Headed to the Kingdom of Jordan and have some time to spend one day in Amman? You’re in the right place, as I happen to have the best Amman one day itinerary to guide you along your trip. Amman is perfect for a one day pit stop if you’re travelling around Jordan, and I’m here to show you how to make the most out of your 24 hours in Amman.

Chances are, if you’re arriving in Jordan, you’ll begin (and probably end) your trip in Amman, its capital city. Amman, the largest city in Jordan, is simply beautiful – it’s full of historical archaeological sites, culture, bustling souks, lovely locals, and to die for Middle Eastern food. 

Hopefully, your trip to Jordan will take you not just to Amman, but to Petra, Wadi Rum and the Dead Sea too, and if that’s the case, you should check out my other articles about Jordan, including my ultimate 10 Day Jordan Itinerary. 

Other Jordan travel guides you may like:

One day in Amman pin

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One Day in Amman City Tour

I’ve put together the below 1 day Amman itinerary for those who are happy to explore by foot (as I always am), but if you don’t have much time or you prefer a guided tour, I recommend this four hour city tour. It’ll cover all the main highlights and historical sites and save you time on navigating by yourself, which can be a little tricky at times. 

Find out more about the Amman City Tour here

What to see in Amman in one day

Wonder at the Amman Citadel 

Amman Citadel at sunset
Amman Citadel at sunset

Perched majestically on Citadel Hill, the Amman Citadel is the perfect place to kick off your day in the capital city of Jordan. This historical site is a wonderland of ancient ruins that whisper tales of the many civilizations that once called these hills home. 

Don’t forget to stop by the Temple of Hercules, it’s the Citadel’s star attraction and its weathered stones hold a certain charm that transports you right back to Roman times. 

Explore the Jordan Archaeological Museum

Once you’ve soaked in all the Citadel, head on down to the Jordan Archaeological Museum. Nestled within the Citadel premises (don’t worry, it’s walking distance), this museum is a treasure trove of artefacts dating back to prehistoric times. 

One of the highlights is the Ain Ghazal Statues, some of the oldest known statues in the history of human art. Wonder at the relics of the past and let the age-old pottery, jewellery, and sculptures tell their stories.

Relax at the Roman Theater

Roman amphitheater Amman Jordan
Roman amphitheater Amman Jordan

Just a short walk from the Citadel and you’ll find yourself at one of Amman’s most iconic landmarks – the Roman Amphitheater. This ancient amphitheater, built during the reign of Emperor Antoninus Pius in 138 AD, used to seat up to 6,000 people. 

Take a moment to sit and marvel at its grandeur. If you consider yourself a good singer, give a belt out and see how it sounds – it’s known for its excellent acoustics! If you don’t consider yourself a good singer, maybe sit this one out – nobody wants to be the person to tell you to sssh! 

We were treated to a really nice impromptu performance by a fellow tourist, whose beautiful tunes echoed throughout the theater. 

Explore the Jordanian Museum of Popular Traditions

Next up is the Jordanian Museum of Popular Traditions, located in the eastern hall of the Roman Theatre. This charming museum showcases various aspects of traditional Jordanian life, from clothing and jewellery to handicrafts and household items. 

I always enjoy getting immersed in local culture and traditions, seeing how life was back in the day, and this museum was perfect for that. 

The museum is in a beautiful historic building with stunning architecture, making it a must-visit for both history buffs and those who want to get that Instagram shot alike. 

Shop at a Souk

Teapots with tea for sale in the Souk in Amman
Teapots with tea for sale in the Souk in Amman

No visit to Amman is complete without experiencing a traditional souk (aka a Middle Eastern marketplace). It’s one of the best things to do there if you like to pick up some local souvenirs when you travel. 

Souk Jara takes place in downtown Amman each Friday evening during the summer months, and it’s a must-visit for anyone looking to get their hands on some unique souvenirs. You’ll find mostly handmade and artsy items here – think handmade soaps, bags, candles, etc. 

If you don’t happen to be in Amman on a Friday during the summer, I suggest heading to the Al Balad Souk, also in the downtown area for a (nice) sensory overload of sights, sounds and smells. 

Here you’ll find everything from spices and perfumes to traditional clothing, pottery and other souvenirs. I got a beautiful colourful wrap here and it’s been worn all over the world!

Don’t forget to haggle for prices – it’s all part of the experience and haggling is pretty much expected! 

Visit Grand Husseini Mosque

Grand Husseini Mosque Amman
Grand Husseini Mosque Amman

Another must-visit if you’ve got one day in Amman and you’re an architecture enthusiast is the Grand Husseini Mosque, one of Amman’s oldest mosques.

This beautiful Ottoman style mosque dates back to the early 1920s and was built by the late King Abdullah on the grounds on an ancient mosque originally built in 640AD.

You’ll only be able to visit inside the mosque if you’re Muslim, so for non-Muslims you’ll have to simply admire it from the outside.

Get Lost in the Bustling Streets of Downtown Amman

One of my favourite things to do in Amman was to simply wander the busy streets of downtown. 

There’s impressive street art and a ton of souvenir shops, sweet and pastry shops, restaurants, and cafes to explore. It’s a great place to people watch!

Downtown Amman is also the best place to find street food and traditional Jordanian sweets like knafeh or baklava  – you won’t be disappointed if you love trying local food when you travel! 

Get a picture at Rainbow Street

Umbrella Street in Amman Jordan
Umbrella Street in Amman Jordan

Rainbow Street is a popular and vibrant street right in the heart of Amman that’s perfect for snapping some Instagrammable pictures. 

It’s a lively area filled with trendy cafes, boutique shops, young locals and tourists alike. Be sure to to stop by for a quick photo op under the colourful umbrellas and decorations.

Sundowners at a Rooftop Terrace

After a long day of exploring the city, I recommend heading to one of Amman’s rooftop terraces to finish the night with some of the best views of the city. I recommend Copas Central for their delicious tapas and cocktails! It’s popular amongst locals and tourists and you’ll definitely get chatting to some friendly locals here. 

How many days do you need in Amman?

Is one day enough time to really explore Amman? One day in Amman is plenty time to see the top attractions. It’s not one of those cities you need a week to explore. If you’ve got two days, that just means you can take it a little slower. I wouldn’t recommend more than 3 days in Amman, unless you’re using it as a base to explore other parts of the country. 

Where to stay in Amman?

There are plenty of accommodation options in Amman, from budget-friendly hostels to more flashy hotels – it all depends on your budget and preference.

  • On a budget: The Carob Hostel and The Castle Star are the highest rated hostels in Amman. And if you don’t have much to spend on accommodation, you’ll be on track with either of these two. Starting at prices from $14-$16
  • Mid range:  If you’re looking for something a little more upmarket, try either the Ambassador, A Boutique Hotel or the Seas Hotel Amman. I like my comfort when I travel (no longer a hostel girl, so I usually go for mid-range hotels. Check out their reviews here
  • Luxury: Of course, if you want to splash out, you can’t go wrong with the Ritz Carlton or the Four Seasons, Amman. They’ll set you back a pretty penny, but given that Jordan is a pretty affordable country, you’ll save elsewhere. 

What’s the best way to get around Amman

You know I always say the best way to explore a new city is by foot, and Amman is no exception. However, if you do need to travel longer distances or can’t manage a full day of walking, there are other options available:

  • Taxi: Make sure the meter is running when you get into the taxi, or negotiate a price with taxi drivers before setting off
  • Uber or Careem: This is the easiest option in my opinion as it’s all done through an app and you can pay by card. Careem is my preferred app in the Middle East and it’s a little cheaper than Uber. 
  • Bus: I’ll be honest, I haven’t taken a bus in Amman, however it is an option and if you’re more adventurous and on a stricter budget than me, bus will be a great option for you.
  • Car: You can definitely  to get around. But if you tend to get stressed in traffic, I don’t recommend using a rental car. Let the locals navigate those crazy roads instead! 

Day trips from Amman

Wadi Rum Desert
Wadi Rum Desert

While Amman is a beautiful and bustling city, there are plenty of amazing places to see just outside its borders. Here are some of my top recommendations for day trips from Amman:

  • Jerash: This ancient Roman city is only an hour away from Amman and it’s definitely worth a visit. You can walk through the ruins and imagine what life was like during the peak of the Roman Empire. Book a trip to Jerash here. 
  • Dead Sea: Just an hour and a half drive from Amman, you can visit the famous Dead Sea and experience its buoyant waters first hand. Make sure to cover yourself in mud for some extra skin benefits – I swear it’s like having baby skin afterwards! 
  • Wadi Rum: If you’re feeling adventurous, take a day trip to Wadi Rum and explore the desert landscape made famous by the movie ‘Lawrence of Arabia’. The red colour of the sand is like nothing on earth – which is why so many movies set on Mars are filmed there!
  • Petra: Although it’s a bit further away (about 3 hours from Amman), Petra is definitely worth the trip. This ancient city carved into the rock face will leave you in awe and wonder all day. Check out this popular day trip from Amman to Petra

I hope this Amman itinerary is just what you’re looking for if you’re headed to the capital of Jordan. With this itinerary, you’ll be able to spend the entire day exploring without feeling too rushed off your feet. 

And if you’re headed on a longer road trip throughout Jordan, check out my 10 day Jordan travel guide.

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