Hiking and splashing your way through Mujib's canyons are the main reason to visit the reserve. Different trails are open at different times of year – the wet trails are only accessible between April and October as water levels outside of this period can make them too dangerous.

Don't Miss: A Walk on the Wet Side

If you fancy a walk on the wild side, try the 2km Siq Trail (JD21 per person). The wadi is decorated with outrageously banded rock, scooped out and smoothed by the water. Late spring and summer are the perfect times for hiking this ‘wet trail’. And by wet, we really do mean it – at some point you may need to wade waist or chest deep, and the hike culminates in a spectacular waterfall with a large pool where you can swim. After rains, rising water can make the wadi dangerous and inaccessible, so it is closed between November and March.

You don't need a guide for the Siq Trail, but there are three or four points where you need a steadying hand to help cross fast-moving water or to pull yourself up the steps set into boulders. The trickiest parts have ropes, but some of the fixtures aren't brilliantly maintained. Ignore those telling you it’s just a ‘gentle splash’: depending on water levels, it’s more like an assault course, and you'll need decent upper body strength to pull yourself up. Several giant, slippery boulders or obstructions at best require inelegant scrambling, shunting and stretching, and at worst invite a dislocated hip or shoulder. Note that RSCN guides do not carry first aid kits.

Wear hiking sandals rather than leather hiking boots. Water shoes are sold at the visitor centre, but don't rely on your size being available; if you're coming from Amman, buy some at the tourist shops en route to the Dead Sea. Bring a change of clothes. There are changing rooms at the visitor centre but no lockers, though you can leave a locked bag at reception. Take a small backpack that you don't mind getting completely wet, so you can take water to keep yourself hydrated, and carefully wrap your phone/camera. There are no refreshments for sale at the visitor centre apart from water, so bring snacks to revive yourself after the hike.

The trail can get very packed with day trippers from Amman on weekends, so visit during the week if you can.

Siq Trail

The most popular hike on offer, this exciting self-guided 2km wade and scramble into the gorge ends at a dramatic waterfall. Fees are JD21 per person; the trail is open from 1 April to 31 October.

Malaqi Trail

This guided wet trail is one of the reserve’s most popular hikes (per person JD44). It’s a half-day trip involving a hot and unremitting climb into the wadi, a visit to the natural swimming pools of Wadi Hidan and a descent (often swimming) through the siq (gorge). The finale involves rappelling down an 18m waterfall (not suitable for nonswimmers or vertigo sufferers). Open from 1 April to 31 October.

Ibex Trail

This dry winter trail (per person JD21) is a half-day guided hike that leads up to a Nubian ibex enclosure at the Raddas ranger station, along a ridge with views of the Dead Sea, and an optional excursion to the ruined Qasr Riyash. Open from 1 November to 31 March.

Canyon Trail

If you have limited time at Wadi Mujib, tackle the guided wet Canyon Trail (JD31). The trail starts 3km south of the visitor centre and takes around four hours. Open from 1 April to 31 October.

Need to know: Hiking

  • The best months for hiking are April and May.
  • Guided treks usually begin early in the morning.
  • For the wet trails, bring a swimming costume, towel, walking shoes that can get wet, and a waterproof bag. Spare clothes are also recommended. Life jackets are provided.
  • There's a minimum group size of three on some trails.
  • Under 18s are not allowed on the trails.