• Is Jordan Safe

Is Jordan Safe to Visit?

By |January 3rd, 2017|40 Comments

Is Jordan safe? The question of the hour and everyone is wondering it. Especially after the recent events involving the bombing of a Russian plane in Egypt, terrorist attacks in France and Turkey, among the notable presence of ISIL in this region. We’ve met people that would never dream of visiting the Middle East right now, no matter what it had to offer, and who think we are absolutely off our rockers for having done so.

Don’t get me wrong, despite the fact that we committed to visiting the area, we couldn’t help but let our minds wander to the current issues. I mean, we were in the Middle East for all the events I just mentioned above. I remember waking up in our hotel in Petra to the news of the Paris attack. It was heartbreaking and I would be lying if I said it didn’t make us nervous.

All of that said, we had a really amazing time in the part of the World and our interests are increasingly piqued from our small sample taste of it. We know a lot of you are wondering what it was like to travel in this part of the World and whether your plans should involve a visit in the future. So lets talk about it.

Plan your adventure to Jordan =====> 8 Day Jordan Explorer

Treasury Petra Is Jordan Safe

View of the Treasury at Petra from the Siq

Is Jordan Safe for Westerners?

I’ll start by telling you about a moment that David and I had shortly after we had arrived in Amman, Jordan. After checking into our hotel, we walked down the street to a Japanese restaurant for a scrumptious bowl of ramen. We walked through the door, were seated and handed menus.

After placing our order we both looked at each other and said, ‘I can’t believe we are in Jordan.’ Just bluntly to each other, then both looked out the window in amazement. If we didn’t have the plane tickets and passport stamps to prove we had just landed in Jordan, we could have snapped a photo and posted it online saying we had just arrived in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The crazy part? Everyone would have believed us.

We never felt unsafe or threatened during our time in Jordan and never got the impression that we were not welcome there. Jordan as a whole is working hard to put the positive image of their country forward, and it deserves to have tourism.

Our recommended travel guide: Lonely Planet Jordan

Musician Little Petra Is Jordan Safe

What are the Local People Like in Jordan?

Jordan is an incredibly progressive place and while they still hold onto their culture roots, they have moved forward with great care for the stability of their country and its people. We walked the streets of every city we visited at all hours of the day and night and were not hassled once. Many women in the bigger cities walked the streets without burkas, wearing trendy clothing. The men dressed sharply and treated the women they came in contact with respectfully.

Curious locals waved at us and started random conversations with us. Despite what people may think about it, we are not the kind of people that won’t tell people where we are from. When asked, we tell. I can’t tell you the amount of excitement that would come out of learning we were Americans and how much passion the local people put into telling us how great it was that we were there and how much they loved our country.

Plan your adventure to Jordan =====> 8 Day Jordan Explorer

Bedouin Boys Petra Is Jordan Safe

The mainstream news media does the World a great disservice with its sensationalism in the news headlines. The average American is terrified at the mere mention of the Middle East and can’t fathom why anyone would want to leave America.  It’s ridiculous if you want my honest opinion.

These media practices make people forget that there are people living in these countries, going about their lives just like you and me. They want the terrorism stopped just as much, if not more, than we do because unlike the few occurrences that we see happening to the western world, it is a nightmare that is effecting their quality of life. Think about that the next time you hear that the Middle East is not a safe place to visit.

Our recommended travel guide: Lonely Planet Jordan

Plan your adventure to Jordan =====> 8 Day Jordan Explorer

Jerash Is Jordan Safe

Ancient Roman city of Jerash

Is Jordan Safe to Travel Around Independently?

Absolutely. While traveling in a group is the most popular option, traveling independently in Jordan is easy and very safe. The infrastructure of Jordan is very modern, meaning they have paved roads, direct routes and even an expressway.

It is not a big country by any standard and you can travel from Amman to Aqaba in 4 hours. Buses connect the main cities but do not stop at the sights. So you will have to plan on arranging shuttles or tours from the cities you are staying in.

If you’re not up for going it alone, check out this great tour option that operates round trip from Amman, 8 Day Jordan Explorer.

Dead Sea Is Jordan Safe

Floating in the Dead Sea

Will I Be Harassed while Traveling in Jordan?

While I can’t guarantee that you won’t, I’ve been harassed in some cities in America, it never happened while we were in Jordan. The people were respectful of Western tourists and for the most part didn’t really pay attention to us. I never noticed men going out of their way to catcall the ladies or follow them down the street like I have seen in places like India and Morocco.

The key to visiting any country, not just in the Middle East, is to respect their culture. You have to remember that you are choosing to visit their country, you were not invited and you don’t have a right to just parade around like you do at home.

Jordan is a progressive country, but it is still a conservative place by Western standards. Do your part by researching the country and showing some respect during your time visiting the country. Just paying attention to those things will save you a lot of hassle during your travels.

Our recommended travel guide: Lonely Planet Jordan

Treasury Petra Is Jordan Safe

Fully clothed at Petra

Tips for Dressing Appropriately in Jordan

Being a conservative country, I think it goes without saying that you should leave your shorts and skimpy tops at home. Yes, it’s going to be hot out but it is imperative that you be respectful. I would say of all the countries in the Middle East, Jordan is the most accepting to the Western visitor. That said, following these simple tips will ensure you have a great time and feel comfortable during your trip.

Male travelers: Shorts seemed to be ok, same with T-shirts and lightweight button up shirts. Don’t wear tank tops. Sandals are ok. If you’re looking to be conservative wear long pants and long sleeve shirt. Many men were wearing jeans.

Female Travelers: Don’t wear tight fitting clothes, shorts or tank tops. The local women, while progressive, do not dress like this and neither should you. You don’t have to cover your head.

I wore a combination of loose fitting hippie pants, lightweight travel pants and lightweight travel capris. I wore fitted, but not tight, short sleeve tops and carried a scarf with me at all times. I also wore long sleeve button ups over tank tops. This wardrobe worked for me throughout our travels in the Middle East.

Plan your adventure to Jordan =====> 8 Day Jordan Explorer

Mt Nebo Is Jordan Safe

Is Jordan Safe Amid all the Stereotypes?

You should visit Jordan because it is awesome and has a lot to offer travelers. Jordan has history, culture, ruins and natural wonders jam packed into a small country with great infrastructure. The people are friendly, welcoming and eager to show you the best of their country.

The Kingdom of Jordan is working hard to maintain the stability of their country and keep it a safe place for tourists. It is very important to remember that the majority of the people in the part of the World are just people. Just people like you, working for a living, working so their kids can have a better life and working so they can live their dreams.

Plan your adventure to Jordan =====> 8 Day Jordan Explorer

Shubak Mountains Is Jordan Safe

Landscapes near Shubak Crusader Castle

Just so we are clear, I am not trying to sugarcoat the situation in the Middle East. What is going on over there is real and effects everyone in this World. I am not saying the Islamic State is not a real threat nor that the situation with Jordan’s neighbors should be ignored. However, I can tell you that Jordan is a safe place to travel to. There is security everywhere, they have a large, powerful, alert army and there have been no attacks in Jordan.

Don’t let the media storm that often surrounds this part of the World convince you that it is all bad and that the people despise Western people and our way of life. This is nothing further from the truth. Jordan is an exceptional example of a country promoting the good of an area and we can’t wait for a chance to return and dig a little deeper on our travel adventures. Besides, I think you have a better chance of being hit by a bus while walking across the street in your hometown than being the subject of any attacks while traveling in Jordan.

Official Information on visiting Jordan for US Citizens.

Some thoughts from a fellow traveler on how we can defeat ISIL.

2017 UPDATE

The situation in Jordan remains stable and tourism is seeing increases since we originally published this article. We are contacted on a regular basis about our travels in Jordan and have decided we will plan a return trip to this beautiful country in 2017. We have plans to go canyoning in Wadi Mujib, explore more of the Wadi Rum desert (where The Martian was filmed) and check one of the Top 100 Travel Adventures off our mission list by hiking the back door into Petra.


Resources for Planning Your Trip to Jordan

Recommended Guide Books For Jordan: Lonely Planet Jordan (Travel Guide)

Jordan Map: Jordan Travel Map

Planning a road trip around Jordan? Check out Auto Europe for competitive rates.

Search for Flights: Priceline or Skyscanner offers great deals to Jordan.

Find Accommodation in Jordan – Read reviews and check prices for hotels in Jordan at TripAdvisor or Booking.Com

Travel Insurance: WorldNomads or Allianz Travel Insurance, policies available for US and International travelers.

Plan your adventure to Jordan Today. Check out the great tours in Jordan by TourRadar, Gadventures and TourRadar All tours are ran by local tour companies. Take those tours your friends and family members will be jealous of.

More on the Middle East:

Petra by Nightdeadsea

Petra Visitor's Guide JordanIs Egypt Safe

Divergent Travelers Media

 

40 Comments

  1. Hazel September 24, 2017 at 4:48 PM - Reply

    We have just arrived in Amman at 9pm today, decided on car hire after reading multiple advices. We have driven in many countries and hardly met problems. My husband is a seasoned driver.

    Driving from airport to hotel was ok. But when we were on the way to the supermarket, a car drove into our lane from the front out of nowhere, very very close to us, on a totally empty street in Amman and forced us to move slightly to the right. We were already on the right and there were no other lanes on the right just some head-in parking lots, some empty some taken. When we were being pushed to the right and wondering why the driver drove so badly, another car magically close enough behind to get scratched on their front left bumper. The car that cut into our lane had sped off very quickly.

    We pulled up and 2 men appeared from the “victim” car (they only spoke Arabic apparently) blabbering about calling the Police (who they claim is off work) and another guy mysteriously appeared to “mitigate” in some simple English.

    They wanted ridiculous amount of money and we emptied our wallet to send them off. They took whatever we had, got into their car real quickly and drove off quickly too.

    We removed the huge car rental company sticker at the back of our car windscreen. We believe it was a planned scam (we had 3 very small scratches but theirs was very scratched) and wonder if there was any way we could have avoided it.

    • Lina Stock September 24, 2017 at 8:21 PM - Reply

      That sounds terrible! If it was me, I would have insisted that we call the police and would have also called the hotel to explain what had happened before even thinking about handing over money of any kind. It definitely sounds like a scam and I imagine had the police been called they would have disappeared. Jordanians hold tourism in a very high regard and this type of behavior isn’t tolerated but unfortunately, that kind of scam can happen anywhere. I hope you don’t let it ruin your time in Jordan, it’s a fantastic country with lots to offer.

  2. We Live by the Rules September 22, 2017 at 9:51 PM - Reply

    Jordan is really a historic place. I will come visit someday. Thanks for this!

  3. Catherine Whalen August 17, 2017 at 12:13 PM - Reply

    I cannot thank you enough for your post. Leaving for my 3rd trip to Israel next week, and wanted to add a day trip to Petra. My travelmates are terrified to leave Israel — fearful of the travel warnings, the terrorism, and the instability of the region. It is so hard to explain to people that have not been to the Middle East the exact notion that you articulated— that people just like you and I are living in these regions, making a living, raising families, and wishing the media would not overstate the conditions as much as we do.

    Your blog was balanced, fair minded, and so well written. I have forwarded to my travel partners as a reassurance.

    Thank you, thank you.

    • Lina Stock August 23, 2017 at 4:47 PM - Reply

      Fantastic to hear that you found our information useful! Jordan is a SPECTACULAR country and we were surprised by it every single day we spent there. You’ll LOVE Petra. Never seen anything quite like it. Media hype is a real thing and we need to make sure we maintain perspective about everything we see and hear. Be sure to check out our guide for visiting Petra to get the most out of your visit.:)

  4. Dani Rodriguez July 25, 2017 at 12:58 PM - Reply

    There are amazing flight deals to Amman right now and it has been a dream of mine to visit Jordan. I’m glad I read this blog but it’s still hard to not be worried considering the travel warning. I’m going to continue my research and keep the flight deal alerts coming. Thanks for this!

  5. Witha Crichton May 28, 2017 at 1:22 PM - Reply

    Hi,
    Thanks for sharing this. I am currently doing some research on Jordan because my daughter and son in law wants to go to Jordan to do missionary work. It scared me to death at first, but thanks to this blog I see that I was just being ignorrant as unfortunately so many people are.

    • Lina Stock June 4, 2017 at 7:04 PM - Reply

      Hi Witha, I am so glad you found us and that we were able to put Jordan into a healthy perspective for you. It is an amazing country with a lot to offer people who visit. They will have a fabulous time there and learn so much along the way. Cheers!

  6. Shine May 12, 2017 at 2:12 AM - Reply

    I’m glad that you enjoyed traveling to Jordan next time when you arrive here send an email and I will help you to know and visit all the nice and incredible spots in Jordan ??

    • Lina Stock May 22, 2017 at 11:18 PM - Reply

      Thank you! Yes, we loved Jordan and will definitely plan a return visit.

  7. Tom W March 28, 2017 at 5:43 PM - Reply

    Excellent article, thanks for posting. I also appreciate the 2017 update!
    I’m heading to Jordan the third week of April for 4 days and this sort of affirmation about the safety and friendliness of the people is exactly what I needed! (I’ve been getting nonstop questions from family about whether or not I have a deathwish!)

    • Lina March 29, 2017 at 10:18 AM - Reply

      You’re going to love Jordan! There are so many misconceptions about Jordan and the Middle East as a whole. Make sure you visit Petra. 🙂

  8. […] an unbelievable sight. Think Jordan is too risky a country to visit in 2017? Think again! Jordan is safe to visit and the people who live there will happily welcome you to their beautiful […]

  9. Stephen Clarkson December 18, 2016 at 4:06 PM - Reply

    Hi all. I have now lived and worked here for over three years I Lived in Amman for most of this time but have now moved to Aqaba. I can reiterate that Jordan is an amazing country with beautiful people to match. I have made many good friends here during my time. I have NEVER felt in danger, you just need to blend in and enjoy your stay. Like many have said you are a visitor so always keep that in mind. I love the place. Just one point about dress code, I have seen many local women wearing dresses and shorts. just dress respectfully. In the last six months or so there has been more trouble and today the 18th December 2016 there was the worst incident in the time I have been here. This was in Karak. Just about 10 KM of the main road near the bottom end of the Dead Sea. I still wouldn’t be put off by this. I just see it as there is trouble in all countries world wide.

    I hope this honest appraisal of Jordan helps. COME VISIT you won’t regret it.

    Just visit Jordan and enjoy it.

  10. Sally December 8, 2016 at 4:53 PM - Reply

    Is there a site that I could possibly find a travel buddy? As I am a single woman planning to travel January 2017?

  11. Dean Smith August 23, 2016 at 11:21 PM - Reply

    Thank you for posting this article! As an expat living in Jordan, I am happy whenever I see westerners have a great time. I will add that safety here is a very real concern, both for locals and tourists. We live in the worry everyday. I wouldn’t want anyone to get the wrong idea that it’s completely safe because it isn’t. That being said, most will be just fine visiting here, but please take precautions.

    • diverge2014 August 27, 2016 at 12:09 PM - Reply

      Thank you for your rational comment. We agree that there is risk in any destination that you visit, and especially when you visit a country with unstable neighbors. But it is not reason enough to boycott visiting a place that has a lot to offer. Many people make decisions based solely on the information they are spoon fed in media, without digging deeper into the issues or talking to people that have actually experienced it for themselves. There is a big difference in that information.

  12. Carol Zaid August 18, 2016 at 8:19 AM - Reply

    Hi, this is great to know and read. Thank you! We are a tour operator in Jordan and comments like this helps us a lot. Can we share some of this on our Facebook for clients to read? We are trying hard thru our FB to be as informative as we can especially on how safe Jordan is. How can we collaborate?

    • diverge2014 August 27, 2016 at 4:51 PM - Reply

      Hi Carol, Thank you for the comment. Please contact us via email to discuss collaboration. Lina

  13. Alan July 8, 2016 at 3:04 AM - Reply

    Very useful blog on visiting Jordan. Thanks and well done. We’re not shy of visiting most places though Jordan did cause us to have some reservations. On your recommendation we are off then… bike tour here we come. 🙂

    • Lina July 10, 2016 at 7:11 AM - Reply

      Jordan is an amazing country and very peaceful. They have some rowdy neighbors, but it is not affecting their country. Go and enjoy!

  14. james June 18, 2016 at 12:12 AM - Reply

    Nice read!
    Jordan looks really beautiful and I’d really like to visit at some point; it does seem like one of the safer options at present for exploring middle eastern lands and cultures.

    • Lina June 29, 2016 at 5:56 AM - Reply

      Yes, Jordan is incredibly safe to visit. You won’t meet nicer people either.

  15. Maria May 23, 2016 at 4:20 PM - Reply

    Thank u my dream is Petra for yearsss,u article is awesome can’t wait to be there this year.

  16. pat May 14, 2016 at 9:13 PM - Reply

    Why did you eat Chinese food while in Jordan?

    • Lina May 14, 2016 at 9:20 PM - Reply

      Because we had been traveling through Africa for 5 months before we arrived in Jordan and it sounded good! Hadn’t had Ramen in almost 8 months.

  17. Jordan March 1, 2016 at 3:53 AM - Reply

    Jordan is a heaven.

  18. Dorthe Conrad February 5, 2016 at 11:13 AM - Reply

    I Can only agree with all you have told! I have visited Jordan twice, and I will again! It is a very pleasent country, and it deserves to be visited.

  19. Tania Mukherjee February 3, 2016 at 2:34 AM - Reply

    Liked your positive outlook on middle-east!

  20. Nofal February 2, 2016 at 4:33 PM - Reply

    Thanks for this amazing article which described Jordan at it true form ! Am glad you enjoyed your time here and hope you visit us again 🙂

  21. harma February 2, 2016 at 10:49 AM - Reply

    love this article, I have lived three years in Jordan and this exactly matches my experiences. It is a different country, it is a different culture but with little alternations especially in the clothing part and a little respect for local culture it is a country very open to westerners. I cant’t think of any negative experience that had to with me being a blond European. I do remember some issues involving being a woman, but I later discovered it is something the local women deal with too. Besides that I always ALWAYS have felt safe in Jordan, everywhere any inch of the country. I have been everywhere on my own, without any trouble. But this works only with dressing up proper and with some respect for local culture. It is great country visit. Thanks for writing this blog.

    • Lina February 3, 2016 at 4:36 PM - Reply

      Thank you for adding your insight! These are the stories people need to hear. Cheers!

  22. Ramez February 1, 2016 at 5:20 PM - Reply

    Great read Lina! Glad you felt safe and enjoyed your time in Jordan. Jordan is indeed ‘the quiet house in a noisy neighborhood!’
    Hope you make it again!

    • Lina February 3, 2016 at 4:36 PM - Reply

      Welcome! You are right and so many people told us that same thing while we were there.

  23. Ahmad February 1, 2016 at 4:25 PM - Reply

    At first I would love to thank you about writing something we are looking to show it to the world as a Jordanians. Jordan is such a great place to visit whenever you get you time and your opportunity to make your dream come true to visit this country. and we are safe country to visit for all the people around the whole world, and the people of Jordan are friendly and respectful for the other. don’t let a little fear stop you to visit Jordan.
    Best wishes from Petra
    Archaeologist lives in Petra

  24. paul scanlon February 1, 2016 at 6:41 AM - Reply

    I had a great time my son has been in Aqaba since September 2015 & has made some good friends who I met, they arranged a trip to Petra and Wadi Rum on three occasions, actually New Years Eve was spent with the Bedouin and 80 other European travellers French, Spanish, Dutch, on the third trip to Wadi we spent several hours with one of the family owners of a camp, a really great insight into how stuff works, I regularly drink mint tea as a result of the visit, very refreshing, I even went for a shave and haircut a guy from Egypt, in the shop was a guy from Syria, the haircut and shave was 3 Jordanian Dinar, I gave him 10JD and asked him to treat the Syrian and keep the change, lol…..the guys took me shopping bought 2 coats and 2 pairs of shoes all for less than 50JD bargain…great place great people, fly into Aqaba airport and your in your hotel in 10 mins….

  25. Daniel January 31, 2016 at 8:23 AM - Reply

    Agreed, thanks for sharing! We need more people sharing the facts on the ground rather than fearing from their perception.

    Love hearing about your experience and being an American living in Jordan, we get to experience this on a daily basis.

    Hope to see you back!

    • diverge2014 January 31, 2016 at 2:40 PM - Reply

      Yes, there is a huge problem with people just assuming things this day in age. They watch the news, believe everything that is spoon fed to them and then rant an uneducated opinion about it. For people that are doing more research and are actually out exploring the World, we see things at face value. We loved Jordan, recommend it to fellow travelers and can’t wait to be back!

  26. evelyn alemamie January 31, 2016 at 6:09 AM - Reply

    Good article Lina, I lived in amman for nearly 6 years and loved every moment and really miss it, Last trip back, I had a meeting with the Minister for Tourism and said all of the same to him, they know they need to work on changing the media and how the middle east is shown etc. But a lot of it is ignorance on peoples part, not being willing to read and research for themselves. And not just taking what is printed in papers as the gospel! ..enjoyed your article

    • Lina January 31, 2016 at 4:50 PM - Reply

      Hi Evelyn, thanks for your comment. Yes, mainstream media is a real issue right now and people are just gullible. They believe whatever they are told without even doing more research! It’s frustrating. All we can do is share our positive experiences and hope people wise up a little. We loved Jordan and can’t wait to return to visit the places we missed and spend more time.

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