Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips

I was staying at the Rumman hotel and they can arrange a pick up from anywhere in Amman and take you to the hotel  Additionally, they can organise day trips to;

  • Desert Castles of Jordan
  • Dead Sea
  • Roman City of Jerash
  • Petra
  • Wadi Rum

As a matter of fact, whichever Madaba hotel you choose, they should offer day trips to the things to see in Jordan.

Things to do in Madaba Jordan

Madaba is a peaceful city to stay with a variety of restaurants and souvenir shops all within walking distance.  However, if you’re staying a the Rumman hotel, it’s worth checking out their restaurant.  To be honest, Madaba is short on things to do other than shop and eat.  However, what it does offer is make a good base in Jordan for day trips to the more famous points of interest of Jordan.

I organised a private car and driver through the Rumman hotel for a very low price.  I took private day trips to Amman, Jerash, Desert Castles of Jordan, Dead Sea and Petra.  If there are a few of you, this private trip will be excellent value and probably cheaper than a tour.

Jerash – Roman Amphitheater

Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Northern Theater, Gerasa

On the outskirts of Amman in Jerash you’ll find the Roman city of Gerasa, which for me was more impressive than the Colosseum in Rome.  Gerasa is a huge site and it will take a few hours to appreciate the whole city.  Gerasa dates back over 5000 years to long before the era of the Roman Empire.  You are free to explore all over the northern theater and if it’s not too hot you can take a few moments to sit down and appreciate the history of the structure.  At the top of the northern theater you’ll get a great landscape shot of Gerasa and Jerash (below).

Jerash – Oval Roman Forum

Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Oval Forum, Gerasa

The oval forum and cardo maximus of Gerasa is a view to behold, it is considered to be the best preserved Roman city in the region.  Whilst walking the cardo maximus you are exposed to the hot sun, don’t forget you’ll need sunscreen, water and a hat.  You’ll pass plenty of street vendors at the entrance selling these necessary items.

Desert Castles of Jordan – Qasr Kharana Desert Castle

Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Qasr Kharana Desert Castle

In Eastern Jordan, close to the Saudi Arabia border is the Qasr Kharana desert castle.  Such a simple, yet beautiful castle and the fact that it’s located in the middle of the desert makes it extra special.  It was built in the 8th century and is one of the earliest examples of Islamic architecture.  I found Qasr Kharana to be the most interesting and beautiful of the desert castles.

Desert Castles of Jordan – Quseir Amra Desert Castle (UNESCO Site)

Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Quseir Amra Desert Castle UNESCO Site

The Quseir Amra desert castle is a UNESCO world heritage site which dates back to the 8th century.  This is the most famous of the desert castles but what destroyed.  What you’ll visit is not actually the castle but a royal retreat.

Desert Castles of Jordan – Qasr Azraq Desert Castle

Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Qasr Azraq Desert Castle

The Qasr Azraq desert castle is a fortress located outside the city of Azraq.  The fortress was built here because there is a nearby oasis, the only water source for 10,000 square kilometers.  What impresses most people about this fortress is that Lawrence of Arabia used this as his desert headquarters in the winter of 1917.  In addition, you can visit the office of Lawrence of Arabia near the entrance to the fortress.

Dead Sea – Jordan

Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Dead Sea

On the drive from Amman to Petra there are a choice of routes, the Kings highway or the Dead Sea highway.  I recommend persuading your driver to take the Dead Sea highway as you’ll be rewarded with amazing views of the Dead Sea.  I’m sure you can persuade the driver to stop at some points along the Dead Sea route too, these guys are very keen for tips.  It takes about 3 hours to reach Petra, add another hour if you take the Dead Sea route.


Things to do in Madaba Jordan + Day Trips - Petra

Most people visit Petra to view the famous Treasury (above).  But what is Petra?  Petra is in fact an ancient city over 2000 years old.  For this reason, there is much more to see than the famous Treasury.  Other points of interest of Petra include, Siq, Ad Deir and as a matter of fact, there’s a huge city to explore.  Read about my day trip to Petra Jordan.  Did I mention, the ancient city of Petra is a UNESCO site?  In addition, it’s one of the new seven wonders of the world.  Other wonders of the world include the Colosseum in Rome, Christ the Redeemer in Rio Brazil and the Great Wall of China near Beijing.

How to get from Madaba to Petra

I organised a day trip to Petra through the Rumman hotel in Madaba which is excellent value.  In fact, many cities in Jordan, Egypt and Israel offer day trips to Petra.  I recommend this site to check which trips are available from the city you’ll be visiting.  Enjoy Petra!


2019-01-01T11:50:40+00:00February 13th, 2017|Jordan, Middle East|27 Comments


  1. neha February 14, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    I love the ancient architectures that you take us through here. Particularly Northern Theater. Have to totally agree, I find them more interesting than the colosseum . Even before I read the paragraph below, looking at the picture itself reminded me of colosseum. Qasr Kharana Desert Castle and the dead sea are both remarkable as well.

  2. Kelly February 14, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    This is so great. I really don’t know too much about Jordan but the Northern theater and Desert Castle show me that there is so much to do in this country, even before you reach Petra. The Dead Sea looks amazing too. Thanks!

  3. Jillian Michelle February 15, 2017 at 1:40 am

    I’ve always wanted to travel to Jordan to see Petra! This is the first I’ve seen of all the different castles though! I’d never heard of the Quseir Amra nor the Qasr Kharana desert castles before, but now I am in complete awe! And the fact that there is an oasis nearby the Qasr Azraq Desert Castle makes it feel like something out of a fairy tale. Thanks so much for teaching me something new today! I’m adding all of these to my bucketlist! <3

  4. Maja Mexatia February 15, 2017 at 6:20 am

    The Quseir Amra desert castle is a proof that less is sometimes really more! So simple, yet so beautiful. I believe the Dead Sea route is definitely worth taking, just look at this sunset! Thank you for sharing it with us 🙂

  5. Jackie Taylor February 15, 2017 at 7:36 am

    I don’t know very much about Jordan, so I really enjoyed this post! That is incredible how far back the Quseir Amra desert castle dates to! I would love to visit that (along with the Dead Sea) when I eventually visit Jordan…. one day 🙂

  6. Bob February 15, 2017 at 11:42 am

    Jordan has always fascinated me. My bestie went 20 years ago and still talk very fondly about her trip. It’s good to hear Rumman Hotel doesn’t charge overs on the tours as so many hotels do. I’ve would have to persuade those drivers to let me spend a little longer by the Dead Sea.

  7. Geys February 15, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    If there is one place in this side of the world that I would love to visit, it would be Petra. I’ve really enjoyed all of your journey so far. It has been nice to follow up with them like we’ve been through the journey with you! That shot of the Dead Sea is perfectly timed!

  8. Susanna February 15, 2017 at 1:42 pm

    I feel like I only ever see one photo of Jordan and it’s the typical one from Petra, so I really enjoyed this post. It’s so amazing to walk and experience history so old it outdates the Romans! I’ve been to the dead sea of the Israeli side and hope I can make it back to Jordan to see these beautiful sites!

  9. Ally Emm February 19, 2017 at 6:29 pm

    Wow, beautiful pictures! I would really love to visit Jordan one day!

  10. Una-Minh February 19, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    Photos are fantastic! I love the old-world feeling they give. It actually reminds me a lot of video game worlds like in Uncharted. I’ve never been to Amman but it looks like it has a rich history and plenty to see.

  11. Cat February 20, 2017 at 2:47 am

    I don’t know much about Jordan, but it sure looks like a wonderful country for those interested in history! I would love to see this in person someday!

  12. Christopher James February 20, 2017 at 6:02 am

    And just like that, Jordan creeps to the top of my bucket-list! Thanks for sharing!

  13. Brian February 20, 2017 at 2:11 pm

    I’ll have about 4 free days in Jerusalem after TBEX next month. I’m considering going to Jordan and have bookmarked your page!

  14. Pintra February 20, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    This must of been an very interesting drive. I have visited Petra once but we took a bus from Israel, Eilat to Jordan. I loved it. Despite of that I was questioned heavily at the border while others got thru with no problems. It was very cool trip.

    Ever since I went to Petra, I have wanted to go back to Jordan and visit Amman and other places there! Thanks for telling about what all I should check out!

  15. John February 20, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    Beautiful! I would love to visit Jordan. Seeing Petra has been a goal of mine since I was pretty young.

  16. Thora February 21, 2017 at 2:22 am

    Jordon has has been on our bucket list for so long. Petra is one of the most amazing places on earth. Tanks for these great tips on getting there.

  17. Leanne February 21, 2017 at 4:27 pm

    I love the picture from the sunsset over the dead sea! I am not sure if Jordan is really for me but everyone seems to be so amazed and impressed by Petra, that I am sure I will get there one day, too! : )

  18. Jackson February 21, 2017 at 11:40 pm

    The history of this area would be absolutely incredible to witness and learn about. Thank for sharing your experiences, photos, and tips. I wonder if I will ever see it in person but what a dream it would be!

  19. Chiera February 22, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    Petra is HIGH on my bucket list! This is so cool! Thank you for sharing your journey (I love your blog btw – very cool idea :D)

  20. Melissa February 22, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    The architecture is great. I really like how you have broken it down and explained the locations in Jordan and the capital city. It is an area that I am not too familiar with so this is brilliant. I want to start traveling more off the beaten track

  21. Anjank February 23, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    Such a magnificent place. That architecture is unreal!

  22. Aisha February 24, 2017 at 5:02 pm

    Your photos are stunning and the stories behind the various destinations are so intriguing. I don’t know very much about Jordan and I knew even less about Amman but I feel like that’s changed after reading your post. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Rhiannon February 24, 2017 at 6:39 pm

    I wish your post had been around before I went to Jordan – missed out on the desert castles due to not realising their existence, but they look wonderful! Amman is often overlooked by people eager to move on to the likes of Petra, but I loved it! Jerash was also one of the highlights of my trip.

  24. michelle d February 26, 2017 at 12:50 am

    ever since I came across petra it has been on my bucketlist. It is such a fascinating and beautiful place. The architecture alone! I would love to visit one day.

  25. Doro February 26, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    I’ve always wanted to visit Jordan to go to Petra. I haven’t really done a lot of research on other places to visit in Jordan, so thanks for sharing! The Qasr Azraq desert castle looks really cool!

  26. Hendrik February 27, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    Like always I am s fascinated from all your impressions, James. Theses places you visit there at the moment are obviously so unique and different from any other places, which is really cool and interesting.
    The Qasr Kharana Desert Castle looks so magnificent, I never saw something similar like this before. Would have bee great to see, how it looks from inside, that would really interest me.

  27. Julz June 27, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    I miss Jordan. I loved living there 🙂 Such a beautiful place, with beautiful people!

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