Petra to Wadi Rum – Your Transport Options Explained

Sitting on the east bank of River Jordan is the semi-arid country of Jordan. It is famous for its ancient monuments, beach resorts, unique rock formations and canyons in the deserts.

Road-tripping from the ancient city of Petra to the Wadi Rum desert is a must if you want to make the most of your trip by seeing the two greatest highlights of southern Jordan!  

FTME Petra to Wadi Rum Cover

Petra and Wadi Rum are two of Jordan’s most famous tourist spots. And why shouldn’t they be? Petra is full of ancient architecture from as early as 300 BC, while Wadi Rum is a sandstone and granite valley in southern Jordan. Both destinations hold a lot of significance and are known as marvels of nature and history. 

Therefore, if you’re planning a trip to Wadi Rum from Petra while touring Jordan, here’s everything you should know about travelling between these two sites. 

view on the journey Kings Highway to Wadi Musa, petra
Stunning views of the Great Rift Valley en route between Petra and Wadi Rum in southern Jordan

Distance From Petra to Wadi Rum  

The distance from Petra to Wadi Rum is approximately 114.2 km, and it takes almost 1.5 to 2 hours to get there by road. However, the time can increase depending on your mode of transport and driving conditions to Wadi Rum. 

The journey between the two cities is mainly through the desert along the King’s Highway and Desert Highway.  

With that sorted, let’s tell you about the various ways you can get to Wadi Rum from Petra. 

Petra to Wadi Rum Transport Options

Petra to Wadi Rum by Taxi  

One of the cheapest and most convenient ways to get to Wadi Rum from Petra is by taxi. It takes under 2 hours to reach your destination in Wadi Rum and costs anywhere between 40 to 50 JD.  

You can ask your hotel in Petra to arrange a taxi to Wadi Rum or flag one down from outside the Petra Visitor Centre and Museum. However, before hiring a taxi from the roads of Wadi Musa, ensure they are properly licensed.

Also, coordinate with your camp at Wadi Rum about the drop-off point, as many camps require a 4WD to take you from the Wadi Rum Visitor Center to the desert camp, or your pick-up point may be arranged for Rum Village.

Petra to Wadi Rum by Hiring a Private Driver  

If you’re new in Jordan and want to travel stress-free from Wadi Rum to Petra, we recommend hiring a private driver. Although this option is the most expensive, around 70 JD on average, it is quite convenient and smooth. Plus, you’ll get a clean and reliable car to take you between cities, with a driver familiar with the route and places to see.  

The upside of hiring a private driver is that you can easily and comfortably travel from Petra to Wadi Rum, visit the places you want to see, and then return to Petra in the same car. It rids you of the hassle of hiring a taxi for every leg of your trip (and a great arrangement, particularly if you’re travelling with car seats).

FTME - Petra to Wadi Rum by Hiring a Private Driver  
Once you arrive in Wadi Rum, your Bedouin hosts will transfer you to a 4WD for your desert adventure!

Petra to Wadi Rum by Rental Car 

If you love road-tripping and stopping at different spots to take amazing pictures, renting a car is the best option for you to travel to Wadi Rum from Petra. It costs around 30 to 40 JD per day if you rent a family-sized car; however, the cost might go up a bit if you rent an SUV or a larger vehicle. Add to this the cost of petrol.  

Note you will need to have picked up your rental car in either Amman or Aqaba. The town adjacent to Petra, Wadi Musa, is not large, nor is Rum Village, the gateway to Wadi Rum. 

Once you reach Wadi Rum, you’ll have to park your vehicle at the visitor centre, where a guide will escort you to your camp in a 4×4 jeep. But if you’re staying at a high-end camp outside the Wadi Rum Protected Area, you can drive your rental car directly to your accommodation. Your guides will escort you from there into the reserve for day trips. 

  • Self-Driving in Jordan? Make sure you check out our Jordan driving tips before you set out. We cover everything from rental car expectations to the official and unofficial road rules in Jordan.

Petra to Wadi Rum by Bus  

If you’re looking for a cost-effective option to get to Wadi Rum from Petra, you can travel by bus. There are two bus options from Petra to Wadi Rum: The local bus and the JETT bus. 

The local tourist bus leaves daily at 6 am. You’ll have to ask your hotel to book a seat in advance as it gets full pretty quickly. It costs around 10 JD per person and takes 3 hours to reach Wadi Rum.  

A Jett bus in Jordan is an efficient way of traveling around the country at minimal cost

You’ll have to reach the JETT Bus Station in front of the Petra Tourist Center to travel via JETT Bus. The bus leaves at 5:00 pm daily, costing around 15 JD per person. Going by bus is ideal if you’re travelling alone or with a friend. With groups of three plus, it starts to make sense to take a taxi or private driver.   

Petra to Wadi Rum via Tour Group 

If you want to avoid the hassle of renting a car, taxi, or private driver, you can always book a tour group.

However, most tour groups originate from Amman or Aqaba and include day trips to Petra, Wadi Rum, and other nearby sites. Therefore, you won’t find many tour groups that only service Wadi Rum from Petra; you will be better joining a tour from Amman or Aqaba that covers both attractions.

Tour groups cost around 150 JD or more and include transportation, accommodation, a tour guide, and meals.  

FTME - Photo of a woman in Petra

Petra to Wadi Rum Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 

Q. Can you do Petra and Wadi Rum in one day? 

The distance between Petra and Wadi Rum is around 2 hours; therefore, you can easily cover both sites in one day. In fact, it will take around 8 hours to travel to Wadi Rum from Petra, visit all the places and return to your hotel in Petra. Do be aware though, you’ll miss out on the unique experience of camping in the Wadi Rum desert. 

Q. How many nights do we need to spend in Wadi Rum? 

Most people recommend staying for 1 or 2 nights in Wadi Rum; however, just one night is enough to experience the desert and stay in a Bedouin camp. 

Q. What is the best time to visit Petra and Wadi Rum? 

The best time to visit Wadi Rum and Petra is in spring and autumn. The summers can be too hot, and the winters are too chilly for most, leaving us with pleasant weather in the spring and autumn to enjoy camping in the desert. 

FTME - Extreme safari vehicle in Wadi Rum desert, Jordan

When planning a vacation to Jordan, visiting both Petra AND Wadi Rum is a must. They’re the most famous tourist sites, offering an amazing Bedouin camping experience in the desert and sightseeing of unique rock formations and canyons that make up The Lost City. 

You may also find these Jordan travel planning guides helpful:

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Family Travel Middle East
Family Travel Middle East

The Family Travel in the Middle East team of travel writers are all parents based in the Middle East, sharing first hand experiences and reviews from across the region to help you plan your next family adventure.

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