Find your ideal cycling holiday
29th February 2020 - 14th March 2020 (15 days)
Jordan provides a taste of the Middle East and, being reasonably compact, provides a myriad of cultural and historical experiences. We start in Amman, the capital, from where the ancient Roman ruins of Jerash can be easily accessed, followed by an exploration of downtown Amman including its Roman Amphitheatre.
Our first days cycling takes us over Mount Nebo where Moses looked across the promised land and ends at the lowest point on earth, the Dead Sea. We then visit an ancient Christian pilgrim site at Mukawir, a Crusader castle at Kerak before finishing at Wadi Hasa. Continuing south we pass another crusader castle at Shobak and onto Little Petra where we stay for two nights in a Bedouin campsite in order to experience a glorious ride through Wadi Araba.
When you contemplate Jordan think Petra and we have a day to explore this ancient city. Cycle to Wadi Rum for two nights camping in the desert, with amazing night skies, followed by the opportunity to climb Um Ad Dami which at 1,800 metres is Jordan's highest peak. Our journey finishes at Aqaba on the Red Sea where a boat trip and snorkelling awaits us.
- Holiday Type Guided
- Tour Manager Neil Wheadon
- Grade Moderate
- Booking Status Fully Booked
- Accommodation Hotel, Guesthouse & Camping
- Board Basis Half Board
- Travel Arrangements Land Only
- Road / Off Road Road
- Holiday Style Moving-on
- Vehicle Support Full Vehicle Support
- Holiday Ref 03420
Saturday 29th February
Meet at King Hussein International Airport in Aqaba. Coach transfer to the hotel at Amman, departing at 1645 and taking approximately 4 hours. Stay 2 nights.
Sunday 1st March
In the morning we'll take the coach to Jerash, regarded as one of the most important and best preserved Roman cities in the Middle East. We then coach back to Amman to experience the old city, exploring the Citadel and the Roman Amphitheatre, two of the most popular archaeological sites. We walk through the old markets, viewing the Al-Husseini Mosque before stopping at a local restaurant to sample authentic falafel and hummus. Meals: B L
Monday 2nd March
We vehicle transfer to Um Al-Basateen where the cycling starts. We visit Mount Nebo, where Moses looked across at the Promised Land before he died. We then cycle across the Madaba Plains on backroads, passing farms, before rolling down to the lowest point on earth, the Dead Sea. Here we can spend time floating in the sea, enjoying a mud bath or even some spa treatment. Our hotel is on the shore of the Dead Sea. 51km. Stay 1 night. Meals: B L D
Tuesday 3rd March
We'll cycle from the lowest point on earth along the serpentine Panorama road (elevation gain 1,410m) and continue to Mukawir, the site of King Herod's fortress and John the Baptist's imprisonment. Although little is left of the fortress the views are magnificent. Transfer (30 mins max) to our homestay near Mukawir. 71km. Stay 1 night. Meals: B L D
Wednesday 4th March
Cycle along the King's Highway passing the Mujib Dam whilst rolling down one of the most scenic downhills in Jordan to Kerak. 78km. Stay 1 night. Meals: B L D
Thursday 5th March
We start the day with a visit to Kerak castle, an ancient Crusader castle, and explore the maze of stone-vaulted halls and passageways. The castle dominates the skyline and also provides an impressive insight into the architectural and military skills of the Crusaders. We then continue cycling along the King's Highway passing the Tanour Dam to Wadi Hasa for a night of wilderness camping. 39km. Stay 1 night. Meals: B L D
Friday 6th March
Starting with a climb from Wadi Hasa, we'll cycle through Tafila before descending to Dana, a 500 year old village situated on the edge of a natural gorge with stunning views, and the location of our overnight stay. 53km. Stay 1 night. Meals: B L D
Saturday 7th March
Today we cycle to Little Petra passing by Shobak Castle, the first of the series of Crusader castles built in Jordan, constructed by Baldwin I in 1115 and only surrendered in 1189 to the Great Salahdin, before rolling down the famous Hisha Road. After a visit to Little Petra we continue cycling to our nearby campsite hidden in the rocks and enjoy the hospitality of the Bedouins. 58km. Stay 2 nights. Meals: B L D
Sunday 8th March
Enjoy a stunning descent, dropping about 1,600 metres, on a winding country road/track through the mountains of Wadi Arabian to Wadi Araba in the Jordon Valley. We then have the option of a vehicle transfer or cycling back to Little Petra. 46km. Meals: B L
Monday 9th March
We take the coach to Petra, a masterpiece half as old as time, known as "the Red Rose City". We can marvel at the beauty of the City and explore its many caves and tombs. Walk through the Siq and be astounded at the magnificent Treasury, the entrance guarding this ancient Nabatean City which is now one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Time to explore the City further and perhaps visit Qasr Al-Bint or the Royal Tombs. Stay 1 night. Meals: B L D
Tuesday 10th March
After an active non-cycling day, we hit the road again and cycle towards Wadi Rum. There is a short vehicle transfer on reaching the Desert Highway before we continue cycling to our campsite at Wadi Rum. Enjoy the hospitality of the Bedouins and sleep under the stars. 100km. Stay 2 nights. Meals: B L D
Wednesday 11th March
At 0700, following breakfast, we'll travel by coach (roughly 1 hour) to the foot of Um Ad Dami. At more than 1,800 metres this is the highest peak in Jordan and from its summit it offers a whole new perspective of the desert. To the south we should see the border with Saudi Arabia, to the north Jebel Rum (next to Rum village). Climbing to the summit and back to the desert floor will take approximately three hours, depending on your ability. Coach back to the campsite at Wadi Rum to relax. A one hour camel trip at sunset is also included. Meals: B L D
Thursday 12th March
Our last cycling day. We cycle out of Wadi Rum through the mountains to the main North/South Desert Highway. After continuing along the highway we make our final descent to the Red Sea and our destination, Aqaba. 72km. Stay 2 nights. Meals: B L
Friday 13th March
We take a boat trip on the Red Sea, departing at 0900 and returning between 1400-1500, depending on the wind and tide, and visit several beautiful diving locations. A grilled lunch, salad, mineral water and tea is included. Between the diving, snorkelling and swimming, sunbathe and relax on the boat's sun deck. Once back at Aqaba, there will be free time to explore the markets downtown or visit one of the beach resorts for a dip in the Red Sea. Meals: B L
Saturday 14th March
After breakfast we take a short coach transfer departing at 0700 to King Hussein International Airport in Aqaba. Meals: B
Meals: B = Breakfast L = Lunch D = Dinner
Accommodation & Meals
8 nights 3-star hotel, 4 nights campsite, 1 night homestay and 1 night wilderness camping, 2 people sharing (double or twin room or two in a tent). All breakfasts, 13 lunches and 9 dinners are included. Vegetarian meals are available, but please indicate what you do/don’t eat on the Booking Form.
Full vehicle support is included. A large coach will transport people, luggage and packed bikes from and back to Aqaba airport at the times stated in the Itinerary. On other days there will be a 4x4 vehicle that can carry 3 people and 12 bikes, and a smaller coach that will transfer luggage and when necessary a couple of bikes as well as people. The smaller coach will also be used on non-cycling days.
Passports, Visa & Health
EU citizens must hold a passport that is valid for at least six months at the end of the tour. A visa will not be required. Holders of non-EU passports are advised to check whether or not they require a visa.
There are no compulsory vaccinations for foreign visitors although it is strongly recommended that you are vaccinated against Tetanus. You should contact your doctor or a foreign travel clinic at least three months prior to travel to obtain these vaccinations and the latest advice to travellers. Applications of insect repellent at times of greater risk, and good hygiene when eating, are effective ways of combatting diarrhoea and insect-borne diseases.
Our Booking Conditions stipulate that, for holidays outside the UK, travel Insurance is mandatory. Details of the level of cover needed and other conditions you should check are stated in the Booking Conditions. CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours Ltd cannot accept responsibility for any costs that may be incurred due to insufficient insurance cover.
The price of £2,400 is based on a minimum number of 8 people taking part in the holiday; please note Booking Conditions, clause 3. If there are insufficient bookings by 21st December 2019, we will contact you and return all monies paid, although in certain circumstances the holiday may still run at below minimum numbers but at the same price.
- 8 nights hotel, 4 nights campsite, 1 night homestay, 1 night wilderness camping, sharing room/tent
- 14 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 9 dinners
- Snacks and water on cycling days
- Full vehicle support
- Entrance fees to all attractions listed in the itinerary
- An English speaking guide and a cycling guide
- Tips for the driver, cycling guide and accommodation providers
- Group Visa
- CTC Cycling Holidays & Tours costs
Price Does Not Include
- Drinks with dinners
- Any other personal expenses
- Tips for the English speaking guide (suggest $5/day)
- Travel Insurance
- Single occupancy supplement (£280, subject to availability)
A deposit of £400 per person is payable upon booking, with the final balance of £2,000 per person to be paid ten weeks prior to departure, by 21st December 2019.
Should you be forced to cancel your booking for any reason you must notify us in writing. Cancellation charges are as follows:
Written notice received:
Before 21st December 2019
From 21st December 2019 through to departure
The Area Covered By The Holiday
Jordan is located in the Middle East, bordered by Israel, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Syria and for many years has been known as a safe destination for foreign travel. This tour takes place in Jordan's west, the country’s greenest and least arid area and which runs parallel to the border with Israel. It has been inhabited and fought over for many millennia and this has left a spectacular footprint of ancient attractions for us to enjoy as we travel from north to south. The Romans arrived in 63BC and built Jerash and an Amphitheatre in Amman which we visit at the start of the tour. Moses viewed the promised land from Mount Nebo, and the Crusaders built castles which we will visit along the way.
Jordan contains many Wadi's which translates as dry river valleys that can have water in them during heavy rains. These punctuate the scenery and we will be crossing some of these so there will be an element of ascent and descent on this tour. We stay the night in others, such as Wadi Rum. With its desert surroundings and with no lights to spoil the view, the night sky will be a spectacular sight.
In the 4th century the Nabataean's were thought to have established Petra as part of their trading network and we spend a day visiting the extraordinary result of their handiwork. We also visit two seas, the Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth at 431 metres below sea level whilst the Red Sea is a haven to marine life.
Rides & Rest Days
Most cycling days will start at around 0900 after breakfast and could take 4-8 hours depending on the number of stops and the terrain as much as the distances, which are mostly relatively modest. An English speaking guide will travel with the group as well as a cycling guide on cycling days. You are welcome to cycle at your own pace, and we will regroup at various points along the route. The roads will generally be well-maintained tarmac but as with anywhere in the world some may have deteriorated.
Accommodation & Meals
The hotel accommodation is in standard rooms. The campsites are run by the Bedouins and the purpose built tents contain proper beds, sheets and blankets. The homestay is like a guesthouse. When wilderness camping, bedding is supplied along with a camping mat. Packed lunches will be provided from the support vehicle, along with snacks and bottled water. Whilst bottled water is widely available, please consider using a commercial filtration system to reduce plastic consumption.
As no travel arrangements are included it is very important that you note that neither your Tour Manager nor CTC Holidays & Tours are responsible for you in any way until the appointed time at the designated meeting point. Should you fail to arrive at the appointed time for whatever reason, we will not be responsible for any additional expenses you may incur in order to meet up with the tour group. Before finalising travel arrangements to meet the tour, you should ensure that you have read and understood our booking conditions. Should this tour not attract sufficient bookings to reach the minimum operating size, we may cancel the tour at any time up to 10 weeks before departure. It is therefore recommended that you book fully flexible and refundable transport and accommodation or wait until you have been informed that this tour is going ahead, as in the event of the tour being cancelled, we will not be responsible for any losses incurred.
The maximum number of participants will be 13 excluding the Tour Manager(s).
Weather & Clothing
March has very agreeable weather conditions since it is not too hot and humid nor too cold and windy. The warmest temperature would be around 26°C or 78°F while the lowest peak would be 14°C or 57°F. Rain or thunder storms are possible. It is recommended that you take a fleece and long trousers for evenings and a waterproof cycling jacket and gloves in case of rain. Sunscreen is essential.
Although Jordan is more relaxed than many of its neighbours, it is still a muslim country so please dress with respect. For gentlemen, trousers are expected in towns such as Amman, whlist for both sexes any garment not covering the shoulders is seen as underwear. For ladies wear loose clothing which covers the arms, legs, chest and the nape of the neck. On non-cycling days some walking is necessary and appropriate footwear is recommended.
Cycles & Equipment
A touring cycle, hybrid or lightweight ATB is suitable for this tour. You should ensure your cycle is well maintained, paying particular attention to wheels, tyres and brakes. A low bottom gear (e.g. small chainring the same size or smaller than the largest cog on your rear wheel) is recommended. If you are unsure about gears, please discuss with the Tour Manager. Mudguards are optional but show courtesy to those who are following you in wet weather. Lights are not a legal requirement but you are advised to bring these. New tyres are recommended of at least 28mm diameter. Participants will be expected to carry each day sufficient spares and tools to deal with punctures and minor repairs.
You will not need to carry luggage, but a rack top pack or bar bag will be useful for carrying wet weather gear, spare clothing needed for the day, camera, snacks and your map. Helmets are your personal choice.
Maps & Guides
Reise Jordan Map, scale 1:400.000. ISBN: 978-3-8317-7308-4
Rough Guides consistently produce relevant guides. ISBN: 9781858287409
Route sheets, maps and gpx routes will also be supplied.
Travel Insurance & Advice
Before booking you should check the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, at www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice or on 0845 850 2829.
Money: the currency in Jordan is the Dinar (approximately 0.9 Dinar = £1).