Jordan

Active Jordan (for Teens)

Jordan has some of the most spectacular scenery in the Middle East and this tour gets you right into the heart of it, on a programme designed for active families. You will visit the highlights but also get off-the-beaten-track as you trek, cycle and ride camels across the country. If you have younger children with you we can modify some aspects of the itinerary to ensure that the activities are suitable. You will be accompanied throughout by specialist English-speaking guides.

Highlights

  Explore Roman ruins in Jerash
  Secret tunnels in Crusader castles
  Mountain bike to the Dead Sea
  Visit the hidden city of Petra
  Trek through Wadi Rum Desert
  Snorkel in the Red Sea

10 days from £1,200 pp

Plus international flights from £400

A 10-day activity holiday in Jordan with a private English-speaking chauffeur usually costs a minimum of £4,800 based on mid-range hotels (excluding international flights)

View pricing guide

Active Jordan (for Teens) day-to-day itinerary

Day 1 Amman
Arrive in Amman where you will be met by a Stubborn Mule representative and transferred to your hotel.


Day 2 Jerash & Ajlun
Drive about an hour north of Amman to the Roman ruins of Jerash. These are wonderfully preserved and extremely picturesque and it is great fun to explore some of outlying areas of the site, clambering over the ruins where goats still roam. In spring the area is a riot of wildflowers.

Later, drive into the hills for a picnic lunch in an olive grove before visiting the beautiful and little-visited crusader fortress of Ajlun. This is not one of the most famous castles in Jordan but is all the more enjoyable because of the lack of other tourists. The views from the battlements are magnificent.

You will return to Amman for the night.


Day 3 Dead Sea – Dana
Drive south of Amman for around an hour to the small town of Madaba, famous for its exquisite Byzantine mosaics. After a brief stop to visit the mosaics if you are interested, you will select your mountain bike and will start cycling. The route today can be tailored to the ages of your children and will be anywhere between 20-35km. It starts with a fairly easy ride across the plains, through gently undulating farmland before starting the long winding descent to the Dead Sea. Here the road drops more than 1,000m over a series of long switchbacks and it is wonderfully exhilarating (and not very taxing!) to whizz down the mountain with gorgeous views over the Dead Sea beyond.

When you arrive at the Dead Sea you can rejuvenate yourselves with a swim in the buoyant waters and give your skin a boost by covering it in thick gloopy mineral-rich mud.

End the day with a drive to the spectacularly beautiful Dana Nature Reserve, one of Jordan’s hidden gems and home to a remarkable diversity of flora and fauna. Here you will stay in a simple hotel with fabulous views over the reserve.


Day 4 Dana (Wadi Feynan hike)
Rise early for a full day hike down Wadi Feynan. This is a magnificent valley that descends steeply from Dana Nature Reserve down to the Dead Sea. The mountains rise sharply on each side, the craggy cliffs dotted with occasional hardy trees and red boulders strewing the route. The route is about 15km and almost all downhill with superb views all along the way. You will be accompanied by a local guide and will stop for a simple picnic lunch. Brew a pot of tea over an open fire (as the Bedouin do) and cook some flatbreads in the flames. We can arrange for you to be accompanied by a mule which younger children can ride if they start to get tired.

Spend the night camping although there is the opportunity to upgrade to a lovely eco-lodge if you would prefer.


Day 5 Little Petra
After breakfast take a 4WD jeep on the back road through the mountains to Little Petra. Along the way you still stop at some amazing sand-dunes for a spot of dune running……parents may look on indulgently at first but we challenge you not to be tempted to run full tilt down the dunes yourselves. From here the journey into the hills is stunning, a remote track that carves its way through the mountains with just the occasional shepherd and a flock of goats or a lumbering camel train.

Little Petra itself is a small ‘suburb’ of Petra located a short distance away from the main city. The ruins here are on a less grand scale than Petra itself, but there are usually very few other visitors which lends the site a unique atmosphere. This is a favourite with children and you can spend a wonderful few hours exploring the ruins and enjoying the views from a shaded spot.

Continue to Petra for the night.

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Day 6 Petra
A full day to enjoy the Nabatean ruins of Petra. The ruins are very extensive and it is great fun exploring the more remote parts of the site, clambering up to little-visited caves and following small tracks through the desert. The climb up to the monastery is highly recommended – make sure that you don’t stop at the monastery and keep going just a little further to the edge of the cliffs beyond, from where you can see across the Dead Sea to Israel.

Active families may also enjoy the climb to the ‘high point of sacrifice’, a hill near the entrance of the site where animals where sacrificed to the gods. From here you can take a back route through the ruins with few other tourists around. 


Day 7 Wadi Rum Hike
Drive to Wadi Rum, one of the most beautiful parts of Jordan. This is the land of Lawrence of Arabia, an endless desert plain punctuated by vast outcroppings of rock. These have been carved by the wind into strange shapes that look as if they have been chiselled by hand, and huge drifts of sand have blown against them to create enormous dunes.

Your hike will start with a climb up to a spring that bubbles out of the side of the mountains. Here there are fig trees and a carpet of water-mint and you can stop to enjoy the superb views over Rum valley. You then continue hiking on a narrow cliff path along the side of Jebel Rum (Rum Mountain), the huge expanse of desert stretching into the distance beneath you. It takes around 2 hours to get to the spring at Abu Aina where the hike ends.

From here you continue by 4WD, heading out into the desert, stopping to climb a rock bridge and follow a short river trail through a narrow cleft in one of the cliff faces.

This evening you will stay in a Bedouin camp and will congregate around the fire in the evening for a well-deserved feast under a blanket of stars.


Day 8 Aqaba
Rise early to watch the sunrise over the desert and perhaps take a camel ride before driving to the Red Sea town of Aqaba. This is a duty-free town and has a completely different atmosphere to most places in Jordan; this is where the locals come for a holiday and there is definitely a rather heady atmosphere of people letting their hair down (Middle-Eastern style).

The great attraction for families is perhaps less the town itself and more the rich waters of the Red Sea, which are home to a treasure trove of brightly coloured marine life. This can best be appreciated from the water so head out of town to one of the snorkelling centres, don a mask and snorkel and see if you can find Dory!

Later there are a wonderful range of restaurants to choose from, together with ice-cream parlours and traditional tea houses where people sit in the shade with a glass of mint tea and a hubbly-bubbly (water pipe).


Day 9 Kings Highway
This morning you will follow the King’s Highway north to Amman. This is the old route that cuts through the mountains, followed in days of old by camel caravans because of the frequent water holes. Along the way you can visit two magnificent crusader castles, Kerak and Shobak.

Kerak is the more famous and its vast fortified walls perched on a hill-top in a commanding position are indeed spectacular. Some parts of the castle are well restored but other are not and the children can pick their way over the tumbled rocks, finding hidden corridors that lead to forbidding dungeons.

Shobak is smaller but just as impressive, tucked in a remote valley with very few other visitors so that you often have the site to yourselves. Children will enjoy following the pitch black secret tunnel from the castle down the side of the hill to an exit point far below. There are over 350 steps and no light so bring a torch!

You will end the day in Amman.


Day 10 Kings Highway
Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

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Call us and we will be happy to provide you with a free-of-charge no obligation itinerary and quotation designed for you.

01728 752751

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