10 Tips for an Affordable Petra Trip: Exploring Petra on a Budget

If you’re planning a trip to Petra, Jordan, you might be concerned about the cost. Petra is one of the world’s most famous archaeological sites, but it doesn’t have to be expensive to visit. With a little planning, you can enjoy a budget-friendly trip to Petra without sacrificing the experience.


To help you plan your affordable Petra trip, we’ve compiled ten tips to help you save money without missing out on the highlights. From buying the Jordan Pass to packing your own snacks, these tips will help you stretch your budget and make the most of your visit to Petra. Keep reading to learn how you can experience Petra on a budget.

Planning Your Petra Trip

Petra is a must-visit destination for many travelers, but it can be expensive. However, with careful planning, you can visit Petra on a budget without sacrificing the quality of your trip. Here are some tips to help you plan your affordable Petra trip.

Best Time to Visit Petra

The best time to visit Petra is during the spring and fall when the weather is mild and the crowds are smaller. Summer can be very hot and crowded, and winter can be cold and rainy. Plan your trip accordingly to avoid the crowds and extreme weather conditions.

How to Get to Petra

There are several ways to get to Petra. The most convenient way is by rental car or taxi. However, if you’re on a budget, you can take public transport such as JETT buses, which are comfortable and affordable. Check the JETT website for schedules and fares.

Petra Entrance Fee

As of 2023, a one-day ticket to visit Petra costs 50 JD (£57 / 70 USD). To save money, consider purchasing a two-day or three-day ticket. Children under 12 enter free. Petra By Night tickets cost 17 JD.

Petra Maps

Make sure to grab a map of Petra before you start your trip. Maps are available at the visitor center, and they will help you navigate the site and plan your visit.


There are several affordable accommodation options in Petra, including hostels, guesthouses, and campsites. Look for accommodation outside of the Petra site to save money.

Food and Drink

Food and drinks can be expensive inside Petra, so it’s a good idea to bring your own snacks and water. There are also several affordable restaurants and cafes outside of the Petra site.

Guided Tours

Guided tours can be expensive, but they can also enhance your Petra experience. Consider joining a group tour to split the cost or hiring a local guide for a more personalized experience.

Itinerary Planning

Plan your Petra itinerary carefully to make the most of your time and money. Prioritize the must-see sites and attractions and allocate enough time for each one. Consider visiting Petra during the weekdays to avoid the weekend crowds.


Petra is generally a safe destination, but it’s always a good idea to take precautions. Keep your valuables safe and be aware of your surroundings. If you’re traveling alone, consider joining a group or hiring a local guide for added safety.

With these tips, you can plan an affordable Petra trip without sacrificing the quality of your experience.

Understanding Petra’s History

Petra is an ancient city located in Jordan that was once inhabited by the Nabataean people. It is also known as the Rose City due to the color of the rocks that make up the city. The Nabataean Kingdom was established in the 4th century BC and Petra became its capital. The city was built on a trade route, which made it an important center for trade and commerce.

Petra is an archaeological site that is considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also known as the Lost City of Petra, as it was lost to the world for centuries until it was rediscovered in 1812 by a Swiss explorer named Johann Ludwig Burckhardt. The city is famous for its rock-cut architecture and its water conduit system, which allowed the city to flourish in the desert.

The Nabataeans were skilled traders and builders, and they used their wealth to create a magnificent city out of the rocks. They carved their homes, temples, and tombs into the sandstone cliffs, creating a unique and stunning landscape. The city was abandoned in the 7th century AD, and it was left to the elements until its rediscovery in the 19th century.

Today, Petra is a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors from all over the world. It is a testament to the ingenuity and creativity of the Nabataean people, and it is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in history and archaeology. If you are planning a trip to Petra, it is important to understand its history and significance as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Navigating Petra

Navigating Petra can be an overwhelming experience, but with a little bit of planning, you can make the most of your trip without breaking the bank. Here are a few tips to help you navigate Petra on a budget.

Plan Your Route

Petra is a vast archaeological site with many different trails and paths to explore. Before you start your journey, it is essential to plan your route. Start by familiarizing yourself with the map of Petra and identifying the sites you want to visit. The main trail is the most popular route, and it takes you through many of the significant sites, such as the Siq, the Royal Tombs, the Theater, and the Street of Facades.

Take Advantage of Free Activities

While Petra has many paid attractions, there are also several free activities you can enjoy. For example, hiking the Siq Trail is free, and it offers stunning views of the Siq. The Street of Facades is also free to explore, and it is home to several tombs and temples.

Avoid the Crowds

Petra can get crowded, especially during peak season. To avoid the crowds, start your day early and head straight to the Monastery or the High Place of Sacrifice. These sites are less crowded in the morning, and you can enjoy them in peace.

Bring a Map

Petra is a vast site, and it is easy to get lost. Bringing a map with you can help you navigate the site and ensure that you don’t miss any of the significant sites. You can buy a map at the Visitor Center or download one online before your trip.

Wear Comfortable Shoes

Petra is a vast site, and you will be doing a lot of walking. It is essential to wear comfortable shoes that can handle uneven terrain. Sneakers or hiking boots are a great option.

Navigating Petra can be an exciting and rewarding experience, and with a little bit of planning, you can make the most of your trip without breaking the bank.

Costs and Budgeting


Petra is a must-visit destination in Jordan, but it can be expensive. However, with some careful planning and budgeting, you can enjoy this ancient city without breaking the bank. Here are some tips to help you budget for your Petra trip.

Jordan Pass

One of the best ways to save money on your Petra trip is by purchasing the Jordan Pass. This pass includes the cost of your visa, entrance fees to over 40 Jordanian tourist attractions, including Petra, and a two-day hop-on-hop-off bus tour in Amman. The cost of the Jordan Pass varies depending on the package you choose, but it can save you a significant amount of money in the long run.


When it comes to tickets, there are various options available. As of 2023, a one-day ticket to visit Petra costs 50 JD (£57 / 70 USD). However, if you plan to spend more than one day in Petra, it’s more cost-effective to purchase a two-day ticket for 55 JD or a three-day ticket for 60 JD. Children under 12 enter free, so keep that in mind if you’re traveling with kids.

Entrance Fee

In addition to the ticket cost, there is also an entrance fee to Petra. This fee is included in the Jordan Pass, but if you don’t have the pass, you’ll need to pay an additional fee. As of 2023, the entrance fee is 1 JD for Jordanian citizens and residents, 50 JD for tourists staying in Jordan for more than one night, and 90 JD for tourists staying in Jordan for less than one night.


It’s important to note that most places in Petra do not accept credit cards, so it’s essential to have cash on hand. There are ATMs available in Petra, but they can be unreliable, so it’s best to bring enough cash with you to cover your expenses.

By following these tips and being mindful of your spending, you can enjoy Petra on a budget without sacrificing the experience.

Staying Near Petra

When planning a budget-friendly trip to Petra, finding affordable accommodation is crucial. Luckily, there are several options for staying near Petra that won’t break the bank.

The town of Wadi Musa is the closest town to Petra and is where most tourists stay. It’s full of restaurants, bars, hotels, and hostels. You can find a range of accommodation options in Wadi Musa, from budget-friendly hostels to luxury hotels. Some of the popular budget-friendly hotels in Wadi Musa include the Al Anbat Midtown Hotel and the Petra Capsule Hostel.

If you’re looking for a unique and affordable experience, consider staying at the Seven Wonders Bedouin Camp. This camp is located in the desert near Petra and offers traditional Bedouin-style accommodations. You can choose to stay in a tent or a cave room, both of which are equipped with basic amenities. The camp also offers a variety of activities, including camel rides and desert hikes.

When choosing your accommodation near Petra, make sure to consider the location and proximity to the Petra site. Staying within walking distance of the site can save you time and money on transportation. Additionally, booking your accommodation in advance can help you save money and ensure availability.

Overall, there are plenty of affordable accommodation options near Petra. Whether you choose to stay in Wadi Musa or a Bedouin camp, you can find a comfortable and budget-friendly place to rest after a day of exploring the ancient city.

Dining in Petra


When it comes to dining in Petra, you’ll find plenty of options to suit all budgets. From street food stalls to high-end restaurants, there’s something for everyone.


Petra has a variety of restaurants that cater to different tastes and budgets. For a fine dining experience, head to Petra Kitchen, which offers a range of traditional Jordanian dishes. If you’re looking for something more casual, check out Al Wadi Restaurant, which serves up delicious Middle Eastern cuisine at affordable prices.

Street Food

If you’re on a tight budget, you’ll be pleased to know that Petra has plenty of street food options. You can grab a quick bite to eat from one of the many food stalls located throughout the city. Some of the most popular street food dishes include falafel, shawarma, and manakish.

Meal Prices

The cost of meals in Petra can vary depending on where you eat. A meal at a mid-range restaurant will cost you around JOD 15-20 per person. If you opt for street food, you can expect to pay around JOD 2-5 for a quick snack. Keep in mind that prices may be higher in tourist areas.


When dining in Petra, it’s important to keep a few things in mind. Firstly, it’s customary to tip around 10% of the total bill. Secondly, be sure to check if the restaurant charges a service charge before leaving a tip. Finally, make sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, especially during the hot summer months.

Special Petra Experiences


While visiting Petra, there are some special experiences that you won’t want to miss. Here are a few recommendations for making the most of your trip:

Petra by Night

One of the most magical experiences at Petra is Petra by Night. This is a candlelit tour of the Treasury that takes place on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings. The tour starts at 8:30 pm and lasts for around two hours. During the tour, you’ll walk through the Siq and arrive at the Treasury, which is illuminated by hundreds of candles. It’s an unforgettable experience that you won’t want to miss.

Candles at the Treasury

If you’re visiting Petra during the day, you can still experience the magic of the Treasury by lighting a candle inside. There are vendors selling candles at the entrance to the Treasury, and you can purchase one for a small fee. Lighting a candle inside the Treasury is a unique and special experience that you’ll remember forever.

Other Experiences

In addition to Petra by Night and lighting candles at the Treasury, there are plenty of other special experiences to be had at Petra. For example, you can take a camel ride through the Siq, or hike up to the Monastery for a stunning view of the surrounding landscape. Be sure to ask your guide or hotel for recommendations on other unique experiences to try while you’re in Petra.

By taking advantage of these special experiences, you’ll make your trip to Petra even more memorable. Whether you’re visiting during the day or at night, there are plenty of opportunities to create unforgettable memories.

Safety and Comfort

When planning a trip to Petra, safety and comfort should be your top priorities. Here are some tips to help you stay safe and comfortable during your visit:

Dress Appropriately

Petra is a conservative area, and visitors should dress appropriately to show respect for the local culture. It is recommended to wear clothing that covers your shoulders and knees. Loose-fitting, breathable clothing is also recommended, as it can help keep you cool in the hot desert climate.

Wear Comfortable Shoes

Petra is a large site with a lot of walking involved, so comfortable shoes are a must. Closed-toe shoes are recommended to protect your feet from rocks and debris. Sneakers or hiking shoes with good grip are great options for exploring Petra.

Protect Yourself from the Sun

The desert sun can be intense, so it’s important to protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays. Wear a hat or a scarf to protect your head and face from the sun. Apply sunscreen before you leave your accommodation and reapply it throughout the day to avoid sunburn.

Use the Toilets

There are public toilets available throughout Petra, so be sure to use them when you need to. It’s also a good idea to carry some toilet paper and hand sanitizer with you, as not all of the toilets have these amenities.

Avoid Crowds

Petra can get crowded, especially during peak season. Try to visit early in the morning or later in the afternoon to avoid the crowds. You can also explore the less popular areas of Petra to avoid the crowds.

By following these tips, you can stay safe and comfortable during your visit to Petra without breaking the bank.

Exploring Beyond Petra


While Petra is the main attraction in Jordan, there are plenty of other places to explore beyond the ancient city. Here are some destinations to consider for a well-rounded trip:


Jordan’s capital city, Amman, is a bustling metropolis with plenty of historical and cultural sites to explore. The city is home to the Roman Amphitheatre, the Citadel, and the Jordan Museum, which houses artifacts from across the country’s history. Amman is also a great place to sample traditional Jordanian cuisine, with street food stalls and upscale restaurants serving everything from falafel to mansaf.


If you’re looking to relax by the sea, head to Aqaba on the Red Sea. This beach town is a popular spot for scuba diving and snorkeling, with colorful coral reefs and crystal-clear waters. Aqaba is also home to the Aqaba Fort, a 14th-century castle that offers great views of the city and the sea.

Wadi Rum

For a taste of the Jordanian desert, take a day trip to Wadi Rum. This protected area is home to stunning rock formations, sand dunes, and ancient petroglyphs. You can explore the desert on foot, by jeep, or even on camelback. Wadi Rum is also a popular spot for stargazing, with clear night skies and little light pollution.

Dead Sea

The Dead Sea is a unique natural wonder that’s worth a visit while you’re in Jordan. This saltwater lake is the lowest point on Earth and has a high concentration of minerals that are said to have healing properties. You can float in the buoyant water, cover yourself in mineral-rich mud, and relax in one of the many spa resorts that line the shore.

Desert Highway

If you’re driving from Amman to Petra, consider taking the Desert Highway instead of the more direct route. This scenic road takes you through the heart of Jordan’s desert landscape, with views of sand dunes, rocky outcroppings, and Bedouin encampments. Along the way, you can stop at roadside cafes for tea and snacks, and take in the beauty of the desert.

By exploring beyond Petra, you’ll get a more complete picture of Jordan’s diverse landscape and culture. Whether you’re interested in history, nature, or relaxation, there’s something for everyone in this beautiful country.

Booking Your Petra Tour


Petra is a popular tourist attraction and there are many tours and tour guides available to help you explore this ancient city. Booking a guided tour can be a great way to learn about the history and culture of Petra while making the most of your time there.

When booking your Petra tour, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure that you get the most affordable and enjoyable experience possible. Here are some tips:

  • Book in advance: Booking your tour in advance can save you money and ensure availability. Many tour operators offer discounts for booking early, so it’s worth doing some research and booking ahead of time.

  • Compare prices: There are many tour operators offering tours of Petra, so it’s important to compare prices and packages to find the best deal. Look for tours that include entrance fees and transportation to and from Petra.

  • Choose a reputable tour operator: When booking your tour, make sure to choose a reputable tour operator with good reviews. This will ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable experience.

  • Consider a group tour: Group tours can be a more affordable option than private tours. They also offer the opportunity to meet other travelers and make new friends.

  • Check opening hours: Petra has specific opening hours, so make sure to check these before booking your tour. This will ensure that you have enough time to explore the site.

By following these tips, you can book a guided tour of Petra that is both affordable and enjoyable.

Frequently Asked Questions


How can I visit Petra on a budget?

Visiting Petra on a budget is possible with some planning and research. One of the best ways to save money is by buying the Jordan Pass, which includes the entrance fee to Petra and many other attractions in Jordan. Another way to save money is by staying in Wadi Musa, the town located next to Petra, where you can find budget-friendly accommodations and restaurants.

What are some affordable tour options for Petra?

If you prefer to take a tour, there are many affordable options available. You can join a group tour or hire a local guide to show you around. It’s important to research and compare prices beforehand to find the best deal. Some tour companies may offer discounts if you book in advance or during the low season.

Is it cheaper to visit Petra from Israel or Jordan?

It’s generally cheaper to visit Petra from Jordan since the entrance fee is included in the Jordan Pass. If you’re in Israel, you can take a bus or taxi to the border and then cross into Jordan. However, keep in mind that you’ll need to pay for a visa and transportation to Petra, which can add up.

What is the average cost of food and drinks in Petra?

The cost of food and drinks in Petra can vary depending on where you eat. Inside the site, prices are generally higher than in Wadi Musa. You can find budget-friendly options in the town, such as street food or local restaurants. It’s also a good idea to bring snacks and water with you to save money.

Are there any free activities to do in Petra?

There are several free activities to do in Petra, such as hiking to the Monastery or the High Place of Sacrifice. You can also explore the Treasury and other sites on your own without a guide. Keep in mind that some areas may require a ticket, so it’s important to check beforehand.

Can I use credit cards or should I bring cash to Petra?

While some places in Wadi Musa may accept credit cards, it’s a good idea to bring cash with you to Petra. Inside the site, cash is the only accepted form of payment. You can exchange money at banks or exchange offices in Wadi Musa before entering Petra.

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