Petra is enormous, and there is so much beauty to see. You can easily explore the entire Petra in one day. However, be prepared to walk for about 11 hours, and you’ll likely feel exhausted by the time you return to your hotel. Therefore, our advice is to allocate two days to fully enjoy Petra at a relaxed pace. Starting your day early will allow you to return before the peak heat. If you have two days, you can follow the suggested two-day itinerary below.
Tip: Use the maps.me app for offline navigation. Pin all the places you plan to visit in advance and use the app for guidance at each junction. Providing detailed walking instructions here would be confusing due to the numerous paths and intersections within Petra.
Day 1 in Petra (blue itinerary)
After entering through the main gate, you’ll have a short walk to the entrance of the Siq. The Siq is a narrow gorge that stretches for approximately 1.2 kilometers (0.75 miles). It’s a beautiful entrance that eventually leads to the Treasury, the iconic building you’ve seen in countless pictures. After exploring the Treasury, follow the route toward the theater. Just before reaching the theater, you’ll notice a staircase on your left with a sign indicating the “High Place of Sacrifice Trail.” This trail offers breathtaking views of Petra and involves a moderate climb. Refer to this article for a detailed description of the route to the viewpoint, which provides a spectacular perspective of the Treasury. Remember to bring some Jordanian tea to enjoy with the view. Afterward, retrace your steps briefly and then take the turn toward the Garden Temple. Continue along the designated route, and eventually, you’ll make a right turn to rejoin the main trail. Pass by the Royal Tombs and the theater as you make your way back to the main entrance.
Duration: Approximately 6 hours
Highlights: The Siq, the Treasury, High Place of Sacrifice Trail, Viewpoint of the Treasury, Garden Temple, the theater, and the Royal Tombs.
Day 2 in Petra (orange itinerary)
From the entrance, the Monastery is the furthest attraction within Petra. It’s approximately 6.5 kilometers (4 miles) away from the entrance, and you’ll need to conquer about 850 steps during the climb. While you can walk all the way through Petra, it would mean retracing your steps, missing out on new sights. A better option is to take the “backdoor” or the alternate entrance, which allows you to enjoy a scenic walk to the Monastery without climbing the 850 steps. The starting point is Little Petra, and transportation is included in your Petra ticket. Buses are available near the regular entrance of Petra to take you to Little Petra. If you haven’t visited Little Petra yet, it’s worth exploring. You’ll find various structures and a nice viewpoint. From there, it’s a 1.5 to 2-hour walk to the Monastery, following well-marked trails. After the backdoor trail and the Monastery, you’ll return via the Great Temple, following the main trail back to the main entrance.
Highlights: Backdoor trail, the Monastery, Great Temple
Duration: Approximately 5 hours
Extra Tips for Petra
Also, read our article with 15 essential tips for visiting Petra to make the most out of your visit to Petra.
Best Places to Stay in Petra
One of the best affordable hotels is Nomads Hotel. From the large rooftop terrace, you’ll have an amazing view, and it’s a delightful place to relax after visiting Petra. You’ll stay in a modern room, and there’s a nice communal area with a foosball and air hockey table. The location is perfect as it’s just a 10-minute walk from the entrance of Petra. If you’re looking for a unique accommodation, Infinity Lodge is highly recommended. You’ll stay in a charming room, and they serve delicious food for both breakfast and dinner, so you don’t have to leave. It’s only a few minutes’ drive to the parking lot at the entrance of Petra. Both hotels are located at a higher elevation, providing a fantastic view of Wadi Musa and the surrounding mountains.