About Jordan

 

Click here to View the Jordan Tourism Board Video.

Click here to View the Jordan Tourism Board Video 2015.

Jordan is a country of culture, beauty and surprising contrasts. It is an ancient land, yet a modern Kingdom, offering the discerning traveler fascinating diversity, safety and traditional hospitality. Few nations boast such close affinity to the great historical epochs of the world nor do many match its beautiful climate. Here the very destiny of mankind has been reshaped, time and centuries, resulting in layer after layer of unparalleled spectacles of nature and human achievements.

The journey can begin in Amman, the modern capital of Jordan previously known in history as Rabbath Ammon and in Graeco-Roman times as Philadelphia. The city is a busy administrative center with many fine hotels, restaurants, art galleries and museums. Amman is crowned by the Citadel, a hill with ruins of the Temple of Hercules, Umayyad Palace and a Byzantine church. At the foot of the Citadel lies the 6,000 seat Roman Theatre.

Only half an hour's drive north of Amman is the Graeco-Roman city of Jerash (Gerasa in ancient times), which boasts an unbroken chain of human occupation dating back more than 6,500 years. The site is now generally acknowledged to be one of the best preserved Roman provincial towns in the world compromising paved and colonnaded streets, soaring hilltop temples, spectacular theatres, spacious public squares, plazas, baths and fountains. The Jerash Festival held in July each year, transforms the ancient city into one of the world's liveliest and most spectacular cultural events.

In addition to Amman and Jerash, Gadara (now Umm Qays) and Pella (now Tabaqat Fahil) were once Decapolis cities and each has a unique appeal. Famous for the Biblical story of the Gadara Swine, Umm Qays was renowned in its time as a cultural centre. Perched on a splendid hill-top overlooking the Jordan Valley and Lake Tiberia, Umm Qays boasts impressive ancient remains, such as the stunning black basalt theatre, the basilica and the underground mausoleum.

Pella is exceptionally rich in antiquities. Besides the excavated ruins from the Graeco-Roman period, Pella offers visitors the opportunity to see the remains of Chalcolithic settlements from the 4th century BC.


A trip south of Amman along the 5,000 year-old King's Highway is one of the most memorable journeys in the Holy Land, passing through a string of ancient sites.

The first city along the way is Madaba (the city of Mosaics), which has been intermittently inhabited for nearly 3,500 years. The chief attraction in this city is a wonderful vivid 6th century Byzantine mosaic map of Jerusalem and the Holy Land. There are also literally hundreds of other mosaics scattered throughout Madaba's churches and homes. Mount Nebo, the memorial to Moses and the presumed site of the prophets death and burial. From the platform in front of the church one can enjoy a breath-taking view across the Jordan Valley and the Dead Sea.

One of the Seventh wonders of the world the ancient city of Petra is one of Jordan's national treasures and its best known tourist attraction. Located about three hours south of Amman, Petra is the Legacy of the Nabataens, an industrious Arab people who settled in south Jordan more than 2,000 years ago. Much of Petra's appeal comes from its spectacular setting deep inside a narrow desert gorge. From the main entrance the visitor travels on foot through the awesome "Siq", an immense crack in the sandstone that winds for one kilometer between overhanging cliffs.
Petra's most famous monument, the Treasury, appears dramatically at the end of the Siq and various walks and climbs reveal literally hundreds of buildings, facades, tombs, baths, funery halls, temples and a 3,000 seat theatre from the 1st century AD.

Jordan & SOFEX

Jordan is a Middle Eastern oasis of stability, security and median between regional states, with exceptionally friendly relationships with all of its neighbors and the wider international community. Due to its standing amongst the international community, SOFEX is able to attract participants from every corner of the globe to discuss the challenges and needs of modern-day armies, in addition to acting as a gateway to an international market that is estimated to make up 60% of global defense spending.

 

What more do I need to know about Jordan before I plan my trip?

Language:
Jordan’s official language is Arabic, however, many people do speak English so getting around won’t be difficult.

 

Religion:
Jordan is a Muslim Country with a large Christian community and minor Jewish community, Jordanians are known for their broad-mindedness to other religions which unifies the country 

 

Currency:
Jordanian Dinar is the local currency, which is about USD 1.4 / GBP .88 / Euro 1.25 keep in mind currency changes, it’s advisable to check international rates before you head to Amman.
Banknotes are JOD 50 / 20 / 10 / 5 and 1 with one Arabic side and the other English. For coins there’s Half-Dinar which is a metal seven sided coin with golden on the edges and a silver middle, Quarter-Dinar a golden smaller seven sided coin then there are the smaller silver coins being 10 piasters and 5 piasters.

 

Business Hours:
Friday and Saturday are the official weekend days in Jordan, except for the private sector and non-governmental entities, Jordan’s working week is Sunday until Thursday, working hours vary from one place to the other. If you’re planning your business trip make sure you scheduled your meetings beforehand.

 

Time Zone:
Time is GMT (+2 in winter and +3 in summer), or 7 hours ahead of US Eastern Standard Time. Summer time is observed from April through October.

 

 

Cultural Hints and Tips:

Jordan is a modern country, its people are relatively liberal, known to be hospitable and generous. While in Jordan there are some guidelines one has to follow to avoid falling into cultural embarrassment:

Dress Code:
The dress code is different depending on which area you’re at in Jordan, generally it’s advised to dress conservatively for both men and women avoiding shorts for men and short and/or revealing wear for women. If you’re on a business trip for both men and women a suit or smart-casual outfit would do just fine.

 

Getting Around:
Getting around in Amman is not that difficult if you know the address you’re heading to, if you’re taking a cab most drivers won’t have a problem speaking English so communication won’t be an obstacle on the contrary you might be in for a good conversation to kill time.
If you’re planning to drive in Jordan make sure you rent a GPS if the car you rent doesn’t already have an in-car navigation. Also make sure you have an international driving license, or check with your embassy if your driving license is valid for use in Jordan.

 

Climate and Geography:
Jordan has a combination of Mediterranean and arid desert climates, with Mediterranean climates prevailing in the north and west of the country, while the majority of the country is desert. Generally, the country has warm, dry summers and mild, wet winters, with annual average temperatures ranging from 12 to 25 C (54 to 77 F) and summertime highs reaching the 40s (105-115 F) in the desert regions. Rainfall averages vary from 50mm (1.97 inches) annually in the desert to as much as 800 mm (31.5 inches) in the northern hills, some of which falls as snow.