Aqaba Travel Essentials


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Ideal duration: 2 days

Best Time: April to June and September to November Read More

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"Jewel of the Red Sea"

Aqaba Tourism

Aqaba is the only coastal city in Jordan located between Asia and Africa on the northeastern tip of the Red Sea. Aqaba is popular for its beaches, seafood cafes, stunning desert scenery and friendly locals. 

Aqaba forms a part of Jordan's golden triangle of tourism, along with Wadi Rum and Petra. A walk through Aqaba's waterfront offers a taste of its rich history. The city's heart is its souk, a bustling market filled with shops and stalls selling handcrafted keepsakes. Apart from the forts and museums, Aqaba is known for snorkelling. With over 25 dive sites, it is the base for diving into the coral reefs of the Red Sea or travelling to the picturesque Wadi Rum.

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Currency in Aqaba

Major cards are accepted here. No other currency is accepted in Aqaba other than JD. One must always carry some cash in JD currency because small shops only accept cash whereas some of the big hotels and shops accept cards.

Language of Aqaba

The commonly used language in Aqaba is Arabic though some of the people do understand and talk in English. Some of the Arabic words are Salam - Marhaba(Hello), Sabah El-Khair(Good morning), Shukran(Thank you)

History of Aqaba

In the 10th century, a Muslim traveller described Aqaba as 'a great city' and a meeting place for pilgrims en route to and from Mecca. In AD 1024, the town was sacked by local tribes and in 1068 a huge earthquake split the old city of Ayla in two, consigning the town to a minor historical role. By the beginning of the 16th century, the town had been swallowed up by the Ottoman Empire and lost much of its significance when the main trading area of the region was moved to Baghdad in the middle of the 16th century. For about 500 years, until the Arab Revolt during WWI, Aqaba remained an insignificant fishing village. After WWI, the border between Trans-Jordan and Saudi Arabia had still not been defined, so Britain arbitrarily drew a line a few kilometres south of Aqaba. The Saudis disputed the claim but took no action. As the port of Aqaba grew, the limited coastline proved insufficient, so in 1965 King Hussein traded 6000 sq km of Jordanian desert for another 12km of coastline with Saudi Arabia.

Nightlife in Aqaba

Aqaba doesn't have much for nightlife, though it has a lot of 5-star lounges and bars. Some of the lounges and bars are Oasis lounge, Tumbleweed bar, Rovers and Friends. There is also a seaport in Jordan that transforms into a partying haven after sundown.

Shopping in Aqaba

In Aqaba, one can easily find a lot of souvenir shops. Also, a brand called 'Made in Jordan' in which all the things like; pottery, weaving, mosaic, and silver workshops are made by local women by taking part in projects all over Jordan. If one wants to buy dead sea products, the South Kingdom bazaar is the best shop for it. They sell all the old local favourites, like ostrich eggs and camel bone boxes.

Best Time to Visit Aqaba

How to Reach Aqaba

How to Reach Overview

Aqaba can be reached by flight,taxi and bus from Amman. Regular buses are available from Amman and flights are available to Amman from all over the world.¾

How to reach Aqaba by flight

International airports in Amman/ Eilat, Israel. Most airlines fly to Amman and then Royal Jordanian have internal flights to Aqaba. Charter flights from Sweden and England fly direct to Aqaba in high seasons.

How to reach Aqaba by road

The nearest cities to Aqaba are Petra and Amman. The best way to travel from Aqaba to Petra is to take green taxis. Taxi from Petra to Aqaba costs around 35-40 JD.¾

How to reach Aqaba by train

Aqaba can not be reached by rail from nearby cities.¾

How to reach Aqaba by bus

After arriving in Amman, tourist buses are available through out the day to Aqaba, costing around 7 JD, approx. 4 Hour drive. A service taxi will usually cost around 90 JD per car.

How to reach Aqaba by waterways

The port of Aqaba is the only port in Jordan. Regular ferry routes to Taba, a nearby place are available on a daily basis and are operated by several companies such as; Sindbad for Marine Transportation and Arab bridge maritime. This port in Aqaba is generally used by cargo ships.¾

Local transport in Aqaba

Most places in Aqaba down town are within walking distance from the hotels. If you have to take a taxi anywhere, it is usually pretty cheap. Travelling from one side of town to the other should cost no more than 1.500 JD. Most dive centres are based out of town on the South Beach and organise transport from the hotels each morning. A new resort area, Tala Bay has recently opened in the South. Most of the hotels here are 5 stars and have regular shuttle buses in to the city. Taxis to Tala Bay from Aqaba costs approximately 10 JD. Always make sure that the taxi driver uses his meter.¾

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Aqaba, Jordan

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FAQs on Aqaba

What is the best time to visit Aqaba?

Best time to visit is ¾in September/October when the water is warmest and clearest, and the air temperature is a more comfortable 30-40C. Even in the highest season, the crowds here are still nowhere near the size as you would see in Egypt, so if you donêt like the crowds, Aqaba is always a great alternative to the usual Red Sea resort towns in Egypt.¾
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What is the local food in Aqaba?

Traditional Jordanian cooking is available all around town, everything from •fast foodê falafel and shawarmah to slow cooked lamb and rice dishes.Aqaba is also a fishing town so really good for fresh seafood. The traditional Jordanian dish is Mansaf _Lamb slow cooked in a yoghurt based sauce served with rice and pine nuts. Two more main dishes of Aqaba,Jordan are 'Maklouba' which is often prepared for celebrations and is made with meat, rice and vegetables and Freeke which is an ancient grain that is usually prepared with a meat such as lamb or chicken, nuts, vegetables or a yogurt based sauce.
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What is the best way to reach Aqaba?

Aqaba can be reached by flight,taxi and bus from Amman. Regular buses are available from Amman and flights are available to Amman from all over the world.¾
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What are the top hotels in Aqaba?

There are 607 in Aqaba which can be booked through Holidify. The most popular hotels in Aqaba are Villa Gardenya, GOLF2, Aquarelle, Villa Sigala, Fantastic sea view///Beautiful design apartment, Villa Daniela. You can see all the hotels in Aqaba here

What are the places near Aqaba?

The top places near to Aqaba are Petra which is 98 km from Aqaba, Amman which is located 282 km from Aqaba, Jerusalem which is located 249 km from Aqaba, Cairo which is located 368 km from Aqaba, Tel aviv which is located 284 km from Aqaba

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