Paths of Jordan

inspiring experiences and discoveries in Jordan

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Enjoy this particular insight on Jordan, that sheds light upon less known aspects and areas, far from the common highlights and clichés.  Based on a scientific documentation, a wide information is proposed in the menu about the archaeology, history, cultural and natural heritage of this central area of the Middle East. The author follows her personal interests, without claiming to be exhaustive. So many things are still to be told about Jordan!

Here below, some initiatives, workshops and activities in the local communities deserve visibility. It will be relevant and rewarding for a visitor to give space to such beautiful encounters. Individual, domestic or collective, non for profit or lucrative, those projects are essentially located in peripheral areas where job opportunities are limited. Be ready to interactions with the locals and share a bit of your time with them! those experiences will operate a change in yourself. You can freely contact the locals directly through the indications given inside the pages and proceed to direct arrangements. If needed, we will be pleased to assist the initial steps. (This little nudge would not engage our responsibilities on the services...).

In the below portfolio, let your mind evade in the wonderful landscapes as if you would be there... those photos have been pictured during the author's numerous trips till the confines of the country... today, she is very happy to share them with you!

local initiatives, workshops and activities


Al Numeira Environmental Association

The NUMEIRA ENVIRONMENTAL ASSOCIATION (NEA) is located at Ghor Al Mazraa, in the South Dead Sea plain. The association promotes innovative water conservation methods and environmental awareness, and involves efforts for reinforcing ties between the local communities and their ancestral lands. NEA is the place to go if you want to explore the area and understand the factors that challenge the South Dead Sea plain. The association proposes educational bike tours, hiking trips as well as meals prepared by the local community.

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Ride For A Child

"Ride for a Child" is a private initiative proposed by inhabitants of a village located in the Wadi Araba, with the wish to promote their ancestral and still alive camel culture through camel riding trips. The visitors can ride camels in an amazing dunes landscape, for some hours or for some days... the profit of those excursion will support Bedouin children by providing them with school supplies, in order to encourage education.

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The Traditional Bedouin Life Revival Initiative

If you are in search for an authetic and lasting desert life experience, this will be of high interest: you are proposed to spend a certain number of days with a Bedouin family far inside the desert of Wadi Rum for living their everyday life, in total integration as a member of the family...a real human and ethnographic experience! This initiative aims to encourage Bedouin families to recover and preserve their ancestral lifestyle and economy, threatened by the mass tourism, while making foreigners understand and experiment their culture.

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The Taboun Maker's Workshop

No meal without!... Bread holds a central place in the Middle East culture. It is moreover in Jordan that was found the mankind's oldest bread oven. In the village of Orjan, you can visit a lady who still manufactures ancestral clay bread ovens called "taboun", a type of oven attested since the 7th century AD and still in use in the countryside. You will see how the artisan bends clay and straw and how she builds the structure... you may even give a hand-on!

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The Indigo Workshop

This workshop is run by a women cooperative in Ghor Safi under the name of "Safi Crafts". This project successfully revived the ancestral indigo farming and dying in this region, while empowering the women. You will learn and try this traditional dying method, forgotten since the chemical colours have invaded our world.

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The Ostrich Eggs Painting

As other savanna animals, ostriches used to roam in the Jordanian Eastern Desert and Azraq oasis since immemorial times until the Late Antiquity. A women empowerment project initiated by the RSCN has developed the egg painting art in the local community of Azraq. Integrate in your exploration of the Eastern Jordan a visit to a woman artist who will show you her activity and teach you how to decorate an object with the dotting technique...the occasion for a beautiful encounter and a nice afternoon around of a cup of tea!

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The Felt Workshop

This workshop is located in the last village of the South Dead Sea plain before the road engages in the Wadi Araba. Run by the "Princess Taghreed Institute", the felt workshop project has successfully empowered the women of the Fifa community. Crossing the doorstep of this workshop means a valuable experience, where you will learn about the felt processing and other handicrafts performed by the local women. You will even be invited to work hands-on with them...

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The Mosaic Workshop

A visit of Jordan inevitably leads you to some Byzantine churches with outstanding mosaic floors. This art reached its zenith when the Christianity freely expanded in the whole Middle East, taking up and revisiting the classic patterns at the light of the new faith. Guided by young experts, you will enjoy to slip into the skin of a mosaicist and craft your own piece, with a simplified technique.

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The Ceramic Workshop

Making a pottery means a bit taking part to one of the oldest activities of the mankind. Ceramic counts among the first human inventions and Jordan can claim to host one of the first Middle-East sites where pottery emerged, Ain Ghazal. Some hours dedicated to pottery manufacturing, decorating or painting connects you, through gestures replicated from generation to generation, to countless artisans of the past and the present.

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Home Wool Workshop in Mukawir

This home project is located in the breathtaking scenery of Mukawir, close to the famous archaeological site. The local women try to preserve and to transmit to the younger generation the Bedouin wool weaving craft. One of them propose you to learn the different steps of this ancestral activity at her home... a good opportunity to cross a doorstep and discover also other sides of the traditional life in Mukawir.

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Wild Herbs Harvesting

The best period for this activity is early spring, when hills cover up with a green and blooming vegetation. This experience takes you in the North edge of Jordan, around the site of Umm Qais, where you will meet a member of the community who used to settle in the ruins of the site before the archaeological excavations. You will learn how to recognize and collect specific kinds of plants and how to integrate them in a dish.

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Hiking and Home Activities in Birgish

This family home project offers the possibility of hiking in the wooden area of Birgish as well as taking part to home activities as fruits harvesting, bread making, cooking, eventually soap making and more... A nice experience of one or several days, where you will be enjoying nature, tranquillity, friendship and traditions...

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The Rock Art

Visiting some areas of Jordan from the perspective of the rock art would be an original way to roam the Jordanian deserts. Ancient graffiti and inscriptions in pre-Islamic scripts are well attested in the desert of Wadi Rum, but not only... a graffiti hunting can also take you away to beautiful secret places of the unknown Eastern Desert.

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The Nabatean Cave

Overnighting in an authentic Nabataen cave would be an intimate adventure, moreover if this cave hides in a breathtaking scenery. Nested in the Beidha mountains, this shelter will also allow you to experiment the life as numerous Bedouins are partly still running.

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The Safawi Women Life Experience

Located far in the Eastern Desert, Safawi is a village that preserves the authentic Bedouin lifestyle, in connection with the environment and the nature. The local women are ready to welcome you and share with their everyday activities and their ancestral traditions. In the spring, you can join them to work the wool and learn how to weave the Bedouin carpets, a really support to the preservation of this traditional handicraft.

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The Jordan Trail

The Jordan Trail is a hiking path crossing the country from the North to the South. It represents about 40 walking days and 675 km, along which you will pass by approximately 75 agglomerations, many historical sites and a large diversity of stunning sceneries. The initiative aims to develop a full and marked itinerary along the heights over the Jordan Rift Valley in order to cross the whole country by walking as well as to bring an alternative tourism to the local communities.

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Wadi Rum Retreats

The desert may offer much more than you think... especially the desert of Wadi Rum: it is the perfect place for diverse forms of retreats. Pause your life and spend several days isolated in meditation, unless you prefere walking in mindfulness in wide spaces. You may be also deeply inspired the encounter of a therapist woman who has a lot to share with you... or attracted by the contact with horses and camels, whether you ride or not. The desert unsuspected healing resources...

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Orabi's Farm

This is a unique place, as you find nowhere else... in the middle of the culture fields of the South Dead Sea plain, surrounded by a coloured fruit and vegetable garden, amid the greenery of a so generous profusion of plants, you will discover a cute and picturesque little farm... the ideal place to spend an evening, a night and more... a nest where you can see how the farmers used to live, and still live in a some extend, in harmony with nature, following an ancestral permaculture.

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Portfolio


  • Wadi Dahek

  • Wadi Hassa

  • Qasr Burqu area

  • Qasr Assekhim area

  • Wadi Sillam and Sid El Aide (Shobak area)

  • Anjara

  • Safi Surgar Mill

  • Wadi Ma'in

  • Mar Elias area

  • Wadi Araba

  • Azraq Lake

  • The Dolmens

  • Amman

  • The Ruwaished Desert

  • Shaq El Reesh area (Dana)

the video of the month...