Wadi Rum

Wadi Rum

Wadi Rum was used by the Nabateans as part of their trading routes, but it is largely known today because of the work of Lawrence of Arabia with the tribes of the area in World War I. The movie Lawrence of Arabia was partly filmed here, as was Aladdin and the Star Wars films Rogue One and Rise of Skywalker.

Guest House Area

The paved road to Wadi Rum ends at the guest house, and from this point, only four-wheel-drive vehicles can travel. Visitors enjoy hiking, climbing, taking a jeep tour, and sleeping in Bedouin tents out in the desert. Among the area’s mountains is Jebel Rum, the highest mountain in Jordan with an elevation of 5,750 feet (1,752 m).

Jebel Khazali Crevice

“The dramatic combination of massive rocks and canyons, sandstones over basalt and granite weathered into weird shapes and colours surrounded by desert sands, rivals Petra in magnificence” (Rollin and Streetly 1998: 226).

Reference: Sue Rollin and Jane Streetly, Jordan, 2nd ed. (London: A&C Black, 1998).

Thamudic Inscriptions

Next to “Lawrence’s Well” are some inscriptions from the Thamudic tribes. In the Wadi Rum area, there are thousands of drawings and inscriptions from these people who lived here in the first centuries AD. Thamudic drawings include depictions of humans, large feet, ibex, camels, and hunters.

Natural Beauty

In 1999, a government proposal reported that the annual number of visitors to Wadi Rum was almost 100,000 and it expressed concern for the area’s landscape, ecosystem, and archaeological remains. To protect its natural beauty, steps have been taken to regulate the area’s tourist activities.

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Related Websites

See also the Spice Route. For historical images of desert travel and Bedouin, see Life in the Holy Land.

Wadi Rum (official website). The official site of Wadi Rum. Has lots of photos and information.

Wadi Rum (Ruth’s Jordan). A wealth of information about visiting Wadi Rum that provides pictures, maps, guide recommendations, and various other tips.

Wadi Rum (Angus McIntyre). A few good pictures taken in Wadi Rum. A second page of pictures is found here.

Wadi Rum History (Atlas Tours). Surveys the valley’s history from its beginning, covering the time of the Nabateans and ending with the time of T.E. Lawrence. Provides a couple of pictures.

Wadi Rum (Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan). Gives a brief description of both Aqaba and Wadi Rum. Scroll down to see the section on Wadi Rum. Sponsored by the Jordanian government.

Photo Gallery Index (Wadi Rum Rock Page). Features several photos taken by rock climbers in Wadi Rum. Provides close-ups of hard to reach features in the mountains.