Jordan’s historical heritage, stunning natural landscapes and welcoming locals have placed the country on many travel “to do” lists. Embrace this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to explore Jordan’s thriving capital and ancient cities by adding an optional pre-cruise land package to your 11-night Secrets of Egypt & the Nile itinerary.
A Thriving Capital
Jordan’s capital city of Amman is often perceived to have two sides with contrasting personalities: a more traditional, grittier, historic old city situated in the East; and modern villas, malls, and glass towers in the West. As part of your land package, you will stay for two nights in Amman, during which you will explore the hilly capital on your included tour of the city.
The Citadel, also called Jabal al Qal’a, is not-to-be-missed. Located in the heart of the city, the cultural site boasts a Roman temple, a Byzantine church, an Umayyad palace and a stunning panoramic view of the city. The King Abdullah Mosque, with its striking blue dome, is the only mosque in Amman that openly welcomes non-Muslim visitors. Visit the Roman Theater, which seats 6,000 spectators and dates back to the second century, when Amman was under Roman rule. At the time, Amman was known under a familiar name: Philadelphia, meaning the city of “Brotherly Love.”
Walking Down Rainbow Street
While Amman’s Rainbow Street may be known for its high concentration of tourists, it is well worth a visit. Situated in one of Amman’s oldest neighborhoods with untouched architecture, old family residences, artisan stores, small cafés and overflowing flowers and greenery, Rainbow Street is beloved by tourists, expats and locals alike. If you happen to be in Amman on a weekend (which lands on a Friday and Saturday in Jordan) there are open-air markets that you can visit in the area, featuring crafts, antiques, art and food from the area.
Roman Restoration in Jerash
The ancient city of Jerash is internationally renowned for its preservation and restoration of prominent Roman structures. During your included excursion there, you’ll visit the remains of the Hippodrome, a former sporting arena that now hosts chariot races. The nearby Forum boasts 56 Ionic pillars, which seem to double in number due to their shadows. With temples, plazas and fountains, Jerash has gracefully modernized itself with bustling markets, charming restaurants and cafés, where you can grab a bite to eat alongside the ancient city walls. Taste delicious falafel with tangy hummus or ful medames (a fava bean dip). Careful, it is a cultural faux pas to dip your falafel into anything but the hummus!
A Rose-Colored City
Your stay in Jordan also includes a fascinating tour of Petra, the country’s most-visited attraction and most-valued treasure. This city of rose-colored stone and ancient history was carved into the rock face of Mount Hor by the Nabataeans as early as the fifth century BC. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is accessed via the Siq, a winding rocky gorge flanked by cliffs that tower over 260 feet. The dramatic entrance into the prehistoric city leads to the Treasury, a rock-cut temple, recognizable from its appearance in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
Eight hundred twenty-two steps lead up to the intricately carved Deir Monastery, boasting spectacular views of the surrounding valleys. In the surrounding area, find hundreds of buildings, tombs, temples, gateways – and even a 3,000-seat Roman-style theater. This fascinating blend of traditional Nabataean rock-cutting and Hellenistic architecture is truly like no other.
Why Reserve Our Optional Land Package in Jordan
Add another country to your Egypt river cruise experience: Jordan! Reserve extra time in this vibrant destination and discover ancient and modern history while exploring and marveling at the fascinating jewels of Jordan.
What’s Included in Your Optional Land Package
- 2 nights in Amman at the world-renowned St Regis Amman (or similar)
- 2 nights in Petra at the Old Village Hotel and Resort (or similar)
- Daily breakfast at the hotel
- Convenient transfers between your hotel and ship
- Guided tours in Amman, Jerash, Petra and beyond
- The services of one of our wonderful Cruise Managers – unique in the industry
Contact your preferred travel advisor to reserve our optional land package in Jordan before embarking on your ship in Cairo, Egypt as part of your Secrets of Egypt & the Nile itinerary today!