With its wealth of other attractions, Jordan’s splendid Red Sea resort is often overlooked by modern-day visitors. But apart from being a delightful place for discerning holidaymakers, this is actually a great base from which to explore various places of interest in southern Jordan.
Aqaba is a fun place. It is a microcosm of all the good things Jordan has to offer, including a fascinating history with some outstanding sites, excellent hotels and activities, superb visitor facilities, good shopping, and welcoming, friendly people, who enjoy nothing more than making sure their visitors have a good time.
Aqaba is a great place to stay if you are planning to visit Wadi Rum. Day trips can easily be organized and, because the distance is short, you will have more time to spend at the site.
But perhaps Aqaba’s greatest asset is the Red Sea itself. Here you can experience some of the best snorkelling and diving in the world. The temperate climate and gentle water currents have created a perfect environment for the growth of corals and a teeming plethora of marine life. Here you can swim with friendly sea turtles and dolphins as they dart amongst the schools of multi-coloured fish. Night dives reveal the nocturnal sea creatures, crabs, lobsters and shrimp, as they search for a midnight snack.
There are several dive centres in Aqaba. All offer well-maintained diving equipment, professional instructors, and transport by boat to a variety of dive sites.
For those who prefer to keep their feet dry, all the deep sea wonders can be viewed through a glass-bottomed boat or by submarine, or you can just relax under the sun on the resort’s sandy beaches. Plus, of course, there are plenty of other water-sport activities available, as well as an extensive and interesting Marine Park.
From as far back as five and a half thousand years ago Aqaba has played an important role in the economy of the region. It was a prime junction for land and sea routes from Asia, Africa and Europe, a role it still plays today. Because of this vital function, there are many historic sites to be explored within the area, including what is believed to be the oldest purpose-built church in the world.
Aqaba castle, located in Aqaba, Jordan. The castle was originally built by the Mamluk sultan Qansweh Al Ghuri in the 14th century.
Aqaba Museum, located in the old city of Aqaba, it lies adjacent to the historic fort of Aqaba. The museum houses Bronze Age artifacts that were discovered in the Tall Hujayrat al-Ghuzlan archaeological site near Aqaba, dating back to 4000 BC.
Aqaba International Airport is situated just 20 minutes from the town centre and services regular flights from Amman as well as from several European cities. From the town centre, the borders of Israel, Egypt’s Sinai and Saudi Arabia are no more than a 30-minute drive.
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The beauty of this country goes far beyond the sweeping desert views that inspired the iconic film sets of Indiana Jones and Lawrence of Arabia. It’s rooted in the long tradition of Jordanian hospitality, inviting visitors to explore a slice of the Middle East with open arms.