Getting There & Away

Burqu is only accessible by 4WD. The lake and castle lie 22km northwest of Ar Ruwayshid, a 45-minute drive across the desert on unmarked and unclear tracks from Hwy 10. The turn-off is about 3km west of Ruwayshid at a sign for Burqu spelt as ‘Boarg’a’. Wild Jordan has a reception centre at Manishiyet El Gheyyath on the main highway where it's possible to arrange transfers to the Burqu Ecolodge, courtesy of the local Bedouin community – a policy aimed at spreading the economic benefits of tourism in the area.

Although the driving is fairly straightforward, with a hard surface to within a few metres of the lake, you should not attempt to find the site without a guide unless you are confident of navigating off-road. If you have experience of desert driving, and provided you stick to the most obvious track, which is often routed between piles of white stone, the lake is fairly easy to find, although it takes quite a bit of nerve to stay your course across the barren land. More difficult is finding your way back to the highway from the lake – almost impossible if you haven’t taken note of any reverse landmarks on the outbound journey (the pylons are helpful and so is the hint of a low, metre-high embankment of a modern reservoir, which you should keep on your left heading towards Burqu). The sense of satisfaction in finding this remarkable little oasis is worth all the anxiety and effort of getting there.