A Guide to the City of Amman, Jordan

Amman is the vibrant capital of Jordan where ancient history meets modern flair. Whether you’re drawn to historical sites, culinary delights, or artistic experiences, Amman offers a diverse array of attractions to captivate every traveler. Let’s explore the top activities, dining spots, and essential local cuisines that promise to enrich your visit to this culturally rich city.

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Things to Do in Amman

1. Explore the Citadel

Start your journey at the Amman Citadel, perched high on Jabal al-Qal’a. This historical gem offers stunning views of the city and a fascinating peek into Amman’s ancient past. Don’t miss the Temple of Hercules and the Ummayad Palace, perfect spots for those Instagram-worthy shots.

2. Wander Through the Roman Theatre

Step back in time at the Roman Theatre, a 6,000-seat amphitheater that dates back to the 2nd century AD. It’s not just a relic; it’s still used for performances today! If you’re lucky, you might catch a local music or cultural event.

3. Stroll Down Rainbow Street

For a taste of Amman’s modern side, head to Rainbow Street. This bustling avenue is lined with quirky cafes, trendy shops, and vibrant street art. It’s the perfect place to people-watch and soak in the city’s eclectic vibe.

4. Visit the Jordan Museum

Dive deeper into Jordan’s rich history at the Jordan Museum. From ancient artifacts to contemporary exhibits, this museum offers a comprehensive look at the country’s heritage. Highlights include the Dead Sea Scrolls and a 9,000-year-old statue from Ain Ghazal.

5. Experience the Souks

No trip to Amman is complete without a visit to its bustling markets. The Souk Al-Sukar (Sugar Market) and Souk Jara are must-visits. Here, you can haggle for everything from spices and jewelry to traditional crafts and textiles.

6. King Abdullah Mosque (Blue Mosque)

Marvel at the majestic architecture and serene atmosphere of the King Abdullah Mosque, also known as the Blue Mosque, a prominent landmark in Amman. Admire its intricate blue mosaic dome and explore the peaceful interior adorned with Islamic calligraphy and ornate designs.

7. View the Street Art

Take a stroll through Amman’s neighborhoods to discover vibrant street art that adorns walls and buildings, showcasing local and international artistic expressions. Each mural tells a story and adds a contemporary twist to the city’s urban landscape.

8. Odora Mosaico

Visit Odora Mosaico, a unique mosaic art gallery and workshop where you can witness the craftsmanship behind intricate mosaic creations. Explore the gallery’s collection of mosaic artworks and even try your hand at creating your own masterpiece under expert guidance.

9. Art Galleries

Immerse yourself in Amman’s thriving art scene by visiting renowned galleries such as Darat al Funun, Jadal for Knowledge and Culture, Nabad Art Gallery, Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, and Amman Panorama Art Gallery. Discover contemporary Jordanian and international art through exhibitions, workshops, and cultural events.

10. Cooking Class: Beit Sitti

Enjoy on a culinary journey by joining a cooking class at Beit Sitti, where you’ll learn to prepare traditional Jordanian dishes in a charming setting. Enjoy hands-on experience in a kitchen that honors local culture and flavors, followed by a delightful meal shared with new friends.

11. Visit the Markets

Explore Amman’s bustling markets, including Souk Al-Sukar and Souk Jara, where you can shop for spices, textiles, handicrafts, and souvenirs. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere, interact with local vendors, and indulge in authentic Jordanian street food delights.

Where to Eat: Restaurants and Cafes

1. Zghairon Cafe

Located in a charming corner of Amman, Zghairon Cafe offers a cozy atmosphere perfect for enjoying traditional Jordanian breakfasts and aromatic Arabic coffee. Indulge in freshly baked pastries and local specialties while soaking in the lively street scenes.

2. Byat Sara (vegan)

For plant-based delights, head to Byat Sara, where creative vegan dishes take center stage. From hearty salads to innovative mains, each dish is crafted with fresh, locally sourced ingredients, ensuring a guilt-free dining experience.

3. Sufra

Nestled on Rainbow Street, Sufra invites you to savor authentic Jordanian cuisine in a warm and inviting setting. Delight in mouthwatering dishes like mansaf and mezze platters while enjoying panoramic views of Amman’s skyline from the terrace.

4. Hashem Restaurant

An Amman institution, Hashem Restaurant has been serving delectable Middle Eastern fare since 1952. Enjoy their famous falafel, hummus, and ful medames in a bustling, no-frills atmosphere that welcomes locals and tourists alike.

5. Yafa Coffee House

Experience the charm of Jordanian hospitality at Yafa Coffee House, a cozy spot known for its aromatic coffee blends and freshly baked pastries. Whether you’re craving a caffeine fix or a sweet treat, Yafa offers a relaxing retreat from the city’s hustle and bustle.

6. Mijana

Indulge in a sophisticated dining experience at Mijana, where traditional flavors are elevated with a modern twist. Located in a stylish setting, this restaurant offers a diverse menu of gourmet dishes and signature cocktails, perfect for a memorable evening out.

7. Rumi Cafe

Discover the fusion of art and cuisine at Rumi Cafe, a cultural hotspot that doubles as an art gallery. Enjoy a cup of specialty coffee or a light meal while admiring local artworks displayed on the walls, creating a unique dining experience.

8. Jordan Heritage

For a taste of Jordan’s culinary heritage, visit Jordan Heritage, where authentic flavors and traditional recipes take center stage. Indulge in hearty stews, grilled meats, and savory rice dishes in a welcoming environment that celebrates local culture.

9. Rouhi AlAqili

Dine like a local at Rouhi AlAqili, a hidden gem known for its delicious Jordanian home-cooked meals. From savory maqluba to flavorful kebabs, each dish is prepared with love and served in a cozy, family-friendly atmosphere.

10. Jadal Cafe

Unwind at Jadal Cafe, a cultural hub that combines coffee and creativity. Enjoy specialty brews, homemade desserts, and live music performances in a laid-back setting, making it the perfect spot to relax and recharge after a day of exploring Amman.

Final Thoughts

Amman is a city that effortlessly blends the old with the new, offering a rich tapestry of experiences for every traveler. Whether you’re exploring ancient ruins, savoring delectable dishes, or simply soaking in the local culture, Amman promises a trip you’ll never forget. So pack your bags, bring your appetite, and get ready for an adventure in this captivating capital!

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