Aqaba Holidays 2019 / 2020
The port city of Aqaba is located in Southern Jordan along the Gulf of Aqaba, which branches off of the Red Sea. Aqaba enjoys a hotel desert climate, with the summer months reaching highs of 40 degrees Celsius.
Aqaba is best-known for being Jordan’s top beach destination, hosting a range of water sport activities like scuba diving and windsurfing. Plus, there are a few historical sights to see too including Ayla and the Aqaba Fortress.
There’s plenty going on in Aqaba, but it’s well-suited to families and beach holidays in Jordan. Especially, for those who would love to explore the Red Sea and all it has to offer. Whether you’re looking for an all inclusive hotel, half board or full board, Aqaba has it all!
Things to do in Aqaba
Although Aqaba is well-known for its beaches, there are still plenty of other interesting sights to see and things to do. Whether it is religious sites, historical buildings or natural landscapes, Aqaba provides a fantastic base to explore southern Jordan.
- Aqaba Archaeological Museum – If you’d enjoy a history lesson about Aqaba, this is the place to go. The museum features a wide range of artefacts, some of which date back to a whopping 4,000 BC.
- Ayla – These city ruins highlight a significant history as Ayla is the first city to be founded outside the Arabian Peninsula in the 7th century.
- Aqaba Bird Observatory – Those who love bird watching will enjoy the 70+ species that flock here during the migration season. The greenery of wetlands in this area provide a diverse setting compared to the desert landscapes of Jordan.
- Wadi Rum – This desert land is also set in southern Jordan, making Aqaba the perfect place to start your trip here. Soak up the vibrant colours of the landscape whilst exploring major landmarks via foot, camel or 4x4.
- Aqaba Fortress – Otherwise known as Aqaba Castle, Mamluk Castle or Aqaba Fort. The fortress was built in the 12th century by Crusaders. However, once Ayla was recaptured, the fortress was subsequently destroyed and now the ruins remain.
Aqaba family holidays
Aqaba is the only coastal city in Jordan and as a result it is the perfect Jordanian destination for families. It enjoys a range of diverse landscapes, from the beautiful depths of the Red Sea to the red peaks of Wadi Rum. Many tourists find the Aqaba’s appeal mainly through its beaches, popular beach resorts and all inclusive hotels. Aqaba has clear water beaches which have outstanding visibility for families looking to get a bit a snorkelling done during their holiday.
Aside from beaches and water sports, there are plenty of other fun attractions in and around Aqaba. Head to Aqaba Aquarium to discover intriguing marine life which the little ones will surely enjoy. Or if they’re keen bird lovers, try the Aqaba Bird Observatory, where you can spot a variety of species (over 70 can be found here). On the other hand, Wadi Rum is also located in the south of Jordan. Consequently, Aqaba is the main gateway to the desert landscape. You can enjoy hikes around the desert along with a guide, or even spend the night in a traditional Bedouin camp.
Aqaba history and culture
Aqaba offers a couple of opportunities to discover the history and culture of Jordan. Sights like the Sharif Hussein Bin Ali Mosque highlight the fight against the Ottoman rule during the events of the First World War. As a result, the mosque stands as a significant symbol of strength and unity for the Arab people.
Plus, the Aqaba Archaeological Museum is also worth a visit to discover more about the area’s history. The museum was built in 1917 and it was originally purposed to be Sharif Hussein Bin Ali’s palace. However, now it holds a number of interesting artefacts and exhibitions which trace back the various periods of history in Aqaba. In addition, Aqaba is also home to the ancient Islamic town of Ayla. Dating back to 650 AD, Ayla was the very first Islamic city to be founded outside of the Arabian Peninsula. The remains highlight the Islamic architecture at that time before its destruction through a series of attacks and natural disasters.
Nightlife in Jordan is few and far between, but it depends on what kind of night you’re looking for. Aqaba nightlife isn’t all about partying the night away, but rather a chilled-out night out around town. There are bars within hotels and outside of them too, where you can spend the evening socialising with friends and loved ones.
- Souk by the Sea – This event happens every Friday night in Aqaba. Expect live performances, food stalls and souvenirs galore. The event is put together by the World Associated non-profit organisation in a bid to create equal opportunities for the Jordanian locals.
- Romero Restobar – There’s no better place to spend the evening in Aqaba than on the beach. Along the coast, you’ll find the Romero Restobar at The Royal Yacht Club. Enjoy great food and cocktails.
- Rovers Return – Coronation Street in Jordan? Located near the Red Sea, this pub runs with its English theme. It serves a typical pub menu and you can even get Guinness here.
There is a selection of public and private beaches to discover whilst in Aqaba. Especially if you’re looking for relaxation and to explore the depths of Jordan’s waters.
- South Beach – This public beach is free to enter and great for families thanks to its clear water. As a result, it’s perfect for snorkelling too, although it can get quite crowded at times.
- Berenice Beach – A private beach club, you can expect great standards and amenities. It’s a wonderful spot for snorkelling with coral and fish. There’s also a restaurant and towels are provided.
- Mövenpick Beach Club - Yet another private beach club, for a fee you’ll be able to enjoy all the benefits (unless you’re already a guest here of course!). Enjoy the shores of the Jordanian Red Sea as you take a dip.
- Coral Beach – This quiet and peaceful beach is a great choice for families. Especially because of its shallow waters. Plus, its name comes from the fact that there is a wide range of colourful coral to explore around here, making it popular with divers.
Aqaba couples holidays
Couples holidays are well-suited to Aqaba, simply because there is a variety of things to do. Those looking for a relaxing beach getaway will love their time here. Not only can you both relax on stretches of the Red Sea, but it is also the best place to try a variety of watersports. If you and your loved one have an interest in discovering the seas, Aqaba is a great place to do it. With many beaches in the area offering opportunities for snorkelling or diving, you can both enjoy all that the Red Sea has to offer.
If you’d love to visit the major sights of Jordan whilst you’re in Aqaba, Petra should be next on your list. Head to one of the new “Seven Wonders of the World” for an unforgettable experience. Roam between towering red cliffs and discover the amazing carved buildings in the Rose City. Or if you’d rather stay closer to Aqaba, opt for a trip to Wadi Rum where you can trek the sandy desert landscape.
Cuisine during Aqaba holidays are diversified due to its range of all inclusive resorts and hotels. In many of their restaurants, you’ll find anything from Italian food to Asian dishes served up. Appealing to the taste buds of a variety of travellers from across the globe. However, it is easy enough to find traditional Jordanian meals on offer too. Restaurants in Aqaba will also serve tasty falafel and shawarma, as well as meat and rice dishes too.
Top restaurants in Aqaba:
- Al Shami – Based in the Aqaba Old Town, Al Shami brings a traditional taste to your Aqaba holiday. Enjoy a range of Jordanian favourites which will surely be one of the highlights of your trip.
- Ali Baba – Also in the old city of Aqaba, here you can delve into tasty Mediterranean dishes. Many of the dishes at Ali Baba are fresh due to their daily catches from the port.
- Floka – If seafood is right up your street, Floka is the place to eat. Have the catch of the day right on your plate and experience the friendly service.
- Suzana – This restaurant is popular not just for its delicious food, but also its beautiful setting. Perfect for couples, enjoy your meal as you look out over Tala Bay.
- The Royal Yacht Club of Jordan Restaurant – This elegant restaurant is based within The Royal Yacht Club of Jordan. It serves a variety of cuisine from Italian to Asian and its outdoor area looks out over the stunning Red Sea.
People also ask
What is the hottest month in Aqaba?
July and August are the hottest months in Aqaba, hitting highs of 40°C.
What is Aqaba’s main features?
Aqaba is best-known for its Red Sea Beaches, beach resorts and watersports.
How far is Wadi Rum from Aqaba?
It takes 55 minutes to get to Wadi Rum from Aqaba.