From afar, Amman can merely look as a sea of apartment blocks. However, once you start exploring the streets, you begin to see the beauty in this dense city. With a scattering of roman ruins, my first recommendation is to view the city from above from the Amman citadel (or Jabal al-Qal’a in Arabic).
Views from the Amman Citadel
It’s a great way to put the area into perspective, and if you didn’t before, you’ll certainly know after what I meant by an apartment block sea. It’s also great if you’re into your history, up at the citadel you’ll find the Temple of Hercules (and three of his fingers) dating back to 162-166 AD, the same period as the Roman theatre found below (as seen in my pic!). The citadel also includes remains from other periods, and the Jordan Archaeological Museum is brimming with artifacts found in the area, dating back tens of thousands of years.
Once you’ve observed from above, make sure you get down to ground level and have a wander around down town – if you’re feeling hungry definitely check out Hashem, Amman’s famous falafel restaurant, followed by knafeh at Habibah sweets just around the corner!
Amman’s roman theatre
Keep an eye out for Amman’s extravagant graffiti
I spent my time living in Marj Al-Hammam whilst in Jordan, which is a nice and quiet residential area. However, if you’re staying for a short amount of time I’d definitely recommend living somewhere more central as it can be costly to get around. It’s really difficult to get around the city on foot as there are so many highways, so you’ll find yourself using taxis majority of the time.
My favourite area is Al-Weibdeh, which is a really fun place filled with cafes, restaurants and great graffiti. This is where I would usually go for food, but click here to find more about your food options in Amman. From Weibdeh you can also access the blue King Abdullah Mosque as shown in the distance below, this is open to Muslims and non-Muslims alike, so long as you are dressed appropriately!
Because of all the hills in Amman the blue mosque can be seen in the distance whilst walking the streets of Weibdeh!
Sunset driving through Marj Al-Hammam
Besides Amman’s youthful Weibdeh area, Rainbow Street is also a great option for a buzz of cafes and bars. Amman’s nightlife is relatively minimal considering the size of the city, but there are some really fun nights to be had, such as Tequila Tuesdays at Café de Paris or nightclub CLSTR.
It’s also definitely worth keeping an eye on the different events happening around Amman during the time of your stay, a friend and I managed to get tickets to see famed Lebanese singer Wael Kfoury at Le Royal Amman Hotel along with a three-course meal. A very pricey but fun evening!
Inside Le Royal Amman hotel
Desert is served… (unfortunately didn’t taste as good as it looked)
I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Amman, and more broadly Jordan, and have some really fond memories of the country, particularly for my experience living with a Jordanian family. Having said this, I like to think I write as honestly as possible. Therefore, despite the high prices, I would highly recommend visiting Jordan for a holiday and seeing the beautiful sites the country has to offer, including Petra. But, I don’t think you need to spend a long time here to get an understanding of the place and I wouldn’t really recommend this as somewhere for long-term residency. As ever, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me!