There are many ways to travel between Egypt, Jordan, and Turkey. These Middle Eastern countries are practically neighbors, so you can visit all three of them with few to no problems. You can go the traditional route and move from Egypt to Jordan to Turkey in order to enjoy the different tourist attractions provided by these beautiful nations as you cross from border to border. You can also go about it in reverse... you can go from Turkey to Jordan to Egypt depending on which place you want to visit first. Just keep in mind that Jordan is always in between Egypt and Turkey if you want a straightforward trip. It's also a lot more expensive to hop from one place to another by flight, seeing as how near these three countries are with each other. You can also check out the other in-between nations lying around if you so choose... like Syria, Israel, and Lebanon.
Egypt to Jordan Travel Options
It usually doesn't need to be said, but before going to Jordan, you should enjoy your stay in Egypt first. Go camel trekking in the Sahara Desert, enjoy the warm shores of the Red Sea at Sharm el Sheikh, go visit the Sphinx at Giza, take pictures of the immortal monuments known as the Great Pyramids, and shop to your heart's content at Cairo's bazaars. When everything is said and done, your Egypt to Jordan journey is a relatively short one, so you should maximize your time in Egypt before crossing Jordan. Egypt in and of itself is a world-class travel destination, so don't treat it as a mere stopover of sorts.
- Air and Sea Travel Options: When traveling from Egypt to Jordan by air, it's wise to first check your flight information and have a good idea on the details regarding prices and availability, particularly flights between Cairo and Amman. You can go by sea from Egypt to Jordan by crossing the Aqaba Gulf between Jordan's Aqaba and Egypt's Nuweiba. There's a ferry there available that can help you cross from one country to another.
- Land Travel Options: If you instead want to cross from Egypt to Jordan on land, then you'll probably need to travel between Taba and Aqaba overland through Israel because Egypt and Jordan don't actually share a land border (Israel is sandwiched between the two nations). On that note, Eilat is a city in the southernmost part of Israel that serves as the shortest "bridge" between Egypt and Jordan. You're a taxi journey away from one border to another by taking the Eilat route (costs around $12), and it's only a twenty-minute ride to boot.
Taxis and buses run to and fro Jordan's Taba from most of Sinai's coastal resorts, which includes Sharm El Sheikh, Nuweiba, and Dahab. The border is filled with loitering Israeli taxi drivers ready to bring you into the city or the Arava that crosses with Jordan. The journey would mostly be a short and simple one were there no Israeli custom officials for you to deal with. Of course, once you reach Jordan, be sure to avail of its many Jordan travel packages
and Jordan travel tours
if you hadn't already.
Israeli Customs and How they Complicate Egypt to Jordan Land Travel
When entering or exiting Israel, you should brace yourself for some in-depth questioning from custom officials who are trying their best to gauge your level of threat to their nation. The problem isn't people crossing Israel to get to Jordan, because Jordan has had an open border with Israel since 1994. Instead, many Middle Eastern countries are "off-limits" to Israel aside from Jordan, so it's the fact that you're crossing from Egypt to Israel that's causing the commotion. If you've spent considerable time in the Arab world (with stamps on your passport to prove it), are a Muslim, or have Arabic ancestry, expect to wait a long time or undergo intense rounds of questioning from Israeli custom officials. The inconvenience caused by Israeli customs is probably the reason why people prefer air or water travel over land travel when going from Egypt to Jordan.
On that note, even if it's subject to frequent delays, it'll probably be faster to take a ferry from Nuweiba to Jordan than letting yourself get interrogated by custom officials. Israeli customs are also a headache for those who intend to travel to Syria or Lebanon in the future because those countries don't accept tourists who've traveled to Israel or have their passport stamped to indicate that they've been to Israel. Thankfully, it's possible to cross without getting your passport stamped by customs; just ask for it on a separate paper (you'll probably need to dance around the issue).Once everything is said and done and you're in the clear to go about your traveling business, the ancient city of Petra is your likeliest stop in your journey from Egypt to Jordan, if only for the fact that Petra has a lot to offer tourists in terms of historical attractions and whatnot.
Traveling from Jordan's Petra to Turkey
If the Jordan travel packages
you've availed of don't include a trip to Petra, then you've been gypped. If you've availed of combination Turkey and Jordan travel tours
, then you're in for a wild ride. While traveling from Egypt to Jordan is a straightforward affair on air and sea (and a needlessly complicated one on land), going from Jordan's Petra to Turkey's Istanbul and various other worthwhile Turkish destinations is an adventure in every sense of the word filled with many highlights, road trips, tourist attractions, and stopovers. Don't fret about the length of the trip, because when it comes to traveling from Jordan to Turkey via Petra, it's more about the journey than the destination.
Going from Turkey to Jordan to Egypt
- Petra to Madaba: The Red Rose City of Petra is a historic city engraved from rocky cliffs in Jordan's southern portion. It is home to horseback riding, the famous Street of Facades, the mysterious Royal Tombs, and the majestic Pharaoh's castle. It's also full of natural wonderlands as well as jeep safaris. After spending the night there, go to the Kerak via the Al Mujeb Mountains and end up in Madaba, which is home to the St. George Church and the famous mosaic map of the Holy Land as well as the Moses Memorial in Mount Nebo.
- Madaba to Amman: Go straight to Jordan's capital, the panoramic Amman, after spending time in Madaba. Amman is filled with tourist attractions such as the Amman Citadel, the Forum, the Jerash Hippodrome, Hadrian's Triumphal Arch, the Descapolis City of Jerash, Aljoun's famous Islamic Castle, the Roman Theatre, and the Folklore Museum. From there, fly from Amman to Istanbul in Turkey via a domestic flight. A nonstop flight from Amman to Istanbul takes about 2 hours and 20 minutes.
- Amman to Istanbul: Once you arrive at Istanbul, you'll be treated with many places to visit and explore, particularly the historical sights of Sultanahmet. You can avail of regular group tours to Saint Sophia, the Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome of Constantinople and Obelisk, and the Grand Bazaar and the Topkapi Palace (excluding the optional "Harem Room" extra entrance) as well. After the tour, rest at your hotel for the night, because your Turkey-related fun has just begun.
- Istanbul to Cappadocia: Cruise on the Bosphorous vessel in order to witness breathtaking views of the multitude of Istanbul's historical sights that line its shore. This particular tour includes visits to the renowned Spice Bazaar (open every day except Sundays). From there, take a flight or an overnight intercity bus to Cappadocia depending on your preference.
- Cappadocia to Pamukkale: Cappadocia is quite the Turkish delight, if you would pardon the pun. It's filled with places to visit, such as the Goreme Open-Air Museum, the pottery village of Avanos, the Monk's Valley (Pasabagi), the Devrent Valley, the Uchisar Natural Rock Castle, numerous churches and monasteries, the Derinkuyu Underground City, the Ihlara Valley, the Seline Valley's 13th century caravanserai and monastery, and so forth. You can take an overnight city bus or book a flight to Pamukkale when you've had your fill of Cappadocia sightseeing tours.
- Pamukkale to Kusadasi: Pamukkale is home to the travertens, otherwise known as the cotton castle or cotton cliffs. The Ruins of Hierapolis is also quite the sight to behold, so don't miss out on tours to that historical wonder. After you've spent some time in Pamukkale, head on straight to Kusadasi, which has the Ancient City of Ephesus as its main tourist attraction. Ephesus is filled with ancient sites and monuments such as the Grand Theatre and the Celsius Library. There are also many fountains and buildings to be found in this open-air museum of sorts. You shouldn't forget to visit the remains of the Artemis Temple as well as the House of the Virgin Mary.
On one hand, you can retrace the steps you've taken earlier for your travel from Egypt to Jordan to Turkey and go about your three-country trip that way. On the other hand, you also have the option of taking a different route in order to see new and exciting things from these Middle Eastern vacation destinations. While in Turkey, feel free to visit its many wonders just as you would Egypt had you started your cross-country trip there. As shown in the section above, there are many things to experience when vacationing at Turkey.
- Crossing Syria and Israel Passport Stamp Problems: From Turkey, cross to Syria. Take note of course that if you took the earlier land route to Israel in order to cross from Egypt to Jordan, then you may have problems crossing Syria because having an Israeli stamp on your passport will be problematic for all those who intend to travel to Syria or Lebanon. Those countries will not accept vacationers who've been to Israel the same way it's a problem to cross Israel if you've been around Middle Eastern countries aside from Jordan.
- From Damascus to Jordan: If you didn't take the land route from Egypt to Jordan mentioned earlier (or if you're starting off this trip by going to Turkey first and Egypt last instead of the other way around), you should head towards Damascus, travel a hundred kilometers south and go to Der'a, which has the only available border crossing into Jordan from Syria. You'll then end up in Ramtha, Jordan, which is about 88 kilometers north of Amman.
- Reaching Amman and the King Hussein Bridge: Once you reach Amman (and have partaken in its many wonders, such as the capital's historical sights of Sultanahmet), you have the option of going to Palestine or Israel through the King Hussein Bridge. It's important that you don't confuse the King Hussein Bridge with the Sheik Hussein Bridge, which is a totally different bridge. As a reminder, you can avoid getting your passport stamped in Israel by asking for the stamp on a separate paper.
- Heading to Petra to Get to Egypt: Once you cross the King Hussein Bridge, you can head on to Petra or, if you truly want an alternate route different from the one outlined earlier, you can also go to Jaresh or Umm Quais instead, which are also worthwhile and highly recommended tourist destinations. Finally, in order to bypass Israel customs and passport stamping (if you still want to take that Lebanon or Syria vacation), take a ferry from Aqaba, Jordan to Nuweiba, Egypt.