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Day planning Jordan trip (Jordan)

In need after a short break after having to cancel my GR20 hiking plans in Corsica, France, I decided upon visiting Jordan. My trip included visits to Amman, Petra, Wadi Rum, Dana, Aqaba and -of course- my multi-day solo hike of the southern part of the Jordan Trail. So here’s my day planning Jordan.

For readability purposes, I chopped the post up in different parts:

An overview of my trip planning to Jordan in November 2018:

Rough day planning Jordan Trip

  • 5 november: Travel to Amman, stay in Amman.
  • 6 november: Spend some time in Amman, get some last groceries for the trail.
  • 7 november: Day 1 of hiking (also see the detailed planning).
  • 8 november: Day 2 of hiking.
  • 9 november: Day 3 of hiking.
  • 10 november: Day 4 of hiking.
  • 11 november: Day 5 of hiking.
  • 12 november: Day 6 of hiking – arrive and sleep Aqaba or still on the trail.
  • 13 november: Chilling at the resort in Aqaba.
  • 14 november: Chilling at the resort in Aqaba, travel back to Amman.
  • 15 november: Travel back home.

Detailed day planning Jordan trip and Jordan Trail

5 November (Monday) Day planning Jordan

  • 12h15-20h30 travel from Brussels to Amman via Istanbul with Turkish Airlines.
  • Get local SIM card at the Orange stand at the airport (thanks Richard G for the tip!)
  • Sleep in the Intercontinental hotel in Amman.

6 November (Tuesday) Day planning Jordan

  • Spend some time in Amman, visit the key highlights (Roman Amphitheatre, The Citadel, Rainbow Street, …).
  • Get last groceries (water, fruit, gas canister) to complete my packing list for the Jordan Trail.
  • Arrange permit for Dana Biosphere Reserve via hotel.
  • Arrange transfer of luggage to Intercontinental hotel in Aqaba.
  • Get some cash money for the trail.
  • Buying a gas canister at ACE in Mecca Mall.
  • Quick visit to Jordan Trail Organisation HQ.
  • Sleep in the Intercontinental hotel in Amman.

7 November (Wednesday) Day planning Jordan

Civil twilight: 5h32 – 17h07 (source) – This will give me a rough estimate when I can go hiking. Civil twilight is the limit at which twilight illumination is sufficient, under good weather conditions, for terrestrial objects to be clearly distinguished.

  • 05h30-08h00 Travel from Amman to start of my part of the trail in Dana.
  • Day 1 of hiking: Dana to Qutla Ruins (43,5 km) The first and probably most a-typical day. A large descent (1250 meters to 250 meters over the course of 20km), before a large ascent (250 meters back to 1250 meters over the next 20 kilometers, with a nasty climb around 32km).
    • 🚰 12.5km Gseib spring for water refill, a first glimpse on what to expect from the springs on the trail (hoping they are not dried out after summer or too contaminated).
    • 🚰 13.7km Feynan Ecolodge for water refill.
    • 15.6km Feynan Ruins.
    • 🏕️ 23.5km Wadi al-Malaqa Campsite, a first glimpse on what to expect from campsites on the trail (knowing that most of the spots I will be camping at are wild camping spots).
    • 🏕️ 27.9km Jabal Feid Wild Camp spot, a first glimpse on what to expect from wild camp spots on the trail.
    • 🚰 🚿 35.2km Unnamed pools and waterfall, a first glimpse on what to expect from my washing facilities along the trail. With limited water and lodges along the trail, this probably will be the way to get some well-deserved cleaning after long days of hiking.
    • ☠️ 35.2km Flash flood danger
    • 🚰 35.7km Unnamed spring (!).
    • 🏕️ 43.5 km Qutla Ruins Wild Camp spot.

8 November (Thursday) Day planning Jordan

Petra in Jordan - Photo by Anna Everywhere
The Treasury in Petra in Jordan – Photo by Anna Everywhere

Civil twilight: 5h33 – 17h06

  • Day 2 of hiking: Qutla Ruins to Gaa’ Mriebed (51,3 km) This promises to be a super magical day as it will take me through the ruins of Petra. I have been obsessed by these since I was a child, so can not wait to see them.
    • 🏕️ 12.6km Qbour al-Wahdat Wild Camp spot
    • 🏕️14.7 Rock Camp
    • ☠️ 14.7km Exposed trail
    • 16.5km Little Petra with Neolithic village
    • 21.2km Steps to Petra begin
    • 🚰  23.5km Petra Monastery with an opportunity to buy water
    • 26.9km Petra The Treasury
    • 🥫29.1km Wadi Musa village, with the opportunity to buy water and groceries. Apparently, Al Arabi comes highly recommended (thanks, Leif).
    • ☠️ 38.6km Slippery trail
    • 40.8km Sabre Amphitheatre
    • ☠️ 43.6km Exposed trail
    • 🚰 🚿45.7km Pools, hopefully, usable for a well-deserved freshening up.
    • 🏕️ 51.3 km Gaa’ Mriebed Wild Camp spot.

9 November (Friday) Day planning Jordan

Civil twilight: 5h33 – 17h06

  • Day 3 of hiking: Gaa’ Mriebed to Ain Aheimar (52,1 km) Not really sure what to expect here. Two sharp climbs and descents and above all – very little refill and resupply spots along the trail. With over 90 kilometers already covered, I guess this will be one of the toughest days.
    • 🚰  6.2km Square Cement Cistern – I have seen it running out of water after summer.
    • 🏕️ 14.3km Carved Boulder Wild Camp spot.
    • 🏕️ 26.6km Wadi Gseib Wild Camp spot.
    • 28.0km Colored sandstone canyons.
    • 30.6km Chalky white sandstone.
    • 36.1km Sand dunes.
    • 🏕️ 36.9km Huge boulder Wild Camp spot.
    • 🏕️ 40.7km Wild Camp spot.
    • 🏕️ 42.2km Wadi Aheimar Wild Camp spot.
    • ☠️ 42.2km Flash Flood risk.
    • 🏕️🚰  52.1km Wild Camp spot with water.

10 November (Saturday) Day planning Jordan

Civil twilight: 5h34 – 17h05

  • Day 4 of hiking: Ain Aheimar to Shakriya (50,4 km). After a 500m ascent, this should be a pretty straightforward day.
    • ☠️ 5.3km Flash Flood risk
    • 9,0km Stone fence
    • 15.4km Humeima
    • 🥫24.2km New Humeima (approximately 1.5km off trail), with the opportunity to buy water and groceries (!).
    • 🏕️ 26.4 Wild Camp spot.
    • 🏕️🚰 34.4km Jabal Kharazeh Wild Camp (with nearby well, although I am really not certain I can trust it is still active after summer).
    • 🏕️ 42.8km Wild Camp spot
    • 🏕️🥫50.4km Shakriya with nearby Sun Camp camping spot and a store to resupply. I booked the Bait Ali Lodge, Rum (including breakfast and dinner) near Shakriya for now, just as a safeguard.

11 November (Sunday) Day planning Jordan

Civil twilight: 5h35 – 17h04

  • Day 5 of hiking: Shakriya to Final Camp (58,6 km). A super tough day. Not so much because of the trail, but more because of the distance and the fact that I already did 4 heavy days on the trail.
    • 🥫4.8km Wadi Rum visitors center with a store.
    • 🥫 12.1km Rum Village with a store, restaurant and opportunity to resupply on food and water (!).
    • 🚰 13.8km Lawrence Spring.
    • 🚰 21.1 Qattar Spring, near the trail.
    • 30.4km Sand dunes.
    • 🏕️ 32.7km Wadi Waraqa Wild Campsite. This is a key point. I either camp here for the night or push on for the next 26km.
    • 🚰 34.8 Well (but probably run dry after summer)
    • 🥫45.6km Titen with a store (!).
    • 52.1 Pass
    • 🏕️ 58.6 Final camp (yes, that’s the actual name of the camp) Wild Camp spot.
  • Day 5 of hiking alternative: Shakriya to Wadi Waraq (32,7 km)
    In case the trail proves to be too tough, I can cut this stage short by stopping at Wadi Waraq and proceed the next day.

12 November (Monday) Day planning Jordan

Civil twilight: 5h36 – 17h04

Intercontinental Aqaba - Soooo looking forward to this after my hike
Intercontinental Aqaba – Soooo looking forward to this after my hike

I built in some flexibility at the end of my hike. I had booked two refundable nights at the Intercontinental hotel/resort in Aqaba, so that I could either arrive early or -when needed- could spend another 2-3 extra days on the trail. So 12, 13 and 14 November are either my last day of hiking or are spent at the resort.

  • Day 6 of hiking: Final Camp to Red Sea (19,6 km). Hopefully the last day. 20km downhill to the Red Sea.
  • Travel from end of trail to Intercontinental Aqaba hotel resort.
  • Ultimate chillings at the resort.
  • Sleep in the Intercontinental hotel in Aqaba.

13 November (Tuesday) Day planning Jordan

14 November (Wednesday) Day planning Jordan

  • Ultimate chillings at the resort.
  • 23h35-00h25 Travel from Aqaba to Amman.

15 November (Thursday) Day planning Jordan

  • 05h45 – 12h00 Travel from Amman to Brussels via Istanbul with Turkish Airlines.

Water day planning Jordan Trail

Because water is so scarce along the Jordan Trail, I decided to make a dedicated water planning beforehand. I brought gear to store 8,5l of water: 2*3l Camelbak bladders, 2*0,5l Camelbak water flasks, 2*0,75l Camelbak water bottles and additionally a 0,75l thermos flask for boiled water so I don’t waste any water and can have a warm meal with boiling water once.

7 November Water Day planning Jordan

  • Hike: 43,5km to Qutla Ruins Wild Camp spot.
  • Start of day: 8,5l
  • End of day: 4,5l
  • Water facilities at the camp spot: Some conflicting stories here, so not counting on it.
  • Water action: Ideally, I get some water in the unnamed spring at 35.7km to cook.
  • Washing:
  • Emergency: If I run out of water too fast, I can refill at Feynan Ecolodge, and two springs after 35km of trail.

8 November Water Day planning Jordan

Today it’s crucial to end with as much water at the end of the day as possible as the next day will leave me hardly any resupply options.

  • Hike: 51,3km to Gaa’ Mriebed.
  • Start of day: 4,5l
  • End of day: 7,5l
  • Water facilities at the camp spot: Not counting on it.
  • Water action: Full resupply at Wadi Musa, ideally maybe even an extra bottle of water.
  • Washing: Pool wash at 45.7km.
  • Emergency: If I run out of water too fast, I can refill at Little Petra, Petra, Wadi Musa and the pool at 45.7km.

9 November Water Day planning Jordan

With practically no water resupply opportunities today, I need to go easy on the water.

  • Hike: 52,1km to Ain Aheimar.
  • Start of day: 7,5l
  • End of day: 3,0l
  • Water facilities at the camp spot: There should be water at the camp spot, but I don’t want to count on it too much.
  • Water action: Don’t waste any water.
  • Washing: –
  • Emergency: Screwed.

10 November Water Day planning Jordan

  • Hike: 50,4km to Shakriya.
  • Start of day: 3,0l
  • End of day: 8,5l
  • Water facilities at the camp spot: There should be water at the camp spot. I might even spend the night in Bait Ali Lodge, which would allow me to fully restock.
  • Water action: Full resupply in New Humeima (24.2km) and Bait Ali Lodge (50,4km).
  • Washing: Bait Ali Lodge.
  • Emergency: New Humeima, Jabal Kharazeh Wild Camp.

11 November Water Day planning Jordan

  • Hike: 58,6km to Final Camp.
  • Start of day: 8,5l
  • End of day: 5,5l
  • Water facilities at the camp spot: Nope.
  • Water action: Full resupply in Rum Village (12,1km).
  • Washing: Bait Ali Lodge.
  • Emergency: Springs and wells at 13.8, 21.1 and 34.8km (although the latter seems to run dry after summer). I heard conflicting stories about the village of Titen, so not counting on it.

12 November Water Day planning Jordan

  • Hike: 19,6km to Red Sea.
  • Start of day: 5,5l
  • End of day: 1,5l
  • Water facilities at the camp spot: Plenty. And cocktails. And beers.
  • Water action: –
  • Washing: A proper shower! And a bath! And a pool!
  • Emergency: City starts at approx. 15km in. Should work out.

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