The city of Aqaba is rich in history, culture, and heritage, making it one of Jordan’s prominent spots. Over the years, each era has left its distinguished imprint, leading to what you see now in Aqaba. Being Jordan’s only coastal city, it is a remarkable landmark with no equal and we didn’t even start with the Red Sea. We’ve come up with the most significant places to have a memorable vacation in Aqaba. Wondering where to go in Aqaba, keep reading!
Just a short walk from the Gulf of Aqaba, Mamluk Fort is standing evidence on Jordan’s rich history. While it may not seem much, you will definitely be impressed. As you step inside, you will immediately be transferred to a different era. Each corner tells a different story from a different part of history. Tour the fort’s different parts, including the prison, execution chamber, and horse stables. The imposing castle was involved in one of the most famous battles of World War I. Over the years, it served as a “khan,’’ hosting pilgrims during their Hajj journey to Mecca. You may recognize this place if you watched the memorable movie “Lawrence of Arabia.”
Ruins of Ayla
Complement your high dosage of history with a visit to the ancient ruins of Ayla, shall we?! – The ancient city of Ayla is the best example of what Islamic architecture should be. You will be standing in the prominent city built by Caliph Othman Ben Afan around 650 AD. Outstanding! Tour the magnificent city, exploring the mosques, rooms, towers, and ancient buildings called “Misr.” Just a short walk and you will find the ancient ruins of a church, believed to be the oldest in the world. You can’t help but imagine the people who lived there, along with their vibrant daily lives! And, you know what is the best thing; you can visit the ancient city and discover its hidden treasures for free!
Sherif al-Hussein bin Ali Mosque
With high religious significance, Sherif al-Hussein bin Ali Mosque is one of the top tourist attractions in Aqaba. The mosque was named after the famous leader of the Arab Revolt, resulting in an architectural masterpiece. Being in Aqaba, don’t miss the spiritual visit to the striking structure. You will be stunned by the white stones, intricate minarets, and wondrous arches.
Aqaba Archaeological Museum
Situated near the majestic Aqaba flagpole, you can never surpass the Aqaba Archaeological Museum. Tour the significant museum and learn more about Jordan’s history in such an interesting way. The museum is home to numerous striking artifacts, dating back to the Bronze Age. You will view an incredible collection of medieval pieces such as the Fatimid coins from the 7th century. A large inscription of Quranic verse is among the noteworthy pieces of the museum. A history enthusiast or not, you are going to love this trip! And, if you have extra time, stop by one of the coffee shops in the area or enjoy a camel ride around the famous flagpole.
The Stunning Red Sea
After these activities, why don’t you reward yourself with a relaxing vacation by the Red Sea?!
Sink your toes into the golden sand, feel the fresh breeze against your face, and have some moments of peace by the Red Sea. What can be better?! You can never go wrong with a day trip to the Red Sea Beaches! The water temperature at the Red Sea is ideal for swimming, along with the other water activities. Explore the lush aquatic surrounding with snorkeling or diving trips. Escape the world’s buzz, bounce into the water, and lose yourself in the striking beauty. Compete with the colorful fish and marvel at the magnificent coral reefs. If you’re not in the mood for water activities, pamper yourself with a sunny day, enjoying the striking scenery. Bask in the sun as you chill by the beach with a cold drink in your hand. All you see is the turquoise water and all you hear is the water crashing against your feet. Soothing, right?!
The Buzzing Souk
If you want to catch a glimpse of the local culture, you find better than the bustling Souk! Have a new experience, meet new people, and have fun in the heart of the city. Stroll up and down the Souk and see what the merchants have to offer. If you want to buy some souvenirs, you‘ll find plenty of traditional handicrafts and local products to choose from. It’s always a good idea to buy vibrant souvenirs to remind you of the perfect vacation in Aqaba. The locals are very friendly, so don’t be surprised if they insist you join them for some tea.
Aqaba Bird Observatory
Lying between the vast desert, the Aqaba Bird Observatory is heaven, especially for nature lovers. Explore the magnificent forests, enjoying the contrast between the golden desert and green landscapes, surrounded by the sparkling Red Sea. If you love bird watching, spring and autumn will be the perfect seasons to visit the place. The best time to hit the magnificent spot is during the migration season when you can view more than 70 different species.
Ready to go!
On thinking about the perfect vacation, what about a charming mix of enchanting beaches, prominent historical sites, and vibrant nightlife? – yes, Aqaba has them all! You need more, check our trips to Petra, Jesus Baptism site, and Mount Nebo. If you’re up to an adrenaline adventure, hit the striking desert of Wadi Rum and have the memories of a lifetime!