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The 7 Best Things to Do in Amman: A Professional Guide

Amman, the capital city of Jordan, is a vibrant and bustling metropolis that is rich in history and culture. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an adrenaline junkie, there’s something for everyone in this city. In this article, we’ll explore the 7 best things to do in Amman, so you can make the most of your time in this incredible city.

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One of the top things to do in Amman is to visit the Citadel, which is perched on a hill overlooking the city. This ancient site dates back to the Bronze Age and is home to a number of fascinating ruins, including the Temple of Hercules, the Umayyad Palace, and the Byzantine Church. From the top of the hill, you’ll also get a stunning panoramic view of the city below.

Another must-see attraction in Amman is the Roman Amphitheatre, which dates back to the 2nd century AD. This impressive structure could seat up to 6,000 people and was used for a variety of events, including gladiator fights and theatrical performances. Today, the amphitheatre is still used for concerts and other cultural events, and it’s a great place to take in a show or simply admire the architecture.

Historical Landmarks in Amman

Amman is a city with a rich history that dates back thousands of years. There are many historical landmarks in Amman that are worth exploring during your visit. Here are some of the most notable ones:

The Citadel

The Citadel is one of the most famous landmarks in Amman. It is an ancient site that has been inhabited since the Bronze Age. The Citadel is located on the highest hill in Amman, and it offers stunning views of the city. Some of the highlights of the Citadel include the Temple of Hercules, the Umayyad Palace, and the Byzantine Church.

Roman Theater

The Roman Theater is another must-see landmark in Amman. It is located in the heart of the city and dates back to the 2nd century AD. The theater is still used for cultural events and performances today, and it can seat up to 6,000 people. The theater is also surrounded by other Roman ruins, such as the Odeon and the Nymphaeum.

Jordan Archaeological Museum

The Jordan Archaeological Museum is located near the Citadel and is home to some of the most important artifacts from Jordan’s history. The museum has a vast collection of artifacts from the Bronze Age to the Islamic period, including pottery, statues, and mosaics. The museum is a great place to learn about Jordan’s rich cultural heritage.

The Temple of Hercules

The Temple of Hercules is a Roman temple located within the Citadel. It is one of the most impressive structures in the Citadel, and it dates back to the 2nd century AD. The temple is dedicated to the Roman god Hercules, and it is believed to have been built during the reign of Emperor Marcus Aurelius.

Historic Sites

Amman is full of historic sites that are worth exploring. Some of the other notable sites include the Jordan Museum, the King Abdullah I Mosque, and the Rainbow Street. Each of these sites has its own unique history and offers a glimpse into Jordan’s rich cultural heritage.

In conclusion, Amman is a city that is full of history and culture. Exploring the historical landmarks in Amman is a great way to learn about the city’s past and experience its unique charm.

Museums and Art Galleries

Amman is home to a variety of museums and art galleries that offer a glimpse into the rich history and culture of the city. Here are some of the best museums and art galleries you should visit during your trip to Amman.

Jordan Museum

The Jordan Museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in learning about the history and culture of Jordan. The museum has an impressive collection of artifacts, including ancient pottery, coins, and tools, as well as exhibits on the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Nabataean Kingdom. The museum is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and admission costs 5 JOD.

Royal Automobile Museum

Car enthusiasts will love the Royal Automobile Museum, which houses a collection of more than 70 cars belonging to the royal family. The museum also has exhibits on Jordan’s transportation history, including bicycles, motorcycles, and planes. The museum is open daily from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, and admission costs 3 JOD.

Jordan Archaeological Museum

The Jordan Archaeological Museum is located in the Amman Citadel and contains artifacts from various archaeological sites around Jordan. The museum has exhibits on the Bronze Age, Iron Age, and Islamic periods, as well as a collection of ancient coins. The museum is open daily from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, and admission costs 2 JOD.

Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts

Art lovers should visit the Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, which has a collection of modern and contemporary art by Jordanian and international artists. The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions and cultural events throughout the year. The gallery is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and admission is free.

Darat al Funun-The Khalid Shoman Foundation

Darat al Funun is a contemporary art center that hosts exhibitions, workshops, and cultural events. The center is located in a restored 1920s villa and has a beautiful garden with views of the city. Admission is free, and the center is open Sunday to Thursday from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm.

Museum of Popular Traditions

The Museum of Popular Traditions showcases traditional Jordanian crafts and costumes, as well as exhibits on Jordanian folklore and music. The museum is located in the historic Jabal al-Weibdeh neighborhood and is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. Admission costs 2 JOD.

Umayyad Palace

The Umayyad Palace is located in the Amman Citadel and was built during the 8th century. The palace has been restored and contains exhibits on Islamic art and architecture, as well as a beautiful courtyard with views of the city. The palace is open daily from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, and admission costs 2 JOD.

Whether you’re interested in history, art, or culture, Amman’s museums and art galleries have something for everyone. Be sure to add these attractions to your itinerary for a memorable trip to the city.

Cultural Experiences

Amman is a city rich in Jordanian culture, and there are plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in it. One of the best ways to do this is by visiting the King Abdullah Mosque, one of the most important and impressive religious sites in the city. This modern mosque is located in the heart of Amman and boasts stunning architecture and intricate details that are sure to leave you in awe.

If you’re interested in learning more about Jordanian culture, consider hiring a local guide to take you on a tour of the city. They can show you hidden gems that you might not find on your own, as well as provide insight into the history and traditions of the country. A local guide can also take you to Rainbow Street, a colorful and vibrant area that is home to many shops, cafes, and restaurants.

Another cultural experience not to be missed is visiting the Philadelphia area of Amman. This area is home to many historic buildings and landmarks, including the Al-Husseini Mosque, which is one of the oldest and most important mosques in the city. Take a stroll through the streets of Philadelphia and immerse yourself in the rich history and culture of Amman.

Overall, there are many cultural experiences to be had in Amman, and these are just a few of the highlights. Whether you’re interested in architecture, religion, or simply learning more about Jordanian culture, there is something for everyone in this vibrant city.

Outdoor Adventures

Amman is a great destination for outdoor enthusiasts, with a variety of activities to choose from. Whether you want to explore the city on foot, take a day trip to nearby attractions, or venture out into the wilderness for an adventure, there’s something for everyone.

One of the top outdoor activities in Amman is a walking tour of the city. You can explore the ancient Roman Temple of Hercules, visit the Citadel, and wander through the bustling markets and streets of downtown Amman. Walking tours are a great way to get a feel for the city and learn about its rich history and culture.

If you’re looking for more adventure, consider taking a day trip to Petra or the Dead Sea. Petra is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most famous attractions in Jordan. You can explore the ancient city on foot, hike through the surrounding mountains, and even take a camel ride. The Dead Sea is another popular day trip destination, known for its healing properties and stunning scenery.

For those who want to get off the beaten path, Wadi Rum is a must-visit destination. This desert valley is famous for its red sand dunes, towering rock formations, and stunning sunsets. You can take a jeep tour, go rock climbing, or even spend the night in a Bedouin camp.

No matter what your interests, there are plenty of outdoor adventures to be had in Amman and the surrounding area. So pack your bags, grab your hiking boots, and get ready for an unforgettable trip to Jordan.

Shopping and Handicrafts

Amman is a great place to shop for unique handicrafts and souvenirs. The city is known for its traditional crafts and you can find a variety of shops and markets selling handmade items. Here are some of the best places to shop for handicrafts in Amman:

  • Souk Jara: This is a popular outdoor market that takes place every Friday during the summer months. You can find a wide variety of handicrafts, including pottery, jewelry, textiles, and more. The market also has food stalls and live music, making it a great place to spend an afternoon.

  • Jordan Craft Center: This is a great place to shop for high-quality handicrafts made by local artisans. The center has a wide variety of items, including ceramics, textiles, and jewelry. You can also take a tour of the center and see the artisans at work.

  • Abdali Mall: This is one of the largest shopping malls in Amman and has a wide variety of stores selling everything from clothing to electronics. The mall also has a cinema and a food court, making it a great place to spend a day shopping.

  • Rainbow Street: This is a trendy street in the historic Jabal Amman district that is known for its cafes, restaurants, and boutique shops. You can find a variety of unique items here, including clothing, jewelry, and home decor.

When shopping for handicrafts in Amman, it’s important to be aware of the cultural significance of the items you’re purchasing. Many of the items sold in markets like Souk Jara are made by local artisans using traditional techniques that have been passed down for generations. By purchasing these items, you’re not only supporting local businesses but also preserving the cultural heritage of the region.

In conclusion, Amman is a great place to shop for unique handicrafts and souvenirs. Whether you’re looking for traditional crafts or trendy boutique items, you’re sure to find something that catches your eye. So, put on your comfortable shoes and get ready to explore the bustling markets and shopping centers of Amman!

Food and Drink

Amman is a foodie’s paradise, with its rich and diverse culinary scene. From traditional street food to fine dining restaurants, there is something for everyone. Here are the top food and drink experiences you should not miss while in Amman.

Cafe Culture

Amman is well-known for its vibrant cafe culture. Whether you’re looking for a cozy spot to read a book or a lively place to catch up with friends, there are plenty of cafes to choose from. Some of the most popular cafes in Amman include Books@Cafe, a trendy spot with a great selection of books, and Turtle Green Tea Bar, a charming tea house with a beautiful outdoor garden.

Food Tours

One of the best ways to explore Amman’s food scene is by taking a food tour. There are several food tour companies in Amman that offer guided tours to some of the city’s best food spots. Beit Sitti, for example, offers a unique cooking and dining experience where you can learn how to cook traditional Jordanian dishes with local women. Carmen’s Kitchen is another popular food tour company that takes you on a culinary journey through Amman’s markets and street food stalls.

Traditional Jordanian Cuisine

No visit to Amman is complete without trying some of the city’s traditional Jordanian dishes. Some of the most popular dishes include Mansaf, a hearty lamb and rice dish served with yogurt sauce, and Falafel, a deep-fried chickpea patty served in a pita bread with vegetables and tahini sauce. For a sweet treat, try Knafeh, a traditional Jordanian dessert made with shredded phyllo dough, cheese, and syrup.

Amman’s food and drink scene is diverse and exciting, offering something for every taste and budget. Whether you’re looking for a cozy cafe or a food tour, make sure to explore the city’s culinary offerings during your visit.

Day Trips from Amman

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If you have some extra time in Amman and want to explore the surrounding areas, day trips are a great option. Here are some of the best day trips from Amman that you can take:

Jerash

Jerash is a must-visit destination for history buffs. This ancient city is home to some of the best-preserved Roman ruins in the world. You can easily spend a full day exploring the site and learning about the history of the area. The drive from Amman to Jerash takes about 45 minutes, and there are plenty of tour companies that offer day trips to the site.

Ajloun

Ajloun is another historical site that is worth visiting. This 12th-century castle was built by the Muslim leader Salah al-Din to protect the area from the Crusaders. Today, the castle is open to visitors and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside. The drive from Amman to Ajloun takes about an hour, and there are plenty of tour companies that offer day trips to the castle.

Italy

Okay, so Italy isn’t exactly a day trip from Amman, but hear us out. If you’re looking for an adventure, why not take a flight to Italy? With direct flights from Amman to Rome, you can explore the ancient ruins of the Colosseum, the Vatican City, and the Trevi Fountain. It’s a bit of a splurge, but it’s definitely worth it if you have the time and the budget.

Egypt

Like Italy, Egypt isn’t exactly a day trip from Amman, but it’s definitely worth considering if you have some extra time. With direct flights from Amman to Cairo, you can explore the pyramids, the Sphinx, and the Egyptian Museum. It’s a bit of a longer trip, but it’s definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Overall, there are plenty of day trips from Amman that you can take to explore the surrounding areas. Whether you’re interested in history, adventure, or just want to see something new, there’s something for everyone.

Planning Your Visit

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If you’re planning a trip to Amman, there are a few things you should keep in mind to make the most out of your stay. Here are some tips to help you plan your visit:

Jordan Pass

Before you arrive, consider purchasing a Jordan Pass which includes entry to over 40 attractions, including Petra and the Amman Citadel. This can save you money and time when visiting multiple sites.

Itinerary

When planning your itinerary, make sure to include some of the top picks such as the Amman Citadel, the Roman Theatre, and the Umayyad Desert Castles. You can also join Amman tours to explore the city and learn about its history and culture.

Places to Visit

There are plenty of places to visit in Amman, from historical sites to shopping malls. Make sure to check out the bustling markets such as the Souk Jara and the Rainbow Street for a taste of local life.

Sightseeing

When sightseeing in Amman, be sure to wear comfortable shoes as some sites require walking and climbing. It’s also a good idea to bring sunscreen and a hat, especially during the summer months when the weather can be hot and sunny.

Getting Around

To get around Amman, you can use taxis, buses, or join a private tour. If you plan to drive, keep in mind that traffic can be congested and chaotic in some areas.

By following these tips, you can plan a memorable visit to Amman and experience all the things to do in this vibrant city.

Frequently Asked Questions

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What are some affordable activities to do in Amman?

Amman is a great destination for budget travelers. Some affordable activities to do in Amman include visiting the Roman Amphitheater, exploring the lively markets, and taking a walk down Rainbow Street to experience the local culture. You can also visit the Jordan Museum to learn about the country’s history and culture.

What are some recommended things to do in Amman at night?

Amman has a vibrant nightlife scene with plenty of things to do. Some recommended things to do in Amman at night include visiting the Citadel to enjoy a panoramic view of the city, exploring the cafes and restaurants on Rainbow Street, and checking out the live music scene at Blue Fig.

What are some unique and exciting experiences to have in Amman?

Amman offers a variety of unique and exciting experiences for travelers. You can take a cooking class to learn how to make traditional Jordanian dishes, go on a hot air balloon ride to see the city from above, or take a day trip to the Dead Sea to float in the salty water.

What are some must-visit places in Amman city?

Amman has many must-visit places that showcase the city’s rich history and culture. Some of these places include the Roman Amphitheater, the Citadel, and the Jordan Museum. You can also visit the King Abdullah Mosque to see its beautiful architecture and learn about Islamic culture.

What are some adult-friendly activities to do in Amman?

Amman has plenty of adult-friendly activities to do, including visiting the many art galleries and museums in the city, going on a wine tasting tour at one of the local wineries, or enjoying a relaxing spa day at one of the city’s luxury hotels.

What are the top things to do in Jordan besides Amman?

Jordan has many other attractions besides Amman that are worth visiting. Some of the top things to do in Jordan include visiting the ancient city of Petra, exploring the Wadi Rum desert, and taking a dip in the Dead Sea. You can also go on a hiking trip in the Dana Biosphere Reserve or visit the historic city of Jerash.

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