Exploring the Hidden Gems: 10 Amazing Things to Do in Amman, Jordan

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Introduction: Discover the Vibrant Capital City of Jordan, Amman

Amman, the capital city of Jordan, is a treasure trove of history, culture, and culinary delights. Nestled between ancient ruins and modern delights, this city offers a diverse range of experiences for every traveler. Let’s explore the hidden gems and amazing things to do in Amman.

things to do in amman: aerial view of city buildings during daytime.

Top 10 Things To Do In Amman Jordan

Amman, the capital city of Jordan, boasts a rich history, vibrant culture, and mouthwatering cuisine that every traveler must experience. With a perfect blend of ancient and modern attractions, this city offers an array of diverse experiences to suit every taste. Join me as we uncover the hidden gems and amazing things to do in Amman.

1. Immerse Yourself in History at the Citadel

The Amman Citadel is a historical marvel, showcasing remnants of various civilizations, including Roman ruins and the iconic Temple of Hercules. Explore the rich heritage of Jordan while enjoying panoramic views of the city.

At the heart of Amman, the Citadel stands as a timeless testament to Jordan’s rich history and cultural heritage. Perched atop a hill, it offers not just a glimpse but a deep dive into the annals of civilizations that have shaped this land.

  • The Archeological Marvels: Wander among the ancient ruins, where remnants of the Roman, Byzantine, and Umayyad civilizations lie side by side. Marvel at the Temple of Hercules, an imposing structure that dates back to the Roman period. The Umayyad Palace Complex, with its grand courtyards and intricate mosaics, showcases the architectural prowess of the past.
  • The Jordan Archaeological Museum: Step inside the Jordan Archaeological Museum within the Citadel grounds. Here, artifacts spanning thousands of years are on display. From pottery to jewelry, each piece tells a story of the people who once called this land home.
  • Spectacular Views: Ascend the Citadel and be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views of Amman. The city stretches out beneath you, a vibrant tapestry of modernity juxtaposed against the ancient ruins. The view is particularly magical during sunset, painting the skies with hues of orange and pink.
  • The Umayyad Water Cistern: Venture underground to explore the Umayyad water cistern, an engineering marvel that supplied water to the ancient city. The cool, dimly lit chambers provide a stark contrast to the bustling city above, offering a serene retreat into history.
  • The Citadel’s Role in Modern Jordan: Learn about the Citadel’s significance in modern Jordanian history. It has witnessed the rise and fall of empires and stands as a symbol of resilience for the Jordanian people. Understanding its historical context adds depth to the experience.
  • Cultural Events and Performances: Depending on the time of your visit, you might be fortunate enough to catch cultural events or performances within the Citadel. From traditional music concerts to contemporary art exhibitions, these events bring the ancient grounds to life in a contemporary context.

Visiting the Citadel is not just a sightseeing experience; it’s a journey through time, an exploration of cultures, and an opportunity to connect with the enduring spirit of Jordan. As you stand amidst the ancient stones, you can almost hear the echoes of the past, making your visit a truly immersive historical adventure.

2. Stroll Through the Bustling Streets of Rainbow Street

Rainbow Street is a lively hub in Amman, dotted with charming cafes, restaurants, and boutique shops. Take a leisurely stroll, savor local delicacies, and indulge in a shopping spree for unique souvenirs.

Strolling through the bustling streets of Rainbow Street in Amman is an experience that engages all your senses. This vibrant thoroughfare, nestled in the heart of the city, offers a delightful mix of culture, cuisine, and commerce. Here’s what you can expect when you take a leisurely walk down Rainbow Street:

  • Cafes and Restaurants: Rainbow Street is renowned for its eclectic mix of cafes and restaurants. From cozy corner coffee shops to upscale eateries, you can find a diverse range of culinary delights. Whether you’re craving traditional Jordanian cuisine, international dishes, or trendy fusion foods, Rainbow Street has it all. Enjoy a cup of freshly brewed Arabic coffee or indulge in delectable pastries while people watch from a sidewalk café.
  • Shopping and Boutiques: The street is dotted with charming boutiques and shops selling everything from handmade crafts to fashionable clothing. You can find unique souvenirs, traditional Jordanian handicrafts, and stylish clothing items. Bargaining is a common practice in many shops, so don’t hesitate to negotiate for the best prices.
  • Art Galleries and Cultural Spaces: Rainbow Street is a hub for art enthusiasts. Explore contemporary art galleries showcasing the works of local and international artists. You might stumble upon exhibitions, poetry readings, or live art performances. The street’s creative energy is palpable and offers a unique insight into Amman’s thriving art scene.
  • Historical Landmarks: While strolling along Rainbow Street, you’ll encounter historical landmarks and charming architecture. Admire the well-preserved buildings, some of which date back to the Ottoman era. These structures add to the street’s unique ambiance, providing a picturesque backdrop for your leisurely walk.
  • Street Performers and Musicians: Be entertained by street performers and musicians showcasing their talents along the street. From traditional music to contemporary performances, these artists contribute to the lively atmosphere of Rainbow Street. Feel free to engage with them and become a part of the artistic experience.
  • Local Hangout Spot: Rainbow Street is not just a tourist destination; it’s also a favorite hangout spot for locals. As the sun sets, the street comes alive with the chatter of people enjoying the evening. Engage in conversations with friendly locals, gaining insights into Jordanian culture and traditions.

Strolling through the bustling streets of Rainbow Street is not just a walk; it’s an immersive cultural experience. It allows you to taste the flavors, hear the sounds, and feel the pulse of Amman. Whether you’re a food enthusiast, a shopaholic, an art lover, or simply someone who appreciates the charm of lively streets, Rainbow Street has something special to offer. It’s a must-visit destination for anyone exploring the vibrant city of Amman.

3. Explore the Ancient Roman Theater

Step back in time at the Roman Theater of Amman, where live performances and concerts bring history to life. Marvel at the well-preserved architecture and imagine the spectacles that once graced this ancient stage.

Exploring the Ancient Roman Theater in Amman is like stepping back in time to witness the grandeur of ancient civilizations. Here’s what you can expect when you visit this historical gem:

  • Architectural Marvel: The Roman Theater in Amman is a remarkable feat of ancient engineering. Carved into the hillside during the 2nd century, the theater once accommodated around 6,000 spectators. Marvel at the well-preserved semicircular structure and imagine the performances that took place here centuries ago.
  • Panoramic Views: Climb to the top tiers of the theater to enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding area. From this vantage point, you can see the modern cityscape juxtaposed against the ancient ruins, offering a unique blend of old and new Amman.
  • Historical Significance: Learn about the theater’s historical significance. It was a vital hub for cultural events and gatherings during the Roman period. Discover how this magnificent venue played a role in the daily lives of the ancient citizens, hosting everything from theatrical performances to political speeches.
  • Cultural Events and Performances: The Roman Theater is still used today for various cultural events. Depending on the time of your visit, you might be fortunate enough to catch a live performance, concert, or even a traditional play. Experiencing the acoustics of this ancient structure during a live performance is truly magical.
  • Jordan Museum of Popular Tradition: Adjacent to the Roman Theater, you’ll find the Jordan Museum of Popular Tradition. This museum offers a deeper insight into Jordan’s cultural heritage, displaying traditional clothing, artifacts, and tools used by Jordanian communities throughout history.
  • Nearby Historical Sites: Explore the area surrounding the theater, which is rich in historical sites. Visit the Odeon, a smaller Roman theater used for musical performances, and the Nymphaeum, a public fountain adorned with intricate carvings. These sites collectively paint a vivid picture of Amman’s ancient past.
  • Photography Opportunities: The Roman Theater provides excellent opportunities for photography enthusiasts. Capture the intricate details of the architecture, the interplay of light and shadow, and the emotions etched on the faces of the statues. It’s a paradise for anyone passionate about capturing historical beauty through their lens.
  • Guided Tours: Consider taking a guided tour of the Roman Theater. Knowledgeable guides can provide in-depth historical context, fascinating anecdotes, and stories about the performances that once graced this stage, enhancing your overall experience.

Visiting the Ancient Roman Theater in Amman is not just a sightseeing excursion; it’s a captivating journey through time. It allows you to connect with the past, appreciate ancient architecture, and understand the cultural significance of this magnificent venue. Don’t miss the opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich history that surrounds the Roman Theater, making your visit to Amman truly unforgettable.

4. Indulge Your Taste Buds at Souk Jara Market

Souk Jara Market is a vibrant bazaar where you can sample authentic Jordanian cuisine and shop for local crafts and products. Immerse yourself in the colors, flavors, and aromas of Jordan’s rich culinary heritage.

Indulging your taste buds at Souk Jara Market in Amman is a delightful culinary adventure that showcases the rich and diverse flavors of Jordanian cuisine. Here’s what you can expect when you visit this vibrant market:

  • Local Delicacies: Souk Jara is a haven for food enthusiasts, offering a plethora of Jordanian delicacies. From aromatic spices and herbs to freshly baked bread and pastries, the market tantalizes your senses with its array of flavors and aromas. Don’t miss the opportunity to sample traditional dishes like Mansaf (a Jordanian lamb dish), Falafel, and Kebabs prepared by skilled local chefs.
  • Street Food Delights: Explore the various food stalls and street vendors offering an assortment of street food delights. Savor piping hot falafels, crispy and golden on the outside, yet soft and flavorful on the inside. Enjoy shawarma wraps, a popular Middle Eastern dish made with tender, spiced meat wrapped in pita bread, and drizzled with tahini sauce.
  • Sweets and Desserts: Jordanians have a sweet tooth, and Souk Jara doesn’t disappoint when it comes to desserts. Treat yourself to Baklava, a heavenly pastry made of layers of filo dough, nuts, and honey. Sample Kunafa, a mouthwatering dessert made of thin noodle-like pastry soaked in syrup and often layered with cheese or cream.
  • Fresh Juices and Beverages: Beat the Amman heat with refreshing juices made from local fruits. Try a glass of freshly squeezed pomegranate juice, a specialty in Jordan. Alternatively, enjoy a cup of traditional Jordanian tea or Arabic coffee, often infused with spices like cardamom.
  • Local Products and Spices: In addition to ready-to-eat delights, Souk Jara offers an array of local products and spices. Purchase jars of Jordanian Za’atar (a spice blend) to take home, along with aromatic Jordanian olive oil and a variety of local nuts and dried fruits.
  • Cooking Demonstrations and Workshops: Some vendors at Souk Jara occasionally host cooking demonstrations and workshops. Participate in these sessions to learn the art of preparing authentic Jordanian dishes. Gain hands-on experience and culinary tips from local chefs, allowing you to recreate the flavors of Jordan in your kitchen.
  • Live Entertainment: Often, Souk Jara features live entertainment, such as traditional music performances and dance shows. Enjoy your delicious treats while immersing yourself in the lively atmosphere created by local artists and musicians.

Visiting Souk Jara Market is not just a gastronomic experience; it’s a cultural journey through Jordanian cuisine. The market’s vibrant atmosphere, coupled with the tantalizing aromas and flavors, provides a sensory feast for food lovers. Don’t miss the chance to explore this culinary paradise and discover the authentic tastes of Jordan in every bite.

5. Visit the Royal Automobile Museum for a Glimpse of Classic Cars Collection

Car enthusiasts will delight in the Royal Automobile Museum, home to a remarkable collection of classic cars. Explore the evolution of automobiles and learn about Jordan’s automotive history.

Visiting the Royal Automobile Museum in Amman promises a fascinating journey through automotive history, offering enthusiasts and curious visitors alike a glimpse into Jordan’s royal heritage and its connection with classic cars. Here’s what you can expect during your visit:

  • Royal Car Collection: The museum houses a remarkable collection of classic cars once owned by Jordan’s royal family. Admire the elegant designs, luxurious interiors, and meticulous craftsmanship of these vintage vehicles. Each car tells a unique story and provides a glimpse into the royal lifestyle and preferences of the bygone era.
  • Historical Significance: Learn about the historical significance of the cars on display. The museum provides detailed information about the origins of each vehicle, their unique features, and the events they were part of. Understand the role these cars played in the country’s history, from state visits to royal ceremonies.
  • Interactive Exhibits: The museum often features interactive exhibits, allowing visitors to engage with the displays on a deeper level. Interactive screens, audio guides, and multimedia presentations provide additional information about the cars, the technology behind them, and the historical context in which they were used.
  • Rare and Unique Cars: Marvel at the rare and unique cars in the collection. From vintage Rolls-Royces to classic Cadillacs, the museum showcases a diverse range of vehicles from different eras. Car enthusiasts will appreciate the opportunity to see models that are no longer in production, making this museum a haven for vintage car lovers.
  • Educational Programs: The museum often hosts educational programs, workshops, and lectures related to automotive history and technology. Check the museum’s schedule to see if any events align with your visit. These programs provide valuable insights into the world of classic cars and the skills involved in their preservation.
  • Thematic Exhibitions: The museum occasionally hosts thematic exhibitions focusing on specific aspects of automotive history. These exhibitions might showcase a particular brand, era, or type of vehicle, offering a deeper understanding of the evolution of automobiles over time.
  • Gift Shop and Memorabilia: Before you leave, don’t forget to visit the museum’s gift shop. Here, you can find automotive-themed souvenirs, books, and memorabilia to commemorate your visit. Whether you’re looking for model cars, posters, or clothing, the gift shop offers a variety of items for car enthusiasts.

Visiting the Royal Automobile Museum provides not only a glimpse into the world of classic cars but also an appreciation for the cultural and historical significance of these vehicles. It’s a must-visit destination for anyone interested in automotive history and an opportunity to immerse yourself in the elegance and charm of vintage automobiles.

6. Marvel at the Magnificent Architecture of King Abdullah Mosque

The King Abdullah Mosque, also known as the Blue Mosque, is a religious masterpiece with stunning architecture and intricate designs. Visitors are welcome to admire its beauty and learn about Islamic art and culture.

7. Take a Day Trip to Jerash – The Pompeii of the East

Just a short trip from Amman, Jerash is an archaeological wonder often referred to as the Pompeii of the East. Explore well-preserved ancient ruins, including theaters, temples, and colonnaded streets, offering a glimpse into Jordan’s glorious past.

Bonus Tips “Things to Do in Amman”:

8. Sample Authentic Jordanian Cuisine at Local Restaurants

Delight your taste buds with Jordanian cuisine. Don’t miss dishes like Mansaf (a traditional Jordanian dish), Falafel, and Baklava. Visit local restaurants to savor the authentic flavors of Jordan.

9. Enjoy a Relaxing Spa Day at One of Amman’s Luxury Hotels

Treat yourself to a day of pampering at one of Amman’s luxurious spas. Indulge in traditional treatments like massages and hammams, rejuvenating your body and soul.

10. Immerse Yourself in the Vibrant Nightlife of Amman

Experience the lively nightlife of Amman by visiting nightclubs, bars, and lounges. Enjoy live music, dance to local beats, and mingle with friendly locals, creating unforgettable memories.

Conclusion: Experience the Rich Culture and Exciting Attractions of Amman

Amman invites you to embark on a journey through time, savor delectable cuisine, and immerse yourself in its vibrant culture. With its hidden gems and amazing attractions, this city promises a memorable adventure for every traveler. Plan your visit and discover the enchanting allure of Amman, Jordan.

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