Like pretty much everyone else in Wadi Musa, I was there for one reason: to see Petra. One of the Seven wonders of the world, Petra is Jordan’s most popular site by far. Hoping to avoid the crowds, I set off early – slightly delayed by finding the hotel locked and having to hunt down a member of staff.

I reached the ticket office shortly after 6 AM and bought my ticket (50 JD – it’s cheaper to buy the Jordan Pass before arriving which includes visa fees and various park fees).

It was just getting light as I made my way in to the ancient city, and there were very few people around – mostly guides and people heading in to set up gift stalls.

The Obelisk Tomb, on the approach to Petra
The Siq, the narrow gorge that forms the entrance to Petra
The Treasury
I got here before most of the vendors, so there were many unattended tables covered in souvenirs that local Bedouin would later be trying to sell
I took a trail up to the “High Point of Sacrifice.” This photo (and next) are looking back down from the trail
The view from the High Point of Sacrifice (with someone getting in the way of the camera, sorry about that)
The Tomb of the Roman Soldier
An unattended camel
Here the caves are being used as the ancient Nabataeans intended: as a garage.
Setting off on the trail to the Monastery.
Miriam, Selma and Kaseema invited me to join them for tea and a biscuit. These, they insist are free – but they then ask if you’d like to buy from their souvenirs. That seems to be the pattern on this trail. I declined to buy a scarf but offered them 1JD for a photo.
Following Bedouin up the trail
The Monastery. I then followed trails to a couple nice viewpoints of it (below).
The Great Temple. After visiting the Monastery I made my way back to the “main” area
The main road
The Street of Facades. The next few pictures are close-ups of these buildings.
The theatre
The Necropolis
Back at the Treasury. It was about 12 o clock here and was starting to get busy. I was very glad I visited from 6-12, rather than the afternoon as most people seem to. It wasn’t as hot and I mostly had the place to myself.

After about 7 hours and over 20 kilometres walked, I returned to the hotel. I took a break then set off cycling, climbing up and getting a great view of the surrounding mountains.

Leaving the highway behind, I set off onto smaller roads and tracks, roughly following the Jordan Bikepacking Route from

That’s the road!

In the evening I wandered off into the desert and set up camp in the sand.

Sept 27: 50 km

2 thoughts on “Petra

  1. Amazing pictures of Petra – I’d love to visit before I’m too old.
    Do you have memories of being in the Sinai desert with us when you were a small boy?


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