The Citadel

The Citadel, located 850 meters above sea level on top of a hill (Jabal Al Qala'a) in the center of Amman, offers a stunning 360-degree perspective of the city. In addition to the breathtaking views, the area is home to several architectural ruins from earlier civilizations that formerly called it home. Architectural traces of the Iron Age, Roman, Byzantine, and Umayyad eras can be seen in the ruins.

Things to do at The Citadel:

You can enter the amazing Neolithic complex of ruins through the colonnaded entry, where you will find the inner sanctum. From there, you can continue to stand by the massive stones on the cliff edge, where there once was a staircase, and take in the expansive views over the city.

Explore the courtyards of history: The Umayyad Palace, said to have been constructed in the ninth century, is the most spectacular and best-preserved of the complex's structures. Enter the domed audience hall after passing through the courtyard and the broad colonnaded street. The governor's mansion, which has a throne room, is located within the royal complex.

Get down a few feet: The Umayyad Cistern, which provided water to the neighborhood, is located near the palace. About 250,000 gallons (950,000 liters) of rainwater originally resided in the cistern. To gain a feel of its depth, descend the flight of stairs that runs along the cistern wall.

Stroll around the gallery: The National Archeological Museum, which is also located in the complex, houses an astonishing collection of antiquities, such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, a 6,000-year-old skull, and the Ain Ghazal statues, some of the earliest sculptures ever discovered. The Byzantine Basilica is located south of the museum; cross between the columns that line the nave's two sides and look over the crest to spot the remnants of the Roman Temple of Hercules.

Amman's downtown is a 20-minute stroll from the citadel. Taxis are the best mode of transportation to use. Be aware that the trail is rocky and steep if you choose to trek to the fortress. The Citadel is definitely worth the visit even if you aren’t into history. The location has a cute little café/supermarket where you can sit down, relax, and enjoy the view of Amman as well as the unique atmosphere it brings with it; from the mix of tourists and locals to tourists basking in the history and kids playing football or flying their kites. If the beautiful view of Amman wasn’t enough to motivate you to go, it is also located just a short distance (downhill – if you needed extra motivation) from the Roman Amphitheatre (another place worth visiting) and the Husseini Mosque (also worth a visit).

You could also take a picnic along with you to enjoy while sitting amongst the ruins, basking

in the sun, and enjoying the view and fresh mountain breeze.

  • imageDuration Required
    4 hours

Address of The Citadel

Opening & Closing time of The Citadel

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