How to Get from Aqaba to Wadi Rum, Jordan’s Desert

Many travellers arrive into Aqaba thanks to the ever-increasing number of low-cost flights into Jordan’s Red Sea region. Whether it is to visit Jordan’s Golden Triangle (Aqaba-Petra-Wadi Rum), or as the start of week-long itinerary in Jordan there are several ways to get from Aqaba to Wadi Rum to enjoy the stunning desert and enjoy a Bedouin camp! These camps come in all shpaes and sizes and budgets, from traditional tents to luxury camps.

Thanks to Aqaba’s proximity to Wadi Rum (just a 1 hour drive away) it is possible to leave the resort town and see one of Jordan’s top sights in just a day trip if you are based in Aqaba. When you are finished this guide, check out other day trips from Aqaba.

How to Get from Aqaba to Wadi Rum

Bus From Aqaba to Wadi Rum

JETT Bus offers daily service by bus from Aqaba to Wadi Rum. The Aqaba Petra bus schedule changes from time to time, and I find the JETT website quite difficult to navigate. Your best bet is to physically visit the bus station to book your tickets one day in advance. If you do want to see their posted schedule, you can see it here

According to the poster below a round trip ticket from Aqaba to Wadi Rum to Aqaba with JETT is 18JD. Ensure you have the cash to pay for your tickets. This poster is outside the JETT Bus station in Aqaba.

A one way trip on the JETT bus from Aqaba to Wadi Rum is 12JD.

bus aqaba petra | buses from aqaba to petra with prices
This poster was outside the JETT Bus Station in March 2019 (Next to the Movenpick Hotel in Aqaba). While none of this information is online and it is likely subject to change if you plan on taking the bus from Aqaba to Wadi Rum you should check at the bus station a day in advance.

 Aqaba to Wadi Rum by Rental Car

It is quite easy to rent a car in Aqaba and drive to Wadi Rum. It takes about 1 hour to drive to the Visitors Center and there is free parking on arrival. The cost to visit Wadi Rum protected area is JD5 and payable on arrival. If you have a Jordan Pass, the cost to enter Wadi Rum is included in your pass. Even if you are going to Al Diseh village for your accomodation, when you get to the turnoff to Diseh (by the police check point) make sure you check in at the visitors center first.

When you arrive you can book at 4×4 Jeep Tour inside the visitors center. There is almost always driver’s waiting in the parking lot for guests who have not made advance reservations. You can also arrange this with your accomodations on arrival. They can arrange sunset tours, or sunrise tours etc.

Unless you have arranged a Jeep tour with lunch, pack yourself a lunch or buy something before turning off the highway towards Rum. There is very little in Rum Village or the Visitors Center.

Consider getting a local Jordan Sim Card so you have GPS, while there are signs on the highway to Wadi Rum, if you plan on doing more driving or continuing on to Petra, you will want to be able to find your hotel in the winding streets of Wadi Musa.


 Aqaba to Wadi Rum Day Tour

If you do not want to worry about getting a car and driving, there are day tours from Aqaba to Wadi Rum. A local operator can take care of the logistics of picking you up from your hotel, arranging lunch and a jeep tour and bringing you back to you your Aqaba hotel at the end of the day. With a day tour, you do not need to worry about arranging a tour with a local Bedouin, just relax and enjoy and everything will be taken care of for you.

Check Out these Day Tours from Aqaba to Wadi Rum

Viator: One Day Aqaba to Wadi Rum

This 6 hour private tour hits all of the highlights of a visit to Wadi Rum including a 2 hour Jeep tour, enjoying sweet bedouin tea with locals and the option to add a camel ride before you bid farewell to this beautiful part of the world.

Viator: One Day 8 hours Aqaba to Wadi Rum

This 8 hour private tour offers a longer 4×4 ride including visiting some of the rock bridges. It also includes lunch at a Bedouin camp. It has great reviews and you are sure to enjoy the desert landscape as you spend an epic day visiting this UNESCO site in Jordan

Get Your Guide: Aqaba to Wadi Rum Tour

Travel by private vehicle to Wadi Rum where you will transfer to a 4×4 Jeep to experience the dramatic landscape of Wadi Rum. This is a quicker day and does not include lunch.

Aqaba to Wadi Rum Private Tours Tipping Guide:

Tips are not included in any of these tours. It is suggested to tip if you were happy with your service. Most drivers and guides in Jordan are very polite and will not hassle you for tips (unlike some other countries). This is a guide for tipping for a private day tour from Aqaba:

Driver JD10 carload (USD15)

Local Bedouin Guide and Driver in Wadi Rum JD5 carload (USD7)

Lunch 1 JD/person (USD1.50)

Aqaba to Wadi Rum Taxi

Taking a taxi from Aqaba to Wadi Rum is the no-hassle way to get there. It will cost around JD40. Ensure you negotiate the rate before you get in. You can also arrange a two-way taxi and they will wait for you and take you back to Aqaba.

Best Way to Get from Aqaba to Wadi Rum

The best way to get from Aqaba to Wadi Rum depends on your travel style, and your itinerary. If you are on a shoestring budget, JETT but at JD12 one way is the cheapest option.

If you are a couple or a family then a rental car might be cheaper than the bus, or at least more convenient. You can leave Aqaba when you like and after Wadi Rum, you can continue to Petra, Feynan or Amman.  Most of the driving is highway driving and self-driving is a great way to see the country.

If you are not comfortable driving, then a one way or round trip taxi is an option if you are not able to take the JETT bus.

If you want someone else to take care of all of the logistics, then booking a guided tour is the best way to see but Jordan as a whole. The guides in Jordan are extremely knowledgeable and they provide so many insights that you cannot read from a guide book. There are several local companies that can arrange a private tour based on your desired itinerary or even provide transportation for you from Aqaba to Petra and back.

If you think you want to book a tour, check out my post on choosing the right Jordan tour for you.

Overwhelmed with Planning a trip to Jordan?

Want to skip all of the planning and access my detailed Jordan Itinerary and Guide? I have been to Jordan several times and after being asked again and again for suggestions, not only did I build this website but I created an interactive PDF guide to help you plan the best trip to Jordan! It includes an interactive map, multiple itineraries for up to 10 days and as little as three days and plenty of practical information about renting a car and driving in Jordan. Get the guide by clicking the button below. 

Step into Jordan Guide and Itinerary Preview of Cover

More Jordan Travel Resources

In order to help make your visit to Jordan as memorable as possible, I have created a number of resources from planning guides to local eats.

If you have just begun the planning, check out 101 Things to do in Jordan to give you some inspiration on the places you want to make sure you have time to see.

While in Aqaba, check out their best restaurants, best day trips from Aqaba, getting from Aqaba to Petra, getting from Aqaba to the Dead Sea and our Aqaba guide.

Aqaba To Wadi Rum Desert Camps