Petra is one of the 7 wonders of the world. This is my 5th wonder to have visited. Petra is such an amazing place you really need to go and see Petra in person to appreciate this place.
Petra is known as the “Rose City” due to the color of the stones the city is carved out of. It was the Arab Nabatean capital. Petra dates back to around 300 B.C. It was an important trading route back then but due to trading route changes and an earthquake in 363 the city was pretty much abandoned. In the 7th century only the Bedouin lived here. In 2019 1 million people visited Petra.
Best time of year to go:
Is March thru May and September and November. We lucked out going in early February as the month before they had snow in Petra and one day it was raining so hard that they had to evacuate people due to flooding which was up to people’s knees. It was cold though around 55 degrees when we started out. It’s best to wear layers.
Things to know:
Wear comfortable shoes as there are many uneven surfaces.
Pack a lunch otherwise there is only 1 place to eat inside and it’s buffet style.
There are bathrooms everywhere.
There are vendors and men selling donkey and camel rides inside everywhere to the point it can get to be very annoying. Don’t say maybe or on the way back the vendors will hound you to death saying you promised them you would buy something. Some even say that you said on the way back even though we didn’t. This was the least enjoyable part of going there.
It is best to go early if you want to miss the crowds. We were there right around when it just opened and there was barely anyone there.
If you do buy something know that a lot of the stuff is made in China and barter as they price things high for Americans.
You can see everything in one day if you pace yourself. It’s better to take 2 days if you have the time but 1 day is still doable.
You can take a horse or cart from the entrance to the Siq. After that you can take a donkey or a camel. Only donkey’s go up to the Monastery. Otherwise you can walk everywhere.
First you make your way down to the Siq. The Siq which is a narrow canyon you go through. Going thru the Siq was just as beautiful coming in early in the morning as it was leaving except for more people in the evening.
At the end of the Siq is the Treasury which if you’re an Indiana Jones fan or have seen Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade you have seen this in the movie. Nothing compares to seeing it up close though. There is a path on the right side as you come in that goes up to a vantage point above looking down at the Treasury. It will cost 1 Jordanian dinar to access this. The Treasury is 40 meters high and consists of two floors with a width of 25.30 meters and a height of 39.1 meters. You can’t go inside though.
Next you’ll come to The Street of Facacades which is a row of carved Nabataeans tombs in the southern cliff face.
The road opens up to The Theater. It is carved into the side of the mountain at the foot of the High Place of Sacrifice, the Theater consists of three rows of seats separated by passageways. Seven stairways ascend the auditorium and it can accommodate 4000 spectators. The best view of this is up by the Urn Tomb which is a little further down and up on a hill
If you have the time go to the Monastery. Built in the early 2nd century and is one of the largest monuments in Petra. It is worth going up the 800 steps for the view. It’s winding steps and you can take a donkey up and back for $40. Some of the steps have been worn almost away and what is left is tiny spots to put your foot so be cautious when going up as the surface can be slippery.
It is one of the largest monuments in Petra, measuring 47m wide by 48.3m high
If you walk past the Monestay there is a view of the valley.
It took us from 6:30 am to 4:20pm to see almost everything.