Jordan. Probably not the first country you think of to visit with kids. But I’m sure you’ll think differently about that after reading this blog. Because this country has a lot of beautiful things to offer. If it’s not for the incredibly hospitable, humble and friendly people. It’s certainly for it’s incredible nature. In this blog I will share 3 cool spots that are worth your while when you visit Jordan with kids. When you want to do something different than the usual hotspots.
Jordan with kids, 3x off the beaten track
Sleeping in a tipi in Dana Nature Reserve
This park is skipped by lot of tourists. Which I don’t understand, as it is beautiful and quiet. Although the last is due to the lack of tourists of course, so perhaps don’t share this tip ;).
Dana is a protected nature reserve and for that reason you’re not let into it that easily. We drive over a deserted sand road. Following the poor signs (we drove wrong twice) to the mini office at the entrance of the park. Just when we think we may be in the wrong place the employee tells us: “You are in the wrong place, the entrance is on the other side of that mountain”. We look at each other for a moment, not sure what to do. Did we miss a sign somewhere? But then the man bursts out laughing and we know he was just joking.
After a 10 minute drive we are picked up by a truck that takes down a steep road, into the park. After some bouncing around we see our tent camp for the night in front of us. “Yeah, a tipi!” Philou cries out. What’s special about Dana is her location. Our tent camp lies atop a gorge, a sort of mini Grand Canyon if you will. We go for a nice walk over the rocks and see the sun set slowly. When we’re back in our tent camp we enjoy a nice cup of thee (not the last one of this trip).
Homestay and avoiding the crowd at Petra
World wonder Petra is one of the main reasons for travelers to visit Jordan. It’s certainly one of ours too. Where most tourists visit the famous Siq and Treasury through the main entrance, we go in through the back entrance.
Up until a few months ago you could get in here rather easil. But now they say you are not allowed in this way anymore. We thought we wouldn’t have a chance until we arrive at our homestay for the first couple of nights. I discovered this little treasure by searching the internet for ages and our hostess tells us straight away, after our tea that is, that we can get in through that way if we show a piece of paper with their names and phone numbers on it.
So you’ve guessed it already; the next morning we leave for the entrance with a piece of paper under our arm and we are let in straight away.
There are no huge gatherings of tourists here but just a few locals that are on their way to THE famous steps with their horse or donkey. Because through these stairs, which there are 800 of, we arrive at the Monastery. And here too, we don’t see hordes of people which gives us a terrific view of this centuries old temple that is jut as beautiful as the Treasury.
The homestay itself is a real recommendation too because in the evening the family cooks the most delicious food for us and Philou plays Frozen games with the daughter of the family. Some things are the same all over the world.
A multiple night’s stay in the Wadi Rum desert
Well this tip may not seem one off the beaten track perhaps but most tourists only stay one night in the desert. We think this is such a waste because it’s magical. We thought this was the most beautiful place in al of Jordan by far and we were happy to stay there for three days. This way you have all the time you need to take in the desert and the beautiful starry nights sky. The Wadi Rum is a protected area and has it’s restrictions too.
We stop at the visitors centre to acquire an entrance pass and park our car in the village of Wadi Musa, the entrance village to the desert. What draws the attention straight away is the red color of the sand road leading up to there. Aside from the North-West of Australia we’ve never seen this before. We stay the night in the desert in a Bedouin camp which is highly recommended when you visit Jordan with kids. They took us on a jeep tour through the desert where we visited a huge gorge and were we rolled down the beautiful high sand dunes.
The time in between we don’t do as much. Well, we watch the many camels passing by. They don’t move very fast. Like many times before, we feel we are in an Alladin movie, Lawrence of Arabia or Indiana Jones.
This article is written by guest blogger Ilona: “Hi, I’m Ilona Annema and I to look for adventure together with my husband and daughter (4). Every quarter we make a trip, preferably away from the masses and engulfed by nature. My ultimate travel experience was camping for three weeks in a tent between the wild animals of Uganda and taking a 5 day hike through the mountains in Chili. But I’m just as happy camping in our tent on the Veluwen, just 10 minutes from our house.”
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