Aqaba attractions

Bird Sanctuary in Aqaba

Aqaba Bird Observatory

Run by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, this bird sanctuary is an artificially created wetland that's become host to a variety of species that use the area as a stopping-off point on the great bird …
Fort in Aqaba

Aqaba Fort

The fort (currently closed for renovation with no set reopening date) was built between 1510 and 1517, as attested by the Arabic inscriptions inside the monumental gateway, and was used as a khan (travellers’ inn) f…
Museum in Aqaba

Aqaba Museum

The museum, closed in 2017 for renovation of the Aqaba Fort complex, was previously the home of the great-great-grandfather of the present king, Abdullah II. The collection of artefacts includes coins, ceramics and …
Aquarium in Aqaba

Aqaba Aquarium

This aquarium is part of the Aqaba Marine Science Station, although its location in the shadow of the ferry terminal doesn't make you feel particularly close to nature. Over a series of large and small tanks, you're…
Landmark in Aqaba

Arab Revolt Flagpole

Standing a massive 137m high and with a flag measuring 20m by 40m, this is Aqaba's most easily spotted landmark by some degree. Look closer, however, and you'll see the flag isn't Jordanian as you might expect. Inst…
Beach in Aqaba

Public Beach

Packed at the weekend and on public holidays, this stretch of rather minimal sand beneath the palm trees offers a fun and sociable way to engage with Jordanians at play. During eids (Islamic feasts), the family part…
Ruins in Aqaba

Ancient Church at Ayla

To the untrained eye, these ruins look unprepossessing to say the least, but archaeologists maintain that the remains of this ancient mud-brick complex represent the oldest purpose-built church in the world. The fou…
Ruins in Aqaba


Located along the Corniche and incongruously squeezed between the marina and the Mövenpick Resort Hotel, Ayla is the site of the ancient port of Aqaba. Fading noticeboards in English pinpoint items of interest. Arch…
Museum in Aqaba

Aqaba Heritage Museum

This free museum, in the shadow of the giant flagpole, is moderately diverting. There are some fascinating period photos of Aqaba, including at the time of the Arab Revolt, and a reproduction of a letter from the Pr…
Mosque in Aqaba

Sharif Al Hussein Bin Ali Mosque

This grand and beautiful gleaming white mosque – an icon of Aqaba – is named for the great-great-grandfather of the current king, the emir of Mecca who proclaimed the Arab Revolt.