The Amman Queen Alia International Airport (AMM) is the largest airport in Jordan, and welcomes most of the long-haul international flights into this country. It is conveniently located 32km south of the city, and can be accessed via bus or taxi. Passengers choosing to hire a taxi into the city can expect a fare of up to 20JOD ($38).
The amenities at this airport are pretty comprehensive, with free WiFi access, several ATMs, currency exchange services, a few information desks, plus cafes, restaurants, and an extremely impressive duty-free section.
Etihad Airways, British Airways, Qantas, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Virgin Australia, Qatar Airways and Emirates all offer flights from Australia to Amman.
Why visit Amman?
Amman is the capital of Jordan, and fairly new to the world stage in comparison to some of its more ancient neighbouring cities. But don’t discount Amman as a mere stopover to Petra, for this city has lots to recommend it; from its modern architecture, to its slick shopping centres, and fascinating galleries and museums. Then beyond contemporary Amman, you will find much to discover when it comes to the older side of Jordanian culture, from the fantastic cuisine, to the city’s Old Town and surrounding ruins. Welcome to Amman.
Things to do in Amman
The Citadel is perhaps the most visited part of Amman. This attraction is made up of ancient ruins from both Roman and Byzantine sources, and sits just outside the city confines, on one of the seven hills of Amman. You can enjoy the history of this site, and the panoramic view of the city below. See the Temple of Hercules and the unusual Hand of Hercules at this site. There is also the nearby Jordan Archaeological Museum, where you can learn about the ruins of the Citadel.
There is also an impressive Roman Amphitheatre within Amman, and this site is one of the city’s most famous landmarks. Constructed as early as the 2nd century, this theatre could seat up to 6000 people, and would be the go-to place for orators or players to perform hundreds of years ago.
Then move from ancient Roman culture, to modern Middle Eastern culture by visiting the beautiful Al Husseini Mosque, rebuilt in the Ottoman style as late as 1924. This is a great place to get lost in, as you can amble along the labyrinthine alleyways that hide souks and marketplaces selling spices, silks, trinkets and antiques. This city is also well known for its Gold Market, and if you have money to spare, you can pick up beautiful and unique pieces of jewellery here.
Then there is Petra, the famed Lost City and UNESCO World Heritage site. Only a few hours from the capital, you can visit this incredible cultural icon that is considered to be one of the world’s most dramatic examples of tomb and temple architecture.
Best time to visit Amman
· Spring (March-May) and autumn (September-November) are the favoured periods to travel to Amman. The days here hit temperatures in the high 20s, but become much cooler at night.
· Summer is pretty stifling, and whilst the heat is dry and not humid, it can still soar to an uncomfortable 40°C during the day.
· Winters can be surprisingly cold, but it doesn’t tend to fall below 3°C, even on the coldest days. It is true that sometimes you can see highs of up to 20°C, but the takeaway should be that if you visit during this season, you must pack to cover all weather eventualities.
Arriving in Amman
· Generally if you fly from Australia you will make at least one stop in a Middle Eastern transit hub. These are typically in Doha (DOH), Dubai (DXB), or Abu Dhabi (AUH).
· Jordanian Dinar (JOD).
· Australians will need a visa to enter Jordan, but usually this can be obtained on arrival if you are only looking for a single-entry visa. If you need a double entry or multiple entry visa you will need to apply for this in advance. Go to the Jordan information page on the Australian Smart Traveller website for more information.
Please note that information is correct as of November 2016
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