HOW TO REACH PETRA
• By bus:
You can, however hire a bus for large group bookings. The following companies provide buses for group bookings:
For details of other companies or more information please contact the Jordan Tourism Board, www.see-jordan.com.
If you are staying in a hotel ask the concierge about transport.
The cheaper option for getting to Petra is to take a public minibus or ‘service’ taxi (five passenger estate car) from the public bus station. Buses leave from Aqaba, Ma’an and Amman. If you decide to take this option you should have plenty of time on your hands. There are no scheduled departure times as you have to wait for the bus or taxi to fill up with people, and you will invariably stop for a break en-route, pick people up and drop people off.
From Amman: the bus station is called ‘Mujama` al-Janoub’ near the Middle East roundabout. Journey time is approximately 3 ˝ hours. The cost of taking the bus is JD 9.50 per person.
From Aqaba: Public buses leave from the market in the centre of town and should cost approx JD 3.000. Taking a service will cost a little more. Journey time is approximately 2 ˝ hours.
• By car
There are 3 possible routes for getting to Petra from Amman –
Desert Highway route: this is the most direct route and journey time is approximately 2 ˝ hours. From the 7th Circle, take the road towards the airport. The route to Petra is marked with brown road signs (which are used throughout the country to indicate an archaeological site as well as tourism sites).
Dead Sea route: this is a scenic route that will take you on the Dead Sea road, past Wadi Mujib. From the 7th circle in Amman take the road towards the airport and follow brown signs for the Dead Sea. After Ghor al Safi (at the end of the Dead Sea) take the winding road up into the mountains towards Tafeeleh. From Tafeeleh follow the brown signs to Petra. You will pass the Dana nature reserve. If you have time you should explore the reserve and spend the night there. For more information go to http://www.rscn.org.jo/ Just before Petra is the village of Shobak where there is an impressive crusader castle well worth a visit.
King’s Highway route: this is the longest route to Petra but the most rewarding in terms of the views of Wadi al-Wala and Wadi al-Mujib as well as other sites to see on the way. From the 7th circle in Amman take the road towards the airport and follow brown signs for Madaba. Visit the various sites in Madaba for example the mosaic Map in the church of St. George, the Madaba archaeological Park and Mount Nebo. Other sites to see on the way are Umm al-Rasas, a Byzantine church with impressive mosaics; the crusader castle in Karak; Dana nature reserve; the crusader castle in Shobak; and finally Petra.
From Aqaba: Drive out of Aqaba via Wadi Rum. If you have time take a tour in Rum or spend a night there. Contact the Jordan Tourism Board for information about guides (http://www.see-jordan.com/). Follow the Brown signs for Petra.
A private taxi to Petra from Amman will cost approximately JD 35.000 – JD 45.000, and from Aqaba will cost approximately JD 25.000.