The most unique places to stay in Jordan are the Bedouin luxury camps in Wadi Rum. This fairytale desert location offers magical nights in stunning Bedouin tents and special glamping sites in remote locations in the desert. Wadi Rum is one of the most beautiful places in Jordan to visit and staying in a Wadi Rum luxury camp is an essential part of the desert experience in our opinion. Continue reading for the best tips for a unique desert stay in Jordan!
How to get to Wadi Rum in Jordan
Wadi Rum is located in the south of Jordan. A wadi in Jordan is a valley, just as this beautiful landscape is a valley between rocks of sandstone and granite. It is also called the Valley of the Moon because of the almost unearthly landscapes.
The Wadi Rum desert is not far from the border with Saudi Arabia. The distances in the country are not big, so Wadi Rum is located close to other tourist destinations in Jordan. The southern resort of Aqaba on the Red Sea is about 60 kilometers east of the desert. We recommend renting a car in Jordan, as public transport is very minimal. With a (rental) car you can drive from Wadi Rum to Aqaba in an hour and the famous sights of Petra are less than two hours drive. You can drive to the capital Amman in just over 4 hours.
When you arrive at the desert, you will first drive past the Visitor Center. Here, visitors must first register and pay the entrance fee of 5 JD for Wadi Rum. Do you have a Jordan Pass (which we absolutely recommend)? Then access is free. Then you drive to Wadi Rum Village, where you can safely park your rental car. Someone from your Wadi Rum luxury camp will pick you up in the village and take you into the desert to their camp.
Why Wadi Rum is worth a visit
Next to the Dead Sea and Petra, Wadi Rum is probably the most visited place in Jordan. And we absolutely understand why. The desolate atmosphere, the beautiful landscape and the hospitality of the Bedouins provide an unforgettable travel experience. An overnight stay in a Bedouin camp completes the desert experience. As there is hardly any light pollution, you’ll have the perfect opportunity for star gazing and enjoying the clearest starry sky ever!
Wadi Rum is 720 square meters, making it the largest wadi in Jordan. The beautiful valley is famous for its red sand surrounded by rocks of sandstone and granite. It is a stunning, otherworldly landscape that is one of the best landmarks of Jordan. Since 2011, Wadi Rum has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Maybe the landscape even looks familiar to you. It was the filming location of Star Wars and the Oscar-winning Lawrence of Arabia! This last film chose a very striking filming location, as this was also the place where the British officer and archaeologist Thomas Edward Lawrence – also known as Lawrence of Arabia – stayed for a long time at the beginning of the last century.
The most fun thing to do in Wadi Rum is a 4×4 desert jeep tour of 2 to 8 hours. You usually book your jeep tour at your desert camp. Your guide will drive you around the beautiful desert landscape in a 4×4, stopping at the best places to visit in Wadi Rum. You will visit petroglyphs, gorges, Bedouin camps, rock bridges, unusual rock formations, sand dunes and more. If there are specific locations you would like to visit, it is good to tell your guide in advance so your desert tour can be tailored accordingly.
Best time to visit Wadi Rum: winter or summer?
Deserts are known for their scorching hot summers and freezing winters. Wadi Rum is a unique exception to this!
Although the Jordanian desert also has high summer temperatures and much colder winter days, the fluctuations are smaller because this part of Jordan is high above sea level. Wadi Rum has temperatures of about 30 °C in summer and 10-15 °C in winter. At night it cools down considerably and the temperature drops to 0 °C. But in winter it can be much colder on some days and it can even snow in the desert, which is an absolutely unique thing to experience.
Although every season has its charm, we would recommend visiting the Jordanian desert in spring and autumn. The temperatures are then most pleasant: not too hot and not too cold. As this is the best time to visit Wadi Rum and Jordan, spring and autumn are high seasons. So you have to take into account more crowds, booking your stays well in advance and higher prices.
Glamping in Wadi Rum
An overnight stay in the desert of Wadi Rum is one of the best things to do in Jordan. Scattered through the desert landscape are the most beautiful glamping camps you can imagine. The Bedouins from the desert have created many tented camps in Wadi Rum for a unique travel experience. The tents in the glamping camps vary from authentic nomad tents to luxurious domes.
For the best desert experience, we recommend booking a stay with one of the stunning Wadi Rum luxury camps. The tents have a private bathroom and sometimes even air conditioning. No matter how luxurious your sleeping place is, the electricity comes from generators or solar panels and the water is brought to the camp in large tanks. At these luxury glamping camps, you will not experience any of that and you’ll have the same facilities as you’ll usually have in a world-class luxury hotel.
Do we recommend spending one night or two nights in the desert? We chose to stay in the desert for only one night. You then only have two half days in the desert: the first day in the afternoon and the next day in the morning. You will have to make sure to schedule your jeep tour on one of these half-days. If you want to spend a full day in the desert and thus really experience this place to the fullest, we recommend that you book two nights. You can enjoy your jeep tour on this full day in the desert and still have plenty of time for some other activities, star gazing and stunning sunsets and sunrises.
The 10 best Bedouin luxury camps in Wadi Rum
The range of unique desert camps scattered throughout Wadi Rum is vast and each one provides an unforgettable experience. That’s why we’re here to help you with the 10 best places to stay in Wadi Rum if you’re looking for a luxury glamping, each with rave reviews and extremely high review ratings from their guests.
#1 Wadi Rum Bedouin Camp for one of the most popular places to stay in Jordan. Guests stay in a beautiful desert camp with tents and domes overlooking the sand plain from their private terraces. The small-scale camp is run by a family and has an intimate atmosphere. Wadi Rum Bedouin Camp offers a children’s playground, Jeep tours, camel rides and hiking options.
#2 Memories Aicha Luxury Camp for luxury glamping in 55 domes in a circular formation in the heart of the desert. This Wadi Rum luxury camp has the same facilities as you would expect in a world-class luxury hotel. Guests stay in beautifully furnished and seethrough domes with a private bathroom and air conditioning. The desert resort is extremely photogenic down to the smallest details. Guests can enjoy the extensive breakfast buffet, on-site restaurant, outdoor barbecue facilities, library and outdoor terrace.
#3 Wadi Rum Dream Camp for a Bedouin camp with traditional tents, where the sound of Bedouin stories and music fills the air at the end of the day and authentic meals are prepared for the guests. But tradition is combined with luxury. Free WiFi is available throughout the camp. The tents are equipped with comfortable beds and tents with both shared and private bathrooms are available.
#4 Wadi Rum Bubble Luxotel for luxury domes with private bathroom, panoramic views of the red desert and mountains and terrace with hot tub. The Bubble Luxotel is slightly different from the other desert camps offering domes and bubbles consisting of one large bubble, Bubble Luxotel has tents composed of several small bubbles. A see-through bubble for the bedroom, one for the bathroom and a large bubble with panoramic views for the living area. Staying one or preferably two nights in the bubbles is a special experience. The roof is transparent, so you can see the beautiful starry sky from your bed.
#5 Wadi Rum UFO Luxotel for spending the night in a bubble in a special desert setting. The bubbles are a kind of glamping tents with a private bathroom and a seating area with panoramic views of the vast desert landscape and mountains. UFO Luxotel even offers wifi. In the evening, after 10 p.m., all outside lights are turned off, so guests can experience the beautiful starry sky.
#6 Desert Magic Camp & Resort for a sustainable desert camp in Wadi Rum. The attractively furnished tents are located in a camp right next to a rock wall for shelter and offer stunning views of the moon-like landscape with red sand dunes and mountains. Each tent has a fully equipped private bathroom with a shower and free toiletries. Breakfast is available every morning, and includes buffet, vegetarian and vegan options. In the evenings, there is a campfire and Bedouin music.
#7 Zeina Desert Lodge for a desert camp with different types of glamping tents with private bathrooms. The camp overlooks the famous Seven Pillars of Wisdom, which is one of the best-known rock formations in the Jordanian desert. There are round domes, but also large house-shaped family tents. For visitors in the summer it is nice to know that the tents even have air conditioning! The rave reviews praise the friendly staff, the price-quality ratio, the delicious food and the beautiful tents.
#8 Hasan Zawaideh Camp for a popular luxury camp in the Jordanian desert. Set among the red dunes of Wadi Rum, Hasan Zawaideh Camp offers Bedouin-style tents for couples and families. The tents of Hasan Zawaideh are decorated with oriental carpets and colourful bed covers. Thick wool blankets are provided against the cold desert nights. It has an excellent location to explore the Jordanian Desert. In the evenings, guests can sit around the campfire and taste authentic, freshly prepared Bedouin dishes. Guests praise the price-quality ratio, friendly staff, unique setting and comfortable tents.
#9 Palmera Camp Wadi Rum for a popular desert camp offering stunning glamping tents in a Martian setting surrounded by red mountains. Palmera Camp has a wonderful layout with comfortable and authentic lounge areas. There is a seasonal outdoor swimming pool, a terrace, a restaurant and barbecue facilities. The food is incredible with a feast of salads, dips and traditionally cooked meat and rice.
#10 Sun City Camp for one of the more affordable luxury camps in the Jordan desert. Sun City offers a glamping experience with both authentic tents and Martian domes, overlooking the vast desert landscape of Wadi Rum. The spacious tents and domes have large windows for optimal views, air conditioning and a bathroom fitted with a bathtub or a shower.