One of the most popular destinations in southern Jordan, this area is home to beautiful nature and incredible cultural and historical sites, including a Crusaders’ castle.
Halfway between Amman and Petra is the Karak Governorate, whose capital city is Al-Karak (also known simply as Karak). This area is a naturally beautiful place to stop in the middle of a journey through Jordan. Don’t miss Karak Castle, the star attraction and one of the best examples of a Crusader castle in the Middle East. The walled town of Karak is the best place to stay, but day trips outside the city walls will take you on a tour of many fascinating sites.
In Karak town, climb up to Karak Castle, the highest point in the area, and admire the beautiful views over rolling hills. Construction and excavation work is often in progress here, but even if you can’t get inside, the detailed placards around the structure make for a fascinating self-guided tour. Down the hill is the Al Karak Museum, which houses many of the artifacts found on the castle site.
Just steps from the castle is Castle Plaza. Explore the complex of beautifully restored Ottoman buildings. Stroll through the authentic souk, where you can browse the eclectic array of items for sale and photograph the charming shops.
In Rabba, a town to the north, wander through the Ar Rabba Ruins, a 3rd-century Roman temple that now lies in ruins. For some clean air and a refreshing swim, venture out to Mujib Nature Reserve. Swim in pristine ravines and hike to viewpoints to take in stunning vistas.
If you are staying in Amman or Petra, make the time to pay a visit to Al Karak and the scenic areas around it. Al Karak’s location near the two much more prominent destinations makes it an excellent choice for a trip. Choose to stop for an hour or two to have a picnic as you explore the castle, or stay overnight to get to know the place better.