The Aqaba Archaeological Museum is located in the Aqaba house of Sherif Hussein Bin Ali, the museum was opened to the public in 1990. Presently it houses an important collection from the Islamic site of Ayla, dated to the Rashidun, Umayyad, Abbasid and Fatimid periods, thus representing the Islamic periods from the mid-7th to the beginning of the 12th century AD.
Among the exhibits is a Kufic inscription of “Ayat Al-Kursi” from the Holy Qur’an, which surmounted the eastern (Egypt) gate of the city, and a hoard of gold Fatimid dinars minted at Sajilmasa in Morocco.
Admission is included in the Jordan Pass
Arab Revolt Plaza
Your tour of Aqaba’s historical sites culminates at the Great Arab Revolt Plaza. This huge square is a great space to relax and enjoy the views of the middle beach, and as such is considered an ideal escape for visitors. The importance of the Plaza lies in its historical value. It embraces the flag of the Great Arab Revolt, and the house of the Leader of the Arab Revolution, Al Hussein Bin Ali. It bears a deep significant national symbolism as the first Jordanian land set foot on by the armies of the revolution led by Al Sharif Hussein bin Ali. It is also the site where the first bullet of the Arab Revolt was shot.
Sharif Hussein bin Ali Mosque
The mosque was named after Hussein bin Ali who was the Sharif and Emir of Mecca from 1908 until 1917. Known as the initiator of the Arab Revolt, Al Sharif Hussein Bin Ali stood against the increasingly nationalistic Ottoman Empire during the course of the First World War.
With its pristine white structure, intricate glass windows and soaring minarets, Al Hussein Bin Ali mosque is a beacon of Islamic architecture and a moving sight among the hustle and bustle of city life. It also boasts the largest dome among Jordan’s’ mosques. It is considered a main mosque for Aqaba’s citizens. Visitors can quietly stroll around the elegant interior and watch the city’s daily life at its most tranquil and pious.
4th Century Roman Church
During the Byzantine period, a great deal of construction took place throughout Jordan. All of the major cities of the Roman era continued to flourish as the regional population grew. As Christianity expanded across this region in the fourth century, churches began to sprout up across Jordan.
From this growing Christian scene came one of the most exciting discoveries in recent times, where archaeologists in Aqaba have unearthed what they believe to be the world’s oldest church, from the late 3rd Century AD. It is slightly older than the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem and the Church of Nativity in Bethlehem, both of which date back to the 4th Century. It has since been back-filled with earth for protection.
Recreation & Adventure:
The city of Aqaba is overflowing with aquatic life. Take a journey of discovery through Aqaba’s Aquarium to reveal the hidden treasures of the Red Sea.
As part of the Marine Science Station Complex, the Aquarium offers a chance to dive without getting wet and watch the aquatic life inside the Red Sea!
Telephone: 00962 3 5144
Cedar Pride Dive Site
The cedar Pride was scuttled for divers on November 16th 1985. The ship now lies on her port side across two reefs; the soft coral growth on the masts is fantastic. Those with experience can explore its interior!
Contact information/ how to book: Contact a local licensed dive center to book this experience
Japanese Garden Dive Site
This dive site has amazing flora and fauna and all at shallow depths! It’s very popular with snorkelers and is known as one of the prettiest areas in Aqaba. It is a good dive for all, as it has Hawksbill Turtles, shoaling Barracuda, shoals of sergeant majors and fusiliers plus wonderful coral formations.
Contact a local licensed dive center to book this experience
C-130 Dive Site
The Marine Park’s latest attraction was scuttled on 16th of November 2017 and has already become the divers’ favorite. The aircraft’s final resting place lies close to several popular dive sites.
Ayla Golf Course & Academy
While in Aqaba, a trip to Jordan’s first 18-hole par-72 golf course is a must. Ranked among world’s top three eco-friendly golf courses, the Ayla Golf Course boasts a spectacular setting of the majestic mountains of Aqaba bay.
The Ayla Golf Course was designed by the legendary Greg Norman with a design philosophy to create a premier signature golf course that blends with their surrounding environment and enhances the properties’ natural features. With floodlit practicing facilities running completely on solar-power, the gold course accommodates golfers to practice long after sunset while enjoying the cool Aqaba evening breeze with friends.
Experience a new level of water sports thrills at Ayla B12 beach .Ayla 442m cable wake park skiing facility are for those who are looking for adventure and entertainment . If you are professional or amateur the thrill is granted though well deigned obstacles, ramps and sliders and wide open spaces for acrobatic water tricks.
There is no better place to soak up the lively atmosphere of the local ‘souk’ than in Aqaba. A stretch of charming, ramshackle shops and stalls snake through the old town here, offering everything a visitor could dream of, from buckets full of local herbs and spices, to colorful stained-glass lamps and hookah pipes, all sold at unbelievably low prices. Whether out shopping for vegetables or picking up some clothing bargains, visitors can experience the loud and rambunctious atmosphere of an authentic Arab market here and truly feel like they are part of Aqaba city life. Be sure to haggle with vendors as prices can be massively raised for tourists, with the local people never buying until they have at least slightly lowered the original price offered.
Established by Princess Basma Bint Talal this non-profit association aims to provide the women of Aqaba with the opportunity sell their artfully made handicrafts, and soul stirring food products to the visitors of Aqaba. Stop by and purchase authentic goodies and support the local community.
Where to eat:
• Aqaba Gateway (Rovers Return, Farroujna, Subway, etc.)
• Downtown (Ali Baba, etc.)
• Royal Yacht Club strip (Romero, Shuffle & Waffle, Firefly, etc.)
• Tala Bay (Suzana, De Soto, Al Rahmani)
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