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Old Apr 13, 12, 1:03 am   #1
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Jordan - 48 hours

I have the opportunity to stopover in Amman for a couple of days next month but am wondering if I'll really be able to see much in that short of a time. I know Petra is something like 4 to 5 hours away, so that probably won't fit. Any thoughts or recommendations on tour guides that would meet me at the airport and show me around for a couple of days?
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Old Apr 13, 12, 10:00 am   #2
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I'll be there for 72 hours this fall. Petra is absolutely on our list.

I think even for 48, it can be done without it feeling too insane. That's the sense I've gotten from this board and other travel boards. You can spend 1 day at Petra, or more, but lots of people spend only one day there.

From what I gather, you can rent a car and drive straight down there from AMM, stay in a hotel there, and be visiting the site very early AM.
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Old Apr 13, 12, 10:41 am   #3
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Originally Posted by pinniped View Post
I'll be there for 72 hours this fall. Petra is absolutely on our list.

I think even for 48, it can be done without it feeling too insane. That's the sense I've gotten from this board and other travel boards. You can spend 1 day at Petra, or more, but lots of people spend only one day there.

From what I gather, you can rent a car and drive straight down there from AMM, stay in a hotel there, and be visiting the site very early AM.
There's a company advertising on the internet called Petra Night Tours that seems to offer a good package, and it looks like Petra might be doable after all. I would arrange to get picked up at the airport the first day and do maybe a half day Amman tour, then start out early the next morning for the full day Petra tour. I did a similar package when I went to Cairo/Giza for 48 hours last year, so maybe this will work the same. On that visit they literally showed me around up until the minute they dropped me at the airport for the flight home. We'll see how it works out.
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Old Apr 14, 12, 9:12 am   #4
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Great...please post a trip report when you get back...I'd love to read about it.

Most of the Petra recommendations here discuss early morning - staying in Petra and being among the first to visit it at sunrise. But an evening/night tour could be interesting too...
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Old Apr 17, 12, 1:00 am   #5
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Saw Petra and floated in Dead Sea during our 24 hours transit. If we had another day, would spend more time at Dead Sea and add a pit stop at Baptism site.

Rent a car is the easiest way to go if you are not spending most of your time in downtown Amman. As US driver, Avis didn't require Int'l Driver Permit.
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Old Apr 17, 12, 1:08 am   #6
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Originally Posted by pinniped View Post
Great...please post a trip report when you get back...I'd love to read about it.

Most of the Petra recommendations here discuss early morning - staying in Petra and being among the first to visit it at sunrise. But an evening/night tour could be interesting too...
Will do. I got a quote from the company I mentioned and they'll meet me at the airport for an immediate Amman city tour the first day, and then I'll get up early for the drive and day trip to Petra the next day.
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Old Apr 17, 12, 7:53 am   #7
 
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Originally Posted by lancebanyon View Post
Will do. I got a quote from the company I mentioned and they'll meet me at the airport for an immediate Amman city tour the first day, and then I'll get up early for the drive and day trip to Petra the next day.
I think it's do-able. You may not have the luxury of being able to wander slowly through the Siq to get to the main Treasury @ Petra and you almost certainly won't have time to see anything other than the Treasury, but you'll see the main stuff.

On certain nights there are candlelight tours of Petra. Basically they light hundreds (thousands?) of candles to light the way towards the Treasury, then under the stars you sit and have a cup of tea. It's a very cool experience.

There's not much to see in AMM itself but if you have time, try to squeeze in the amphitheatre and the antiquities museum as well.

Have fun!
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Old Apr 18, 12, 4:11 am   #8
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Have fun!
Thanks - definitely looking forward to it!

By the way, I notice that my draft itinerary mentions prominently that tips are not included. Any idea on what is customary in Jordan for who gets a tip and how much? I presume the driver, tour guide, escort, etc, just not sure about the amounts, and if preferable in local currency or dollars/euros will do.
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Old Apr 19, 12, 10:03 pm   #9
 
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Originally Posted by lancebanyon View Post
Thanks - definitely looking forward to it!

By the way, I notice that my draft itinerary mentions prominently that tips are not included. Any idea on what is customary in Jordan for who gets a tip and how much? I presume the driver, tour guide, escort, etc, just not sure about the amounts, and if preferable in local currency or dollars/euros will do.
Tipping is not generally expected here although obviously it is appreciated. To put things in perspective, a school teacher for example makes about US$ 300 per month so if you are tipping drivers and guides US$ 5 to US$ 10 per day you would not be far wrong.

Obviously Petra is the big 'must see' but if you are anxious about the distance I would suggest Jerash.
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Old May 28, 12, 2:34 am   #10
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Originally Posted by pinniped View Post
Great...please post a trip report when you get back...I'd love to read about it.

Most of the Petra recommendations here discuss early morning - staying in Petra and being among the first to visit it at sunrise. But an evening/night tour could be interesting too...
Well, I returned from my trip. I'm not going to post an entire trip report, other than to say, without going into a lot of detail, that I would most definitely not recommend Petra Nights Tours/Day Tours to anyone else. If I was going again I would do what others have done - make arrangements through the concierge at my hotel. The Petra visitor center offers guided tours throughout the day, and I notice that those guides were way more passionate and energetic than my ancient guide who griped the whole time about how tedious it was for him. Lessons learned, I guess.

Petra was great but it was hot - three or four hours in the midday sun was enough for me. Definitely recommend starting way earlier in the day. By the time I got to the Monastery there was no way I was going to be able to climb up there. It was broiling and at the far end of the site.
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