The huge eastern deserts of Jordan are mostly stony plains of limestone or basalt, but much of the southern desert is sand, presaging the dunes and vast emptinesses of the Arabian interior. In the far south, squeezed onto Jordan’s only stretch of coastline, Aqaba forms a pleasant urban counterpoint to the breathtaking marine flora and fauna which thrive in the warm Red Sea waters just offshore. The real highlights, though, lie inland. You shouldn’t leave Jordan without spending time in the extraordinary desert moonscape of Wadi Rum, haunt of Lawrence of Arabia and starting point for camel treks into the red sands, while the award-winning ecolodge at Feynan makes a fabulous hideaway for walks, cultural encounters and off-the-beaten-track exploration in the little-visited Wadi Araba desert.

Two of the three north–south highways connecting Amman with Aqaba are desert roads, and only really of interest as access routes to and from southern Jordan. The easternmost of the three, the so-called Desert Highway, follows the line of the old Hejaz Railway and serves as a demarcation boundary between well-watered hills to the west and the open desert. The westernmost of the three is the Wadi Araba road, which hugs the line of the Israeli border south of the Dead Sea.

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Jordan features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Discovering Amman: why you should stay a while

Discovering Amman: why you should stay a while

One of the world’s top adventure spots, tourists to Jordan tend to zip right through Amman and head straight to the mountains, Petra, or the fabulous burnt-or…

16 Apr 2018 • Eleanor Ross insert_drive_file Article
Video: 5 reasons to hike the Jordan Trail

Video: 5 reasons to hike the Jordan Trail

Despite being a safe country with no shortage of breathtaking historical sites, friendly people and some of the world's most stunning wilderness, Jordan is ofte…

23 Jan 2018 • Colt St. George videocam Video
Rediscovering Jordan: why the time to go is now

Rediscovering Jordan: why the time to go is now

It’s one of the world’s top adventure destinations – and one of our top 18 places to visit in 2018 – and yet, in recent years, tourists have been es…

22 Jan 2018 • Sarah Reid insert_drive_file Article
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