Jordan by Motorcycle

Code: JOR/MOT/MAR/19
7 Days
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Fixed Departure Dates: March 2019. See itinerary for details.

No one has ever run motorbike trips in Jordan before, and we’re mightily proud to be the first people to do so.

This seven-day ride carves a serpentine course around the best that Jordan has to offer. And believe us when we say that Jordan has it all to offer!

You’ll traverse red deserts and empty spaces, snorkel over an aquamarine coral paradise, roar past the solitude of Lawrence of Arabia’s Wadi Rum (where scenes from The Last Jedi were recently filmed), feast on delicious food and stay in Bedouin desert camps.

We’ll take in all the major historical sites of interest – including Petra, one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World – and of course you’ll have the chance to float in the oh-so-weird Dead Sea, the lowest point on Earth at 440 metres below sea level. But you won’t be behind some flag-waving guide or incarcerated in a tour bus between the sites – you’ll do all this from the saddle of a bike on some of the best roads you can imagine riding.

To boot, since the law against foreigners riding motorbikes here has only just been lifted, you’ll be among the very first outsider to have ever explored this gorgeous and hospitable country by motorcycle. Our director, Marley, had a taster ride in early 2018 and was totally blown away by the experience. You can read about it here

A world-first, week-long motorcycle ride on some of the best tarmac roads on the planet. What are you waiting for?

DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION Amman Queen Alia International Airport
DEPARTURE TIME Please ensure you arrive in good time for our scheduled departure from Amman
INCLUDED
  • Rental of a Motorcycle (model TBC), fully insured, prepared and maintained for your use.
  • Fuel
  • Accommodation in a range of homestays and hotels. These will range from simple family run Bedouin homestays to 3-4* hotels in the cities we pass through.
  • All meals, breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Local airport transfers
  • A professional guiding team including either Ants or Marley from SRA and an English speaking local guide.
  • Back-up vehicle and luggage transfers
  • Fresh filtered water + a Water 2 Go water filtration bottle, in order to reduce plastic waste
  • Professional route planning and logistics, backed by risk assessments, emergency procedures, satellite communications (where necessary) and medical support. We don’t take risks lightly and we plan for all eventualities, believing it is better to have prepared and not require a procedure than not to plan at all. We also carry a very well stocked First Aid and Trauma medical kit and have been First Aid and Trauma trained by the excellent team at Crux Medical.
NOT INCLUDED
  • International Flights to/from Amman – we can organise these for you as part of the package – please advise us if you need this.
  • Entrance fees to Petra World Heritage Site
  • Guide gratuity
  • Your personal clothing and any riding equipment you might need
  • Extra daily costs for snacks, alcohol or souvenirs
  • Your personal travel insurance
  • Visas and other permits as required

We’ll provide you with a bike on arrival, and your luggage will be in our support vehicle, allowing you to ride unencumbered by weight and kit. Soon you’ll be telling the world about the empty, twisting, desert roads this fabulous country has to offer.

There will be a maximum of eight people in the group. Read on to find out more.

Huge thanks to Ryan Edwardson @ryanedwardson and Scott Wilson @scott_departures for their pictures.

NB: This Itinerary is Under Development
We aim to provide at least two departures: 2nd – 9th March (ONE final place remaining)
and 10th -17th March 2019.

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Day 1: Saturday 2nd March

Arrive Queen Alia International Airport, Amman, Jordan
Flights from the UK (Royal Jordanian or British Airways direct, many other indirectly) or from your home destination will be met today and you will be transferred to our hotel for the night, a comfortable 4* in the capital city, Amman.

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Day 2: Sunday 3rd March

Lift Off!
It’s chocks away as we hit the road and drive South. We’ll head down the Kings Highway, crossing spectacular Wadi Mojeb, skirt the district of Tafila, have lunch by a 2000 year-old castle and end our night at a Bedouin camp in the Dhana Biosphere Reserve.

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Day 3: Monday 4th March

Dhana – Wadi Rum
This morning we are up fairly early to get to Petra, a truly deserved wonder of the world. You could spend a week here in this vast 200 square kilometre site, but we’ll get to wander around for much of the day soaking up the sights and sounds. In the late afternoon, we’ll hit the road and cross to the Desert Highway for a blast down to our night’s accommodation at another Bedouin camp in Wadi Rum. Sunset among the red stone and sands of Wadi Rum can be a special experience.

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Day 4: Tuesday 5th March

Wadi Rum – Aqaba
We’ll have a relatively leisurely start today with just over a hour-or-so ride down to Aqaba, sitting at head of the eponymous gulf and sandwiched between Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. We will take you to our 4* hotel and then you’ll have the chance to swim over and snorkel among some of the most diverse and colourful coral gardens in the world. Good food, good company and a relaxed pace will set you up for tomorrow’s riding bliss…

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Day 5: Wednesday 6th March

Aqaba – Amman
Riding north through the desert on the Dead Sea Highway, we will turn up into the mountains again after an hour or so, following one epic set of switchbacks after another. The desert stretches out behind us to the West Bank and beyond, whilst ahead are a couple of hundred kilometres of delightful winding roads. We’ll take in a couple of improbably-located Crusader castles as we again turn towards the Dead Sea. We’ll take a dip (well, float really) at the lowest point on our planet and hopefully see a glimpse of a gorgeous sunset before we head into Amman for the night.

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Day 6: Thursday 7th March

Amman – Ajloun
A short distance today in a straight line, but we are going to take the scenic route today. The landscape will have changed from the grand deserts of the south and now we’ll find ourselves in the oaks, olives and pines among rolling hills. We’ll take time to cook a wild brunch from local ingredients up in the hills and you’ll have time to visit another of the ancient Roman cities hereabouts – Jerash. This, together with Um Qais and either others formed the Decapolis League of Cities for about 150 years from 50 BC. The sites are highly impressive. Most don’t suffer from the hordes of tourists you’ll see in the Roman cities of Europe, so consider this a sort of private viewing.

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Day 7: Friday 8th March

Aijloun Castle – Umm Qais – Amman
Umm Qais has an enviable situation on its hill, and you can see why it was chosen all those years ago. Huge amphitheatres, colonnaded streets and basilica overlook Lake Tiberius (Sea of Galilee) and the hills of the Golan Heights. To the north you can see to the Syrian border, and on a clear day, if you use your imagination you might spot Mount Hermon, the highest peak in Israel up on the Lebanese border. We’ll take the winding roads back to Amman for what will be our final night in the city. We’ll make sure to take you to eat the most famous falafels in the city and sample some of the evening life in the ancient city of Philadelphia

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Day 8: Saturday 9th March

Amman – Home
 We will get you to the airport in good time for your flight home today. You’ll fly away with wonderful memories of this country and its people.

Where will we be staying?

On this expedition, we’ll be staying in some comfortable hotels in Amman and Aqaba, guest houses or basic hotels in other towns, and in homestays / camps with the local people and their families. We feel that true luxury is getting to know a place and its people, not necessarily measured by the thread count of the bed linen or the number of hotel restaurants. Give us a real experience any day.

What size of group will it be?

Our group sizes are always small, allowing for an intimate experience of the places and cultures we meet along our path. On the Jordan motorbike expedition, group size is just eight guest riders.  We usually find groups are made of like-minded people, both male and female, from a wide age range. We like our expeditions to be have a personal touch throughout and you’ll be accompanied at all times not only by our highly-knowledgeable local guides, but also by one of the directors of Silk Road Adventures.

How is this different to other itineraries in Jordan I’ve seen?

No-one else offers this itinerary or anything like it in Jordan.

Riding a rented motorcycle in Jordan only became legal for foreigners in March 2018. We were there very soon afterwards to ride along with the Jordan Tourist Board. The route we have developed is a result of that trip and we are the only company offering the chance to ride this wonderful country.

What will the weather be like?

March is normally just outside the rainy season in Jordan. It is also varied, because in a few short kilometres you can go from 440m below sea level to 1400+ metres above sea level. That can mean a lot of change in temperature, and mountains can always bring a chance of rain.

That said, this is a dry country so on the whole you should plan for warm weather riding  – around 20C but have your waterproofs and thermals available for any sharp showers, and a warm jumper in case you need it in the desert.

I’m a solo traveller – is this for me?

Yes. More than 85% of our expedition clients travel alone as part of our group. You’ll travel as part of the group, not an outsider.

Do you charge single supplements – I can’t see them in your information?

Sometimes we cannot avoid it. We don’t believe that solo travellers should be penalised with extra charges.  It goes against our ethos, so unless totally unavoidable or astronomically expensive,  all costs are included in the expedition price. Please note that in many of our destinations, single rooms are simply not available due to the nature of the available tourism infrastructure.

In Jordan, you are the first to ride as part of a group here, so we have tried to keep initial costs down by using twin rooms. Our pricing is done on this basis. If you would prefer to have a single room wherever possible, we can do this for an extra £470 per person.

What kit do I need to bring?

We will provide you with an information pack after signing up to this trip, and this will detail any particular equipment we think either necessary or useful.

Is there a back-up vehicle?

Yes. We will travel with a 4×4 carrying filtered water and spares where necessary. We also plan to have a spare bike available, and for there to be space to carry a bike in case of injury or illness on the road.

How much are flights?

This is a moving feast! It depends on where you are travelling from and how you want to get there. Royal Jordanian fly direct to Amman from cities all over the world, and the price very much depends on this basis. From London it is very possible to get flights for around the £300 return mark with BA or RJ. Recently some of the EU’s budget operators have also started flying. There are flights to Amman from more then 10 European locations that connect with the UK and further afield. For these flights, it is possible to get a return flight to/from the UK (including baggage allowance) for around £160, maybe less. Again, we’ll send you an information pack containing all the information you need when you book your place.

We can book your flights for you through our trade ATOL partners – please just ask us for details.

What will the food be like?

Delicious. Do not come here expecting to go on a diet. We eat a lot of salads, flatbreads, hummus, roasted aubergines and tomatoes, roasted chicken, rice, baklava and halva, plus plenty of fruit. In general we think food is a core part of any cultural experience and there are a good number of local dishes to try on our route.

Will I have to share a room?

Yes, at times. There may be hotels and guest houses where we will have separate rooms and wherever possible we will arrange this, but there will also be times where we are staying at homestays or in yurts when there is no option but to share rooms. This is all part of the adventure, and a reason we love to travel here. It makes sense for light sleepers to bring good earplugs and eye-masks, in case of snorers or the host family waking early.

Do you perform proper risk management on your expeditions?

Yes. We are members of TRIP – the Travel Risk and Incident Prevention Group – and perform detailed country risk assessments prior to departure, in line with the ISO 31000 international standard for risk assessment. We also maintain close contact with the relevant Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice for countries we plan to visit, in addition to making use of the Australian Smart Traveller assessment tool, and the US State Department’s OSAC service. Beyond this, we have a full set of risk management and disaster contingency plans for each expedition and are expedition first aid trained by Crux Medical. For final back up we also use the services of Remote Medical Support that allows us to have a UK expedition doctor on the end of a telephone line wherever we may be. And we always carry a satellite phone if there is any danger of being out of signal in the places we travel through. We really don’t mess around when it comes to safety.

I can’t do your dates but love the sound of your expedition – can you be flexible?

Yes. We offer set group dates for many of our expeditions, but we can organise and deliver bespoke expeditions to groups and individuals to suit your itinerary and budget. More information is available on our bespoke expeditions page. For this Jordanian motorcycle adventure, we have two departure dates in March 2019, and are planning more beyond. It is not sensible to travel by bike here in mid-summer, so we have deliberately organised our two departures to coincide with the peachiest weather.

Is it a guaranteed departure?

As with any new, pioneering itinerary we need to reach a minimum number of guests to make this viable. On the Jordan by Motorcycle expedition this is 5 people from a possible 8.  When you express interest in this expedition, we will send you a deposit invoice to hold your place. This is refundable according to our terms and conditions if we do not reach the minimum numbers. We recommend that you do not book your flights or other arrangements until we have communicated that the expedition is definitely departing as planned and will aim to do this in order to give you at least 3 months prior to the scheduled departure in which to make your travel arrangements.

Are the Bikes Insured?

The motorcycles are insured as per local law. Your own travel/personal insurance should cover you for riding a motorcycle of this size in Jordan.

Value for Money

We are very proud of the routes we design and the way in which we travel them. We don’t cut corners and we plan meticulously. We are a small company that treats every guest as our friend and you won’t find that kind of service in many places. 85% of our customers have re-booked to travel again with us and some of them come on a trip every year. We also do annual expedition and remote medicine training and pay for 24/7 remote medical assistance cover. We employ professional military-grade risk assessments and plan for every possible negative scenario whilst hoping that none ever come to pass. We take our obligations to you and your safety very seriously and this all does cost money. We think the price offered is keen, but add the extra measures outlined above and we think the price represents great value for an experience you won’t find elsewhere.

Is this really for me?

Although this is an extremely enlivening way to spend two weeks of your life, it’s also potentially dangerous.

Travelling by motorbike is an inherently risky activity and to compound this, you will be travelling in a developing part of the world.

Not only could you be hurt, maimed or even killed but in the event of an accident it could take hours for the emergency services to reach you.

It will also be physically tiring.

Don’t even consider signing up for this adventure if you aren’t fully aware of the risks you are taking.

If you like your holidays to include foie gras, butlers and miles of quilted loo roll then please look elsewhere.

If however, you want a proper, unique and delightful experience that you’ll remember forever, then you are in luck!

Price:£2,850.00