The Horse Carriages of Petra are an icon in their own right, the horse carriages are the main mode of transport from the entrance to Petra up to the Front of the Al Khazneh (the treasury buidling) moreso for the elderly and differently abled people visiting petra. the ride (one way) will cost JD 15 per person and only 2 persons are allowed inside as these carriages are small and they don't have shock absorbers so the ride is really bumpy! they are only allowed to and from the visitors entrance to the front of Al Khazneh and vice versa, unless you get a special disabled permit at the ticket booth for disabled persons (at at extra fee) so that you can use the carriage to tour around petra complex, beoyond the al khazneh.
Petra is the main highlight of Jordan and it their most famous tourist spot. There are many tours coming to and from amman to petra and most are via Big Tour Buses and some are on private tour vans and private tour cars. The Drive from your amman hotel to Petra takes 4 1/2 hours (225 kilometers or 140 miles), including the obligatory 30 minute stop at one of the souvenir shops cum refreshment areas of Al Karak, which is located halfway between Amman and Petra. The drive is smooth along the vast expanse of desert via the King's Highway and then to Wadi Musa, which is the entrance to Petra.
big bus day tours from amman to petra starts at JD 100, including entrance to Petra (exluding lunch) and private van tours at JD 190 per person.
I drove here from Amman! I drove along the King's Highway from Amman. I saw Madaba, Mt. Nebo, the Dead Sea and the Crusader Fort at Karak on the way here. All in 1 day. It was an historic trip. So, want a reliable rental car with air conditioning? Don’t want to spend half the holiday budget paying for it? Use a local company with reliable cars, a good sized network and a super friendly attitude. Dallah Rent-A-Car were exceedingly helpful and a lot cheaper than the large multinational companies. They are located at several airports. I rented from their desk at the Crowne Plaza (Amra) in Amman. You can also book in advance via the internet. Outside of Amman, you only need a small car as traffic is very light. In Amman, you need a tank. They drive a bit crazy inside the city!
On the way back from Petra I drove the Desert Highway. Quick, easy and very straight.
Of course we chose the easiest way for us which was by walking down the canyon and back. It is not any physical hard demanding, any normal person can do the trip on his own pace, just better to have comfortable shoes and remember to have enough water with you.
You can get to Petra by driving there, by bus or taxi. We used the tour bus that was waiting for us in the Jordanian side of the border and drove us on a smooth and comfy all the way to Petra and back.
The most of tourists usually get to Petra from Amman. We got to Petra from Eilat via Aqaba. That was a one-day excursion. Petra is located 135 km from Eilat and it took us about 3 hours to reach it. You can cross the border between Israel and Jordan quite free if your trip is short like our trip. The road between Aqaba and Petra is rather picturesque and I enjoyed the ride very much.
You can watch my 5 min 02 sec HD Video Jordan Aqaba-Petra part 3 out of my Youtube channel.
The Treasury is not the ancient city. At the end of the (inner) Siq there are tombs, of which the Treasury is one. You're then are about halfway the ancient city. You reach it through the outer Siq. The inner siq is a gap in a very big sandstone plateau. The plateau has broken and the gap has been polished by water. The outer siq is much wider, littered with tombs and a theatre. At the end it is joined by another valley - mark the very old tree that stands there - and there the ancient town begins.
There is more than one way to walk to the ancient city: just before entering the Siq you can go through an old tunnel - to divert the water in case of flash floods and store it in cisterns - and walk "around" the plateau. It ends in a stretch like the siq, shorter but very narrow. At the narrowest point there is the smallest tea house in the world: a guy serving tea with two seats only. You then walk into the afore mentioned other valley and can walk to the city. This hike is about 2 hours.
There are some interesting climbs too. For instance, you can climb to the high altar - roughly above the Treasury. It is a steep climb - at some places - but manageable. And you can climb - using an old ceremonial stair way to heaven - to a place on the plateau where you can look down on the Treasury. The climb is not difficult, but long. I've been told you can descend from there to the Siq, but I couldn't find the path and it was getting late, so we walked and climbed back.
Another interesting walk is a place called "small Petra", which is near the old Kings Highway. You can walk from the ancient city to small Petra, but will need a guide. There are more interesting walks and climbs.
One time we went with my mother, who is in a wheel chair. Visits to Petra are free for people in a wheel chair (!), so do not pay for the ticket. I had a guide (from Petra Pioneers) who negotiated a deal with the horse drivers to bring my mother all the way to the restaurant at the ancient city (this is beyond their concession, which is only to the treasury) AND come and take her back in the afternoon. (We paid only on being returned: my mother said that I had kept her money). The horse driver spoke English an also did some explanation.
I had problems getting a bus to go to Petra from Amman. According to the information fro the hotel where I stayed, there is only one Jett Bus, which leaves 06h00 from Amman. I did not reserve a seat, so I hired a car and driver.
On the way back, it was wasy to get a public bus from Petra to Amman. It costs 5 JD, compared to the 60JD for a car with driver. The bus station is easy to find, close to the mosque in Wadi Musa. They leave every hour (06h00 - 10h00) and leave when full.
I am sure you will be able to get a public bus to Petra from Amman.
Do note that these busses are 24-seaters, plays Arabic music all the way and there is not much space for luggage.
But, I enjoyed the trip with the public bus very much.
They do stop halfway, for tea etc (at a non-tourist shop! - much lower prices).
This is probably the most convenient way to move around the Petra site. Riding a donkey is easy and generally more safe then riding a camel (horses are not available inside Siq). A short ride for 1-2 km (like from Khazne - the Treasury - to the end of the crypts city) is a bargain of as few as five USD, If you are moving around with a local friend or a guide ask him/her to assist you.
You can take the JETT bus service from the car parking next to the Petra entrance. It leaves every day @ 5 p.m. and cost 5 JD.
You can also go to Petra bus station early in the morning and take bus to Amman whcih could be cheaper. It really depend on where you stay. If you are staying @ petra the an Jett will be easier but if you are staying @ wadi Mosa than the bus station is the easier option
Buses for Amman leave from the bus station described above.
The first bus leaves at about 6am, the second at about 7am and the third one at about 8am. After that they leave every two hours until 2pm which is the last one.
However what really happens is that there are four or five buses there at each time. When one of them is full it leaves, and the next in the waiting list takes its place. So you can have three or four buses leaving Petra at (officially) 7am for instance. This is why there are so many buses waiting in Amman to come back again.
The trip takes 3 hours and costs three and a half dinars. It will usually stop (but not always) at the half way point to allow anybody who wants to smoke to get out, and also of course to allow access to toilets. There's usually a small shop or cafe where you can get a drink, hot or cold.
If you want to leave for Amman after 2pm, you can try to get to Ma'an - there are more buses to there from Petra or you can take a taxi for 8JD. From Ma'an buses leave for Amman quite late, up to about 6pm
If you are not good on foot you should not really take the long walk all the way down to the Treasury. However one can hire carriages that transport one down as well as all the way up again. The road leads over cobble stones and at certain places is not paved. Be prepared for a bumpy ride, since most of the carriage drivers appear to be related to Michael Schumacher :-)
We drove from Aqaba on the main highway number 15 that leads to the Jordanian capital Amman. Turn left simply following the sign "Petra". If you should be driving from Amman you will hence turn right. The road is quiet good, however is used by many trucks since it is the connection from the capital to the only Jordanian port. Take caution particularly if you see Iraqi trucks!!
I just recently traveled Cairo to Petra via Nuweiba. It was painful. 8 hour bus ride from Cairo to Nuweiba (7 USD). An overnight stay. Next day, 4 hour "fast" boat ride to Aqaba (70 USD). Followed by 2 hour taxi ride to Petra (75 USD). A total of 152 USD and two days lost in transit.
I took a flight back. 212 USD, four hours (including the taxi ride to Amman) in transit.
Either way, Petra was worth the price and the time spent in transit.
Bus: East Delta. Departures to Nuweiba from Cairo at 10.00 and 20.00. Targoman Station. Times and number of departures vary day to day, be certain to check beforehand. There's no shortcut to this process, visit in person the station from which you intend to depart.
Fast Boat (about four hours faster then the Ferry Boat): Departure to Aqaba from Nuweiba at 14.00. Arrive 1.5 hours prior to departure. You'll need every minute. Passport check is a ridiculously tedious.
Taxi: Departure from Aqaba to Petra, taxi easily found at the arrival dock in Aqaba. However, you'll find a better deal in the city center.
Just in time for the Petra by candlelight tour and concert (Monday and Thursday evenings only).
After a six hour morning tour of Petra, we had time to enjoy Movenpick's lunch buffet and a quick shower.
Taxi: Departure from Petra to Amman, taxi easily procured by hotel concierge.
Plane: EgyptAir. We took the flight that departed to Cairo from Amman at 20.45. Times and number of departures vary day to day. If staying at a Movenpick, ask the concierge to arrange the flight as he or she is privy to special rates.
Horse and carriage are available from the gate to the Treasury only. You can also set up an appointment to have one pick you up at a certain time at the Treasury if you like. You might need it after walking all day. The hike back is an upgrade and can drain your last bit of energy.
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