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Everything you need to know about Wadi Rum Camps

Wadi Rum Camp | Bedouin Camping in Jordan

Wadi Rum is one of the popular places to visit on a Jordan Itinerary and a Wadi Rum camp is something you should not miss when you visit Jordan. Whether you want a traditional camel tent or a luxury mars tent, there are plenty of options in the desert. Read more for everything you need to know about desert camps, tours, camels and bedouins that call this place home.

Camp in Wadi Rum - What you need to know about camping in Jordan desert

Wadi Rum Camping Information | Everything you need to know about Wadi Rum Camps | #wadirum #desert #camel #camping #jordan

Where is Wadi Rum?

Wadi rum is the Jordan desert in the south of the country. Driving from Amman to Wadi Rum takes about four hours. Aqaba, the southern port city to Wadi Rum is less than an hour’s drive. While the desert highway passes through this desert, access to Rum village and Al Disa village is by a side road off the highway.

On arrival, you will find a visitors centre, a police station and two villages made up of cement buildings and home to Wadi Rum bedouins, the only prominent residents of the area.

Wadi Rum Desert barefoot

The Desert goes on for miles … and so do the footprints

Wadi Rum Camp Information

There are dozens of camping choices in Wadi Rum. There are traditional goat hair tents with a basic bed and shared washroom facilities, there is cave camping and there are luxury domed tents allowing you to see the stars on a clear night. From basic to luxury there is EVERYTHING in between. Some camps you can drive into. Others you will be picked up at the visitors centre and taken by 4×4 into the desert.

Dining Room Tent at Rum Magic Camp

Dining Room Tent at Rum Magic Camp

Some camps have dance parties late into the night (these are awesome in my kids’ opinions) and others have quiet evenings, bonfires and tea. What you are looking for in a camping experience will dictate the best Wadi Rum bedouin camp for your visit.

Camps inside the Wadi Rum protected area will be more quiet, as loud music is not permitted.

I have stayed at both a typical camp for Arabs, and also a camp that caters to tourists. The main difference is that the camps that cater to the Arabs have limited speaking English staff. My favourite camp is called Rum Magic Camp, and is one of these camps that caters to Arabs. But do not get me wrong, there are always tourists there as well, and they do have staff that speak English.

Rum Magic camp offers excellent food, you can drive in, it has wifi (in the cafe area), offers a super fun dance party (my kids love it) in the evenings (this is sometimes only on Thursdays and Fridays as they also have guests who just common from Aqaba for dinner and entertainment). I have also been here and been the only guest. It made for a nice quiet trip where we explored the nearby sand dunes, watched the sunset, and were made a private meal by the staff. Rum Magic camp has basic bathrooms (bring some of your own tissues) and showers, and basic tents, as well as a cement building option. Why not stay in a goat hair tent if you have the chance in my experience, but the choice is yours. they are also working on luxury tents with private showers and bathrooms. I am excited to see these finished and try them out!

Hasan Zawaideh camp Luxury Tent

Hasan Zawaideh Luxury Tent with three single beds, toilet and shower, electricity and heat

The complete opposite to Rum Magic camp, is Hasan Zawaideh Camp. It always gets excellent reviews on Booking.com and you can see my full review here. Mahmoud will ensure you have a great stay and their camp offers luxury tents, excellent food and they are happy to arrange any excursions that you may wish to take. Hasan Zawaideh camp is also drive in, but they are happy to pick you up at the visitor’s center if you arrive without a vehicle.

Types of Wadi Rum Camp Tents

Tent in Wadi Rum

These goat hair tents are a long row of connecting rooms sharing an inside wall. They have zipper doors and basic beds

Goat Hair

A goat hair tent is your basic choice when it comes to Wadi Rum tents. They are often arranged in rows, with connecting side walls and a zipper closed door. They offer beds with linens and they will have separate shared bathroom facilities.

Cement Style Room

These are also basic accommodation but with cement walls instead of tent walls. These are better if you are easily disturbed by noise. They have an actual door that closes, and basic beds.

Luxury Tents

These luxury tents are built from cement and then covered in goat’s hair. They offer more luxuries than typical tents

 

Luxury Tents

Luxury tents are exactly what they sound like. Beautifully coloured walls inside a goat haired covered house. They usually have their own bathroom and shower and queen sized beds. Some camps also offer these for families or with single beds.

If you are looking for a luxury tent, they are abundant now in Wadi Rum. I personally enjoyed Hasan Zawaideh Camp but other popular ones are Sun City Camp, which is known for great service and Captains Camp.

Captains Camp Luxury Cave Accommodation

Can you say you have spent the night in a Cave? A Luxury Cave?

Cave Camping

Something that I recently saw at Captain’s Camp Wadi Rum is the option to sleep IN A CAVE. A LUXURY CAVE! Everything that you get in a luxury tent including a sky light and your own private camping experience. I am hoping to visit Captain”™s Camp and try out this cave soon!

Mars Tents or Bubble Tents

These are luxury bubble tents that offer star gazing and a view of the desert from the comfort of your own room. Perfectly positioned for a view of the desert, these luxury tents also feature double or queen beds, air conditioning, and private washroom facilities. One of the popular camps offering this is Sun City Wadi Rum Camp. Note that these are not totally glass style and only offer a large viewing window of the desert. They do offer privacy.

If you are interested in a Martian tent while you visit Wadi Rum, check out Sun City Camp. This camp is popular with tourists and groups and should be booked in advance.

If you want to read more, check out the Best Martian Experience

Wadi Rum’s desert is a moon-like landscape and sometimes the area is referred to as the “valley of the moon”

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What is Wadi Rum known for?

Wadi Rum a UNESCO World Heritage site and a popular eco-adventure destination for Jordanians and visitors to Jordan. It offers sandstone cliffs and mountains for trekkers and climbers as well as camel safaris from 1 hour to multi day rides. It is a frequent day-trip spot, but also popular for camping, as luxury camping spots and star gazing experiences are sought-after by tourists.

The top of… Umm Fruth Rock Bridge inside Wadi Rum – this is usually part of a three hour Jeep Tour

Its Mars-like landscape is covered with red sand and its towering mountains reaching 1750m. Sometimes referred to as the Valley of the Moon, Wadi Rum’s landscape was the backdrop for the movie “the Martian” and was also used as the moon Jedha in StarWars Rogue One movie. It was also the backdrop of the 1962 film Lawrence of Arabia.

The best way to explore is on a Wadi Rum Jeep Tour. These can be arranged on arrival from the Wadi Rum visitors center, and prices start at JD35. If you are short on time and can only spend a few hours here, this is the best way to get a good taste of the desert. However, I highly suggest that everyone who visits should spend the night at a Wadi Rum bedouin camp

Camels in the Desert in Wadi Rum

Riding Camels into the Sunset was one of my favourite parts of our first Wadi Rum trip

T E Lawrence of Arabia spent a significant amount of time in Wadi Rum during the Arab Revolt during World War One.

The highlights of this amazing desert can be best accessed by a Jeep on a Wadi Rum Tour that can be arranged at the visitors centre (rates start at JD35).

  • Seven Pillars of Wisdom – visible from the Wadi Rum Visitors Centre
  • Lawrence’s Spring – beautiful views of the desert can be seen from Lawrence’s spring
  • Lawrence’s House – while famously known as where Lawrence of Arabia stayed while in Wadi Rum, it is not much more than rubble in the desert.
  • Anfashieh Inscriptions – carvings on the rocks depicting early caravans across the desert. These date back to the Nabatean and Thaumadic period (over 2000 years ago)
  • Umm Fruth Rock Bridge – a steep scramble up to this wadi rum rock bridge is worth it to see the desert infront of you, and to pose for a great photo!
  • Siq al-Khazali – this narrow canyon contains many Nabataean rock carvings of people and animals. It is worth a stop to walk into the small siq and look at the carvings up above you.
Nabatean Carvings in Wadi Rum

Nabatean Carvings in Wadi Rum

Rum village and Al Disa village

As a visitor to the Jordan desert, you probably will not notice that there are actually two villages in Wadi Rum. These villages are quite small, mostly one main road with a few local shops and a gas station. Inhabited by the local bedouin tribes, tourism in the desert is their main source of income. Many will drive 4×4 trucks, conduct camel treks, own bedouin camps or sell souvenirs. Other residents work in local shops or raise goats or chicken to support the village.

Wadi Rum village is accessed by passing the Wadi Rum visitor’s center.

Al Disa village turn off is before the Rum visitors centre (where you see the police checkpoint), but you need to register your arrival at the visitors centre, pay your JD5 for your entrance fee, before going back to the Al Disa turnoff.

While it may seem trivial to register your arrival in the desert, it is for your own safety. If something was to occur, the tourist police in Wadi Rum know which camp you are in and can provide any assistance if required. While I have never had any problems requiring the tourist police (expect trying to figure out how to renew my Jordan visitor visa), they are an important part of maintaining safety and security in the region should any guests of Jordan require assistance.

unearthing the Zarb – the underground even cooking juicy meat and veggies

What to Expect – Wadi Rum Bedouin Camp Experience

Many camps will provide traditional bedouin meals and sweet bedouin tea. Your camp price will likely include dinner and breakfast, and many camps offer tea through the day and evening. This sweet, aromatic tea is kept hot by the fire and is served in small cups. If there is no fire, they will likely have it in a hot thermos. Still good, but not as good as by the fire.

Dinner will lily be a selection of salads, with rice and meat cooked in a “zarb.” A Zarb is an underground oven which has layers of meat and veggies cooked under the sand. Once cooked, the sand is shovelled away, the lid is removed and the meat is taken out and served on a large platter. It is so moist it mostly falls off the bone.

Make sure you bring some water into the camp, or most camps will have water, soft drinks and shisha for sale. You might also bring a few snacks if you like to snack between meals.

Captains Camp in Wadi Rum

Respectable Dress

Always dress modestly while in Wadi Rum. While the sun is hot, short shorts and tanks tops is considered disrespectful. Local bedouins will likely never say anything to you, but you should respect their culture and ensure your dress is modest while you are in Wadi Rum.

Read my Packing List for Jordan post for clothing tips and my other must have items for visiting Jordan!

carvings on the walls of the Siq al-Khazali

carvings on the walls of the Siq al-Khazali

Wadi Rum Tours and Information

Wadi Rum Entrance fee for tourists is JD5 (If you have a Jordan Pass, your pass includes this fee)

Jeep Tours start at JD35

Rates for camping start at about JD20

Camel Safari’s start at JD20

These can be arranged on arrival at the visitors centre.

Getting to Wadi Rum

The Wadi Rum visitors centre is 30 kilometres off the desert highway. While it is not an area served by tourist transport or even a local bus, there is some information online about busses that may run once a day to the area. You can also take a local bus and get dropped off at the turnoff to Rum and make your way into the visitors center.

Taxis from Aqaba to Wadi Rum cost about JD25

I do not have personal experience with taking the daily bus from Petra to Wadi Rum or Wadi Rum to Petra, but you can ask about it from your hotel. I have read online that it does exist but have no information on it. Jordanians are all very welcoming and helpful, it is not the kind of country where you will be given misleading information or poor information about how to do things. The biggest problem is sometimes their understanding of English, but in the hotels and tourist places, Jordanians english is excellent.

I prefer to rent a car from Amman ( about JD25 a day ) since I have two kids and it makes our travels much more comfortable and allows us to stop along the way. There is a lot more info on this on my post called Getting around in Jordan.

Sunset Hiking in Wadi Rum

Wadi Rum Weather

The weather in Wadi Rum depends on the season. I have visited in March and it has been less than 5 C at night and quite cold. I have also been in April and it has been over 20C at night and hot! Ensure you pack layers, if you are visiting in the winter or early spring bring a warm jacket and do not be afraid to ask for extra blankets if you are sleeping in a goat hair tent (the only way to go in my opinion! you are camping!)

Bring a hat and sunglasses for your Wadi Rum tour as the sun can be very hot on the back of a 4×4 and after these tours happen in the middle of the day. Wear a hat and long sleeves for your camel trek as well.

If you want more tips about planning a visit to Jordan or more information about the country start with this post I wrote about Safety in Jordan. I have plenty of other Jordan content, feel free to drop a comment with many questions and I will get back to you as soon as I can!

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Wadi Rum Camping Information | Everything you need to know about Wadi Rum Camps | #wadirum #desert #camel #camping #jordan … WADI RUM DESERT CAMPING | Bedoiun Camping in Jordan

Lindsay is the founder and editor of Carpe Diem OUR Way. She left her career in Canada to share her love of travel with her two young boys. She is passionate about sharing adventure travel activities for families and to encourage others to explore the world. She resides in the suburbs of Vancouver when not jet setting abroad.

14 thoughts on “Everything you need to know about Wadi Rum Camps

  1. Marcus and Mel

    Great information as we have been thinking of visiting Jordan. We were aware of Wadi Rum because of the Lawrence of Arabia connection and the Jeep Tour sounds a good way of exploring the area. We fancy staying in the “Luxury Cave” too.

  2. Fiona Maclean

    Personally I’d be in the Captain’s Cave – I love your enthusiasm for the goat hair tents but I’m just that bit beyond basic camping these days!

    I love the pics of your kids in the desert though – my own parents travelled a lot when I was young and this takes me back

  3. Lisa Chavis

    This is great overview of the Wadi Rum camping experience! We did this a few years ago and it was a highlight of our Jordan trip…we didn’t see the caves, though – those are great! 😉 Thanks for sharing these awesome photos!

  4. Ghia Lorenzo

    This is an awesome experience! Those tents even looked so comfy, clean, and very relaxing. I also love the decoration of the tents and how they cook delicious food by using sand is amazing. Thank you for sharing this post! I really love what can Wadi Rum can offer for every visitors. I love all of the pictures.

  5. Jenn and Ed Coleman

    I was just talking to a friend about visiting Jordan and glamping at Wadi Rum is now on my wish list. I would love to say I stayed in a luxury cave. Those buildings are just so cool and look like they came straight out of Doctor Suess. This seems like a really cool experience all around.

  6. Marissa

    It is my dream to camp at Wadi Rum! I was supposed to do it this year but have to put it on hold. It’d be amazing to see the stars at night out there.

  7. Karla Ramos

    I want to try staying in a luxury tent and a luxury cave. It is an experience that is now in my bucket list. Of course, Wadi Rum is in my list of places to go to as well!

  8. Christopher Rudder

    I’m not sure why or what I was thinking (or wanting) but I saw the word rum and got super excited. Lol. That being said this looks totally cool too!!! Something about being in the dessert is awesome and peaceful. Probably really hot. The inside of that tent is incredible and honestly looks no different than a hotel.

  9. Apple

    Dear Lindsay,

    Thanks for the informative blog!

    Where can i book the luxury Captain’s cave? Can’t seem to find anything online.

    Thank you

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