a free car park opposite the bus stop just in front of the Petra Moon hotel. This bus stop is also where you can catch the JETT buses to Amman and Aqaba if you’re travelling on by public transport.

Petra in black and white, Jordan

The Roman ruins at Petra

What do tickets cost?

Petra is one of those places where the longer you stay the better value it is. A one-day ticket costs JD50 (about £48) per person, but a two-day ticket is only JD55 and a three-day ticket JD60. These are the prices that apply if you are staying in Jordan; if you’re on a day trip and not staying overnight then the price is JD90 (though you aren’t usually asked to prove you’re staying if you’re not travelling on a group tour). Children under 15 get free entry. You can buy tickets at the new visitor’s centre, but they don’t accept credit cards so you need to pay in cash. You can also pick up maps, guide books and hire a tour guide.

When should I go?

The best time to visit is in spring and autumn as the temperatures aren’t so high and the crowds are smaller. The ticket office is open from 6am to 6pm in the summer and 6am to 4pm in the winter, and Petra closes around sunset. The quietest times are usually early morning and late afternoons. Petra is also open at night on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for the Petra by night tour. Tickets cost JD17 (£16) and the tour starts at 8.30pm and finishes about 10.30pm. It’s really popular so I’d recommend hanging back so you can walk down slowly and experience the Siq away from the scrum of visitors.

View from the Royal Tombs across Petra, Jordan

Overlooking Petra from the Urn Tomb

What should I wear?

You’ll be walking over sandy and rocky ground so walking shoes are probably the best bet, or sturdy sandals if you don’t mind picking the occasional stone out. There’s hardly any shade around the site, so a hat or scarf is a good idea too, and don’t forget to bring plenty of sunscreen. You see people wandering around Petra in all sorts of clothes – from full-on hiking gear to vest tops and shorts, and I even saw one women in an evening dress and heels – but I felt happier covered up with a long-sleeved cotton top and trousers (though it helped that it wasn’t too hot in November).

How much walking will I have to do?

Petra stretches over a massive 60 square kilometre area and you’ll end up doing a lot of walking. But if it gets too much there’s a choice of camels, donkeys and horses to do the hard work for you. A horse ride from the visitor’s centre to the entrance of the Siq is included in the ticket price, though you’ll still need to pay a tip of about JD5. It’s an easy 15-minute walk downhill though so you might want to save the horse ride til the way back up as that final slog up a sandy path after a whole day’s walking is a bit of a killer. There are donkey and camel handlers all around the site if you want a lift at any other time. The donkeys up to the Monastery and for the hour’s walk from the old city to the Siq at the end of the day are busiest, but there are plenty of them around so you should be able to negotiate on the price. There’ve been reports of some handlers mistreating their animals so do be aware of this and check that they look healthy and cared for.

Camels in Petra, Jordan

Camels in Petra

Can I get food and drink inside Petra?

Most of the hotels in Petra will do you a packed lunch if you ask the night before, and there is a line of stalls outside the entrance where you can pick up drinks and snacks like chocolate and crisps on the way in. Prices in the site tend to be a bit higher so it’s worth stocking up on water. There is a mixture of places to eat and drink inside Petra, ranging from Bedouin tea stalls, simple kiosks to cafés and there’s even a full restaurant near the museum called The Basin where you can have a buffet lunch and a bottle of wine (though you might need a camel to carry you back!).

What else should I know?

Petra’s surprisingly well-equipped with toilets, with proper toilet blocks at the visitor’s centre, near the Theatre and by the museum. There are also portaloos by the start of the Siq and at a couple of cafes.

There are stalls selling souvenirs all over Petra (with some pushy sellers) but one worth a stop is a jewellery stall by the museum run by New Zealander Marguerite van Geldermalsen. She came to Jordan as a backpacker back in the 1970s and ended up staying and marrying a Bedouin who lived in a cave in Petra. She’s written a book about her experiences called Married To A Bedouin, which you can buy there.

And finally, if you’re in need of a drink after a long day of walking, some of the nicest places to stop at on the way out are the Movenpick Hotel’s Arabian-style bar or the Cave Bar by the Petra Guest House – a 2000-year-old Nabataean tomb which has been turned into a bar.

Guide to Petra, Jordan – map of the site

Have you been to Petra? Do you have any other tips for visiting the site?

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A first-timer's guide to visiting Petra, Jordan

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106 Comments

  • Reply
    Andrew Petcher
    January 21, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    A lot of good advice that I will remember!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      January 22, 2013 at 1:06 am

      Thanks Andrew, hope it comes in useful for you someday.

      • Reply
        Aini Putri
        February 9, 2015 at 1:22 pm

        HI, Im in Jordan now and planning to visit Petra from Zarqa. By the way, do you know how much it costs for Jordanian for staying a night? Because I’ll go there with my Jordanian friend and she thinks it’ll be epensive.

  • Reply
    faranginasia
    January 22, 2013 at 12:12 am

    Great advice! I can not wait to visit there one day – you blog is fantastic!
    Thanks!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      January 22, 2013 at 1:05 am

      Thanks for visiting, and good luck with your new site and travels around Asia!

  • Reply
    The Travelbunny
    January 22, 2013 at 12:13 am

    Excellent advice – if I’m ever fortunate enough to get to Petra I’ll print this off and take it with me 🙂

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      January 22, 2013 at 1:09 am

      Thanks Suzanne, I absorbed so many articles and so much info I thought I’d put it to use!

  • Reply
    Madhu
    January 24, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    Good and comprehensive tips Lucy. Love the map 🙂

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      January 25, 2013 at 1:43 pm

      Thanks Madhu, I ended up carrying a few different maps as none of them had everything on, so I thought I’d try and draw my own version!

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Jeff | Planet Bell
    January 30, 2013 at 12:46 am

    Now is a great time to visit as tourism is down due to the drama in the neighboring countries.

    Petra is my favorite of the ancient wonders, in part because there are some great hikes among the ruins that allow you to escape the crowds.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      January 30, 2013 at 3:02 pm

      Very true, I think a lot of people have been put off visiting but Jordan seemed perfectly safe to me and it would be a shame for people to miss out on seeing Petra.

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    giselleandcody
    February 6, 2013 at 8:07 am

    Great advice. We went with a tour group that left from Dahab, Egypt.
    After about 10 minutes with the group we decided to leave and explore on our own.
    So glad we did. The group didn’t even make it to the monastery.
    Petra is such a beautiful place and everyone should go in their lifetime.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      February 6, 2013 at 6:08 pm

      Definitely – it’s so much better to be able to escape and go and explore on your own.

  • Reply
    TrvlGal83
    April 27, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    If you can, try to do the climb above the Royal Tombs to get the view of the Treasury from above. The climb was pretty tough but I made it to the first plateau in about 30mins (where the small hut is) there may be a Bedouin guy named Fawaz, he ivited me for tea which I did on my way back. To the left of his cave/hut is a path down to a hidden valley and you get a great view of the Al-Khazneh. My favourite part so far. I was a solo female and felt fine being there, passed about 3 Bedouin on my way all offered me horse/mule ride but were not pushy, offered me help “on the way bacK” if I needed… definitely do it if you can!!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      April 29, 2013 at 1:01 pm

      That was one of the walks we would’ve liked to have done but ran out of time, I’ve seen some great photos from there though. Thanks for the tips!

  • Reply
    Anita Mac
    June 6, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    Great tips Lucy! Jordan is so high on my bucket list – I hope to be putting your tips to great use!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      June 7, 2013 at 10:38 am

      Hope you get to make it out there soon, sure you’ll love it!

  • Reply
    Viaggiando con Bea
    June 19, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    Lucy your post is really fantastic and Petra is one of the place I should visit.
    Thank you for all your suggestions, sorry for my English.
    Bea

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      June 21, 2013 at 10:43 am

      Thanks Bea, Petra is such a dream destination isn’t it?

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Janice Heck
    December 2, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    I spent only a day at Petra but just loved it. It was a very slow day, not long after the missile strikes in Israel last year, so many travelers had canceled their plans (including two of our small group). We had the place just about to ourselves. It was cold, so we enjoyed hot peppermint tea in the Bedouin cave that’s on the main track. My friend bought some of the metal and bead jewelry from a Bedouin kid. (Good salesperson…he found the big spender in our group!) You must visit the restroom (modern) on the main track. It is built into a cave and had the most gorgeous natural stone ceiling with waves of colored veins in the rock.
    Because the crowds were small, the cart drivers were anxious for riders. We were glad to accommodate, and it was a blast. They raced through the Siq, sometimes playing daredevil with other drivers. It’s a hold-your-nose experience, but well worth the fun. We laughed the whole way down to the Treasury. I’d love to go to Jordan again and spend more time…especially at Petra and Jerash…and a few other places, too. I wrote about Petra on my blog.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      December 23, 2013 at 7:03 pm

      Petra is such a fascinating place, I’m so glad I made the trip out there. We were there a little later than you I think and it was still fairly quiet but I hear it can get very overrun in peak season. Nice to be able to soak it all up without being too packed and rushed!

  • Reply
    therubyred
    December 23, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    This is brilliant information! Thank you! I am planning on visiting next month!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      December 23, 2013 at 7:03 pm

      Thanks – hope you have a fantastic trip and hope it comes in useful!

      • Reply
        therubyred
        December 29, 2013 at 9:36 am

        Thank you! Look forward to reliving ancient History!

  • Reply
    Katie
    January 31, 2014 at 3:19 am

    Hi Lucy, Love your blog and your passion for travel & adventure! My husband and I just came across your article on Petra (we are planning a 2 day trip to the site) and we were SO IMPRESSED by all of your notes & travel tips. Many thanks for sharing and I hope that you have a very exciting trip planned for 2014.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      February 3, 2014 at 6:39 pm

      Hi Katie, so glad to hear that the article was useful to you! Hope you have a fantastic trip to Petra, it’s a really amazing place.

  • Reply
    cory
    February 10, 2014 at 8:00 am

    Lucy – is end of February a bad time to go (weather wise)? Thank you!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      February 10, 2014 at 12:09 pm

      Hi Cory, we were there in mid-November which should have similar conditions to late February – generally it was sunny and dry when we were there, warm in the sun (18-20 degrees) but cool in the shade and can get cold at night. We had one cloudy day with some spot of rain but it’s generally quite dry.

  • Reply
    Tina
    February 18, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    Thanks for that! You’ve summarized all the information I’ve read in one succinct article! Just wondering if you were to do one day from noon till 6pm then another day 6am-6pm (stopping for lunch) would we see everything (or the biggest and best at least). Just trying to work out if we should do the third day 🙂 thanks heaps

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      February 18, 2014 at 4:53 pm

      So glad that it has come in useful! We did two days and managed to see most of the things we wanted too, so I would imagine that especially with your long second day then two days should be enough for you too. Have a great trip!

  • Reply
    Michelle McAlister
    March 7, 2014 at 9:04 pm

    When I was in Petra I saw two cases of animal cruelty there with the donkeys. One was chained by an extremely short chain to a fence and whipped and yelled at for no reason as he stood there. He was just standing there chained up (meaning, not trying to be moved). The other was left in the sun with a tight plastic muzzle over his mouth for 9 hours! I was there. He couldn’t move and was there in the sun with no water or shade for 9 hours. It really altered my opinion of Petra.

    Fellow tourists, please report mistreatment of donkeys to the Petra Archaelogical Park and Heritage Society. They want to hear from tourists visiting Petra about any signs of crutely toward the donkeys working there (neglect, excessive whipping, hitting, punching, leaving in the sun for long periods).

    Email them at: info@pra.gov.jo or at http://www.pdtra.gov.jo

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      April 17, 2014 at 10:32 pm

      That sounds terrible – we didn’t see anything that bad but there were a few boys whipping their donkeys. Thanks for the tip about contacting the Petra Archaelogical Park and Heritage Society, very useful for people to know.

  • Reply
    Mary
    April 17, 2014 at 4:26 am

    Hi Lucy,

    Thanks for this post! I’m from D.C. but I will be in Italy in June and I would really love to go visit Petra. I have to work during weekdays but I’m free on the weekends. Do you have any advice/travel tips for me so I can go see Petra? Thank you in advance.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      April 17, 2014 at 10:39 pm

      Hi Mary, Petra should be just doable in a weekend if you don’t mind a lot of travel – you can even do a day tour from Amman, though I would recommend staying overnight if you can to see a bit more. So you could arrive in Amman Friday night, travel to Petra on Saturday morning (about 3-4 hours) and spend the afternoon there, then have Sunday morning at Petra before heading to Amman for your flight back. Hope that helps!

  • Reply
    amychesser
    April 21, 2014 at 5:42 am

    Good read! I loved Petra, one of the fun parts of the day for me was the bedouins in particular the ones who tried to get me to ride one of the donkeys up to the monastery. They had funny sales lines like “it’s a desert ferrari” and “donkey comes with airconditioning”.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      April 21, 2014 at 1:09 pm

      Thanks – yes they definitely have a great banter going on!

  • Reply
    Tim
    April 24, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    You are getting around Lucy. I have not yet been to Petra but my brother has and raved about it. Your way of writing is very easy to read and imagine being there which is a talent and I look forward to you next post. All the best, Btw, are you writing a basic piece on it’s history? Tim

  • Reply
    Aggy (@dewtraveller)
    April 25, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    Great advice Lucy! Will definitely bookmark this for when I finally get the chance to go there!

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      April 27, 2014 at 12:50 pm

      Thanks Aggy, it’s a fascinating place, hope you do get to visit sometime!

  • Reply
    Cathy Sweeney
    April 27, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Very helpful. I don’t have any set plans yet, but do hope to visit Petra sometime, so a first-timers guide is perfect for me. The book by Marguerite van Geldermalsen might be very interesting – I’ll have to check into that. Thanks for the tip about her and her shop.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      April 28, 2014 at 11:25 am

      You’re welcome Cathy, Marguerite van Geldermalsen’s book is really interesting, gives a very different perspective on Petra and Jordan.

  • Reply
    Wes
    May 3, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    First off, FAB blog. love it. I’m a travel junkie just like you! Im going in june (its ok I absolutely LOVE the heat) and I’m just curious about how much time you feel is enough? I’m planning on 2.5 days in petra (first day leaving early AM a bedo camp in Wadi Rum) and as well as petra by night one of the nights. with leaving early AM from wadi rum which is around 1.5 hours or so id get there as soon as i can and then that leaves me two full days at petra before I’m off to a resort on the dead sea. Because you have been there, done that, i was wondering if you think that the 2.5ish days I’ve allocated to Petra would be sufficient. Im a huge travel junkie (36 countries and counting) and I rarely can convince myself to visit a place twice (with few exceptions) and I just want to get your opinion on if you think id be able to cover all the ground I need to! Also, you mentioned you stayed at the rocket mountain hostel/hotel….its currently my top choice, would you recommend it?

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      May 7, 2014 at 10:14 am

      Hi, yes I’d say 2.5 days in Petra should be enough – I did two days and managed to see all the main sites, and with a bit of extra time you could add in some of the hikes too. If you get there early it shouldn’t be too hot and you can miss some of the worst of the crowds. The Rocky Mountain Hostel was great – very good value, rooms were simple but have everything you need and the roof terrace and balcony were fabulous, we had a great meal there too. Hope you have a fantastic trip!

  • Reply
    ali zaman
    May 7, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    I love your blog thank you.

  • Reply
    Heather
    May 10, 2014 at 4:01 am

    Hi, I too enjoyed Petra so much,that I am going back next May. I noticed our entry ticket was a day and night ticket. Can you stay in there overnight or just visit at night?

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      May 13, 2014 at 9:21 pm

      I don’t believe you can stay overnight and the night-time tour was a separate trip with an extra cost when I was there, so that’s quite strange – maybe it means day/evening?

  • Reply
    Paulo Santos
    June 6, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    Hi. Great blog and great tips for Petra. I am thinking to visit Petra in the beginning of July. I know that is too hot, right? And do you think that one day is too much to visit Amman? I am thinking to do a 3 day trip. Arrive on thursday visit Amman and maybe in the same day travel to Petra. So i would have friday and saturday morning to visit Petra. Do you think that is enough?

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      June 11, 2014 at 4:32 pm

      Hi, yes it’ll definitely be hot then! It’s probably be a good idea to get up early and look around the site when it opens, then avoid the hottest part of the day and come back later on. One and a half days should be enough to see the main sites of Petra. Hope you have a great time!

  • Reply
    Abu baker Jadwla
    June 11, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    Great Blog I love it ,I will be there in the next week thank you for your precious advices 🙂

  • Reply
    Ismail N
    June 17, 2014 at 9:26 am

    Thank you for sharing the map, it really helps me a lot in understanding the sites. Petra is in my bucket list.

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      June 22, 2014 at 1:09 pm

      You’re welcome! I found it a bit hard to get my head around what was where before I went so hope it helps.

  • Reply
    Rinki
    July 26, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    Hi Lucy, Your blog on Petra is of immense help. I am trying to put together a trip to Petra. I have few questions? Did you book a private vehicle from Amman and drove all the way to Petra or took local vehicle from the hotel to move between Petra, Wadi rum and Amman? The site guides should we take from travel agent or get one from the tourist center?

    Could you share which travel agent you used in Jordan?

    • Reply
      Lucy Dodsworth
      July 28, 2014 at 10:42 am

      Hi Rinki, I didn’t use a travel agent at all but booked everything myself. We hired a car from the airport in Amman and drove all the way to Petra (the roads were good and it took about 6 hours via the scenic Kings Highway but it about 4 hours on the more direct Desert Highway). We booked our car in advance through Sixt but there are lots of car hire companies there. If you want to hire a guide in any of the sites there are guides at the tourist centre, or you can pre book a tour with a company like Viatour. Hope you have a great trip!

      • Reply
        Rinki
        July 28, 2014 at 12:19 pm

        Thanks Lucy

  • Reply
    Michael Sanders
    October 14, 2014 at 6:13 am

    Great information on Petra, thank you so much. Love the map!

  • Reply
    Anne
    November 5, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Thanks for your posts on Petra! I used them to help me book my trip for next week! =)

    • Reply
      Lucy
      November 5, 2014 at 4:26 pm

      That’s great – hope you have a fantastic trip!

  • Reply
    Millen
    November 14, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    Was in Petra in November 2014. I also saw very bad cases of animal abuse (donkeys being electrocuted with tazers, exhausted horses having to race up and down the site, very young children beating animals) Despite the beauty of the site I felt sicknened by the cruelty and the greed of the locals. Petra should be seen but I will avoid any animal ride.

    • Reply
      Lucy
      November 17, 2014 at 2:03 pm

      Thanks for the update, things didn’t seem so bad (at least visibly) when I was there but it sounds like they have got worse and that people would be best avoiding the animal rides. I’m updating this article soon so will add a note to warn people.

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  • Reply
    Kumar
    January 9, 2015 at 1:49 am

    Hi Lucy,
    I am thinking of visiting Petra in February. Will it be a good time?

    • Reply
      Lucy
      January 9, 2015 at 12:35 pm

      Hi Kumar, I visited in November which should have similar temperatures to February – generally it was sunny and dry when we were there, warm in the sun (18-20 degrees) but cool in the shade and cold at night. We had one cloudy day with some spots of rain but it’s quite a dry region.

  • Reply
    anjungnusantarai
    February 12, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    Dear Lucy,

    I will be attending an event at Beit Zaman Hotel in Petra but I got confused as google map is showing the hotel in two opposite location – one close to the treasury and the other one near the al-Anbat Hotel. Do you know which one is the correct location for it?

    However, as Beit Zaman is expensive and I just need a backpacker-level lodging, can you advice if staying at a hotel like the Cleopatra would allow me an easy walk to the Beit Zaman, and equally to the Old Petra, or not?

    Thanks for any advice.

  • Reply
    Sarah
    March 27, 2015 at 9:44 am

    Thanks for the info.. I actually had no idea it was so easy to get to & there were so many facilities in the area. Yes this is definitely at the top of my bucket list and yes I will get there one day… your information will definitely come in handy when I do 🙂

    • Reply
      Lucy
      March 27, 2015 at 11:50 am

      Thanks Sarah, yes I was surprised how developed the area is – but I guess it’s one of the world’s most spectacular sights! Hope you get to make the trip out there someday.

  • Reply
    Marion
    April 7, 2015 at 1:18 pm

    Hi Lucy, we have booked to go to Petra in August 2015 which will be very hot! If we buy a two day ticket can we go to the site early each day and later on each day? Do we need a guide or is it obvious where to go? We aren’t into anything too adventurous , would just like to see the main sites. When you get to the end of the main trail, we presume you have to walk all the way back – no taxis to take you back?!!!!

    • Reply
      Lucy
      April 8, 2015 at 9:54 am

      Hi Marion, yes if you have the two-day ticket you can come and go as much as you like. In August it’s definitely a good idea to go early in the morning then avoid the worst of the heat and go back again in the afternoon. There are lots of guides available but I didn’t use one – if you have a good guidebook it’s easy to see the main sites. There are no vehicles within the site but if you get to the end and can’t face the walk back there are plenty of donkeys and camels available! Hope you have a great trip.

  • Reply
    ambitiouswanderer
    April 8, 2015 at 9:24 am

    As you said, this is so on my list of places to visit! Your guide advice will be thankfully used!

    • Reply
      Lucy
      April 8, 2015 at 9:52 am

      That’s great – hope you get to make the trip sometime soon!

  • Reply
    Nikki
    October 1, 2015 at 3:29 pm

    Looks amazing! I’d really love to go one day 🙂

    • Reply
      Lucy
      October 3, 2015 at 4:55 pm

      It’s a really magical place!

  • Reply
    localtripsnetala
    October 10, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    Hi,
    Great Article , if you want to Go to Petra from Amman you either hire a driver and a car , or go from Abdali station at 6:30 Am all year round, also there is a local bus from the south station it goes when it is full only from Morning till after noon ,

    Have a safe Trip

  • Reply
    MFairleigh
    October 18, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    Could approximate distances be added to the map? I have difficulty walking so need to know what I’m getting into. Thanks. Love all this infol.

  • Reply
    traveller from Russia
    November 11, 2015 at 8:40 pm

    Thanks for the article. It was more informative and clear than info from the oficial Petra website )))

    • Reply
      Lucy
      November 12, 2015 at 2:49 pm

      Thanks so much – hope it comes in useful and enjoy Petra!

  • Reply
    Right Travel
    January 11, 2016 at 9:56 am

    I love this article. Really you described it very well. Thanks for the post..!

    • Reply
      Lucy
      January 11, 2016 at 3:00 pm

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    Savita
    January 27, 2016 at 9:00 pm

    Thanks for a great article Lucy. I’m just planning my visit now for May. Could you tell me how long it would take to visit the Monastery on day 2 from the Visitor’s Centre at the entrance? Day 1 will be visiting everything up to the museum. Could we ride donkeys as far as the museum on day 2 and then walk up to the Monastery or would you recommend another alternative? Any help you can provide would be so great!

    Thank you!
    Savita

  • Reply
    Kemal Kaya
    May 20, 2016 at 8:31 am

    Petra is there for ever. I went there last year from Aqaba to Petra by a private car and a driver it is only 3 hours in a very nice scenic road trough the kings high way. Petra is a must see place.

    • Reply
      Lucy
      May 22, 2016 at 3:13 pm

      Petra is a fantastic place to visit – really enjoyed travelling the King’s Highway too.

    • Reply
      Janice Swan
      September 6, 2016 at 1:08 am

      Would you be able to give me your contact for the private car and driver. Will be visiting Petra in Oct.

  • Reply
    Bette
    May 28, 2016 at 12:29 am

    We arrive just after midnight at amm after flight from Ca what does one recommend go direct to Petra or….. Transport choice at that hour?
    Also anyone know how we get from Petra to go to Eilat via borders transport options $$?

    • Reply
      Lucy
      May 29, 2016 at 11:39 am

      Hi, if you are arriving late you could hire a driver to get you down to Petra (about 2.5 hours by the direct highway). Otherwise if you stay overnight in Amman you can use the buses or a driver and travel via the King’s Highway which is really scenic. It will depend on how much time you have to spend. Onwards to Eilat you can get a taxi from Petra to the border – there’s some useful info on this site (though it’s mainly about the reverse journey) http://www.touristisrael.com/get-eilat-petra/15380/

      • Reply
        Janice Swan
        September 6, 2016 at 1:11 am

        I love your blog. Its very useful! WOuld you be able to recommend a driver. We are looking for one for my 5 days visits to Petra in October. Flying in from New York to Amman.

  • Reply
    Gokhan Degirmenci
    July 20, 2016 at 6:39 am

    These are good tips! I didn’t rent a car while I was in Jordan but will keep these in mind since I definitely want to return there with my daughter.

  • Reply
    Gale
    August 25, 2016 at 5:37 pm

    This is super useful. Thanks so much for sharing! Very much looking forward to our first trip to Jordan in a couple weeks 😀

  • Reply
    Sioned
    October 6, 2016 at 10:37 am

    Hi Lucy, my friend and I are visit petra this coming Monday. We only have one full day and land in Amman Sunday evening. Would you suggest hiring a car and driving straight to petra Sunday night?

    Also is it possible to fit the dead sea and sightseeing in Petra into ine day?

    Any advice would be helpful!

    Sioned

    • Reply
      Lucy
      October 6, 2016 at 1:26 pm

      Hi Sioned, if you are really pushed for time then yes it’s probably best to get a car and drive straight down to Petra, that way you can be there for when it opens and see as much as possible. The main highway is much quicker, but if you want to check out the Dead Sea then you can come back along the King’s Highway and make a quick stop if you have time. Have a great trip!

  • Reply
    Liz
    November 13, 2016 at 12:19 am

    Great advice. Staying with friends in Amman and will be visiting Petra in a few days. Thanks. Liz from Dorset in the UK

    • Reply
      Lucy
      November 13, 2016 at 6:43 am

      Hope you have a great trip!

  • Reply
    Ehsan
    December 13, 2016 at 11:54 pm

    Dear Lucy,

    This is our first time in Jordan. Ive not yet booked hotel in Amman and was thinking whether it will be better to stay in Petra hotels instead. Since i am traveling with my wife who will not be willing to walk more than one km. so i was thinking to drive from Amman and stay at one of the hotels at Petra to sea as much as possible.

    • Reply
      Lucy
      December 14, 2016 at 9:28 am

      Hi Ehsan, Petra’s covers a big area so I think it would be a good idea to stay as close as possible to the entrance to the site (also Amman is around 3 hours from Petra so if you’re coming for a day it’s going to be a very early start). There are horses and carriages to take you down to the Treasury and then camels and donkeys for the rest of the site too so it’s possible to cover quite a bit of ground even if you don’t want to walk far.

  • Reply
    Chloe Gunning
    March 7, 2017 at 9:45 am

    Great blog – I’m just planning a trip to visit in a couple of weeks! Thanks Lucy 🙂

    • Reply
      Lucy
      March 8, 2017 at 3:17 pm

      Have a fantastic time, it’s an amazing place!

  • Reply
    Minh
    July 13, 2017 at 12:25 am

    Do you recommend hiring a guide? Or am I better off buying a Lonely Planet book and just explore myself? I typically like to do off the beaten path stuff and away from group. But not sure if I would get lost in Petra if I go hiking on my own?

    Thank you

    • Reply
      Lucy
      July 14, 2017 at 2:47 pm

      Hi, if you are sticking to the main trails then you should be fine with a guidebook but if you want to go properly off the beaten track then a guide would probably be a good idea – it’s such a big area that they should be able to advise you as to the best parts to see too. Hope you have a great trip.

  • Reply
    ioananegrea
    October 1, 2017 at 10:07 pm

    The best place to exchange money in Petra?

    • Reply
      Lucy
      October 2, 2017 at 7:40 pm

      Sorry afraid I’m not sure (I changed mine in Amman) but there are a couple of ATMs in Wadi Musa.

  • Reply
    faizul
    November 23, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    hey Lucy.. i was wondering.. the one day ticket only applies from 6am to 6pm is it ??? what about nite at petra do I have to buy another ticket for that or shut I just buy a 2 days tickets and that will cover up till late nite ??

    • Reply
      Lucy
      November 24, 2017 at 9:48 am

      Hi, the Petra by Night candlelit session is a special event so you need to buy a different ticket for that – it’s 17 JD and is on every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 8.30pm

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