UNRWA Headquarters and the Jordan Field Office in Amman are located in Bayader Wadi Seer.
Location and geography
Jordan has a population of 6.1 million. It is bordered by Syria to the north, Iraq to the north-east, Saudi Arabia to the east and south, as well as the West Bank and Israel to the west. The dominant topographic region is the Red Sea-Jordan Rift Valley which is a branch of the Great African Rift Valley system. The Dead Sea lowland in the west forms the edge of the plateau region, with barren desert plains located in the eastern and southern areas. The country’s principal river is the Jordan.
Jordan has a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and cool, damp winters. August is the hottest month and January the coolest. Average annual rainfall is 300mm, and average temperature in Amman ranges are from 4 to 12 degrees Celsius in January, to 18 to 32 degrees Celsius in August.
The principal ethnic majority are the Jordanians of Bedouin Arab origin. Palestinian Arabs comprise over 40 per cent of the population, while Arabs as a whole constitute 98 per cent of the population. Other ethnic minorities include the Circassians, Armenians, and Kurds. The people of Jordan are welcoming and warm to visitors.
The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is a constitutional monarchy. Amman is the capital of Jordan.
The official religion of Jordan is Islam. 93 per cent of the population is Sunni Muslim, while Christians account for 5 per cent.
The official language is Arabic while the people speak a dialect which is common to Syria, Lebanon and areas of Iraq. English is also widely understood.
The official currency is the Jordanian Dinar (JD) divided into 1,000 Fils.
Jordan time is GMT +2.
Jordan has quite an advanced healthcare system, although services are highly concentrated in Amman. Many medical professionals available in Amman are licensed and/or trained abroad and return to Jordan to set up their own medical practice. Doctors are proficient in English.
Jordan offers a wide variety of international primary and secondary education options including the US, British and French systems, as well as bilingual Arabic-English domestic programmes.
A wide range of housing options exist in Amman. Luxurious private villas as well as large to small apartments are available, either furnished or unfurnished. Generally, apartments are found through agents, personal reference or strolling through desired neighbourhoods looking for “for rent” signs.
Jordan residents use cars to travel within Amman, and between the capital and neighbouring cities. Taxis are inexpensive and readily available. Buses operate within Amman and between Amman, the Dead Sea resorts, Aqaba and Wadi Rum.
Several international airlines offer daily services between North America, Europe, Middle Eastern countries and the Far East. Amman’s Queen Alia International Airport is 40 minutes from downtown Amman.
Living in Amman
Modern grocery shopping centres, full service malls and movie theatres are readily accessible. There are numerous fitness centres and several clubs that offer gyms, swimming, playgrounds and other amenities.
Dead Sea and Aqaba hotels offer sophisticated resort holidays within easy driving distance of Amman. The historic sites of Petra, Jerash, Madaba and the desert castles are readily accessible and offer a unique insight into the rich history of the region. For the more adventurous traveller, hiking, cycling or rock climbing are available in the breathtaking Wadi Rum Desert, the wadis around the Dead Sea, the Eastern Desert or the northern wildlife reserves.
Maps of Jordan - A large number of Jordan maps including city maps.
Lonely Planet - Destination Jordan - information on events, attractions, activities, and transportation for the independent traveller.
Jordan Times - English-language daily newspaper produced in Amman.