15 Fabulous Things to do in Aqaba

you are looking for the best things to do in Aqaba then you are in the right place! Thanks to the ever-increasing low-cost flights to Aqaba International Airport on the Red Sea in Jordan, more and more visitors are arriving into Jordan via Aqaba to start (or base) their time in the country. Aqaba is the perfect base for a trip to Jordan because of its year-round warm climate, its access to Petra and Wadi Rum, Jordan’s desert, its underwater marine life just off short and its beach resort options.

The Best Things to do in Aqaba

Jordan - Red Sea - Diving Snorkeling

Diving in Aqaba

Diving in the Red Sea is one of the best places in the world for serious divers. If diving is your thing, ensure you spend some time snorkelling the reefs and sites in Aqaba. They are just off the shore of the Jordan beaches in Aqaba, many can be accessed from shore. Dive boats go out daily as well.

 

Snorkeling in Aqaba

If putting on the tank and diving is not your thing, there are plenty of opportunities to snorkel in Aqaba. It is one of the most popular things to do. A half day snorkel trip will take you out to the reefs and they often include lunch. 

 

Walking the City

The cool evenings and year round warm weather leads to plenty of locals and visitors out for evening walks. Whether it is around the shopping area, browsing the restaurants or enjoying time outside, walking the city is a popular activity in Aqaba, especially in the evening.

 

 

Berenice Beach

With few beachfront hotels, Berenice Beach offers day use of the beach and pools and a shuttle from Aqaba hotels to its location about 15 minutes out of town. With multiple pools, beach access, and lunch options, it gives visitors to Aqaba time to lounge by the pool, snorkel or dive or enjoy a private beach on the Red Sea. When someone asks what to do in Aqaba, this is always a top suggestion.

 

Aqaba - Tala Bay Movenpick Pool
IF YOU ARE STAYING IN TALA BAY (ABOUT 15 MINUTES FROM THE CITY CENTRE OF AQABA,) EXPECT BEACH VIEWS LIKE THIS ONE. THIS IS THE MOVENPICK TALA BAY WHICH OFFERS A PRIVATE BEACH AND PLENTY OF POOLS. YOU CAN ALSO COME AND PAY A DAY USE RATE TO ENJOY THE POOLS AND BEACH.

 

Visit the Local Beaches

If you want to know what the locals do in Aqaba, check out the public beaches. You will find picnickers, kids playing, women chatting and boat rides, parasaling and banana boat rides (From April to September). South Beach, which is a 10 minute drive from the city is a popular spot. If you do not have a car, you can wander right down to the beach in Aqaba as well. 

 

Shopping in Aqaba

There is a little bit of shopping in Aqaba but no huge malls like in Amman. There are outdoor shops near the beach, as well as the shopping area that sells a little bit of everything. Prices in Aqaba are a bit cheaper for some goods, as Aqaba has duty – free status. Be warned that there are strict limits on how much alcohol can be taken from Aqaba without paying duty. 

 

Souq by the Sea

On the weekends, there is a small souq with local artisans that you can browse. They also have a few snack vendors.

 

Eat and Drink

Aqaba has a different atmosphere than Amman. It is a vacation town, it is where Jordanians go for vacation and also where tourists find themselves. The restaurants have a less conservative atmosphere than most other towns in the Kingdom where you will see women openly smoking shisha on patios. In most of the rest of the country, you do not often see women smoking in public. 

Shisha is a popular evening activity, and there are plenty of restaurants of all kinds in Aqaba. Some of the best restaurants in Aqaba can be found here.  There are also plenty of places to get a drink in Aqaba.

Kofta with Tahina and Pita

Walk the Beach Promenade

One of the Aqaba attractions is the beach promenade. It will take you along the beach, past Sharif Hussein Bin Ali Mosque and offers plenty of people-watching opportunities. 

 

Glass bottom boat tours

If you want to get out on the water but are not interested in getting in the water to snorkel or dive, there are daily glass bottom boat tours that can give you a glimpse into the marine life of the Red Sea from above. 

 

Ayla Oasis

Ayla is one of the newer places to visit in Aqaba as it was just constructed in the last few years. It was a multi use construction project with residential properties, commercial establishments as well as hotels, entertainment and tourist attractions. The Hyatt Regency is in Ayla and so are plenty of watersports from wakeboarding to cable skiing. Ayla is also home to Jordan’s only Golf Course. 

B12 Beach Club is the entertainment hub of Ayla. With white sandy beaches, all day dining, and water sports, there is plenty to appease every visitor. While Ayla offers visitors entertainment and excitement, its modern vibe is quite different to that of Amman’s downtown. 

 

Enjoy Aqaba Nightlife

Something that you will not find much of in Petra is nightlife, so enjoy the evening atmosphere in Aqaba. Whether it is patio dining, wandering the outdoors, watching sports on an outdoor TV with locals, shopping or watching the sun set, getting out a night in Aqaba offers a different look to this seaside city. 

 

Sharif Hussein Bin Ali Mosque

Sharif Hussein Bin Ali Mosque is a beacon of Islamic architecture on Aqaba’s waterfront. It features the largest dome among Jordan’s mosques. The mosque was named after Hussein bin Ali who was the Sharif and Emir of Mecca from 1908 until 1917.  Al Sharif Hussein Bin Ali stood against the Ottoman Empire during the course of the First World War.

After dark, the pristine white structure is a beautiful sight to see as you stroll around Aqaba.

Source: https://stepintojordan.com/

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