Lying in the cradle of civilization, Um Qais resides in northern Jordan and is the greenest trail in the area. You can visit this spot to admire the remnants of ancestral civilisations, valleys and canyons that swathe the city in a replenishing aura. The land in this region is fertile and referred to as the ‘Bread Basket of Jordan’.
The grasslands and oak forests are filled with clusters of archaeological sites dating back to the time of Christ. The thermal springs and ancient olive trees here offer a splendid aura, and the Roman cities of Decapolis interspersed with local communities make for savouring moments. Also, cycling through this trail is quite easy and exploratory.
- The approximate time required to finish the Um Qais trail is 4 days.
- The trail is 80 km long.
Ajloun and Jerash
Ajloun and Jerash second the bucket list of favourite destinations in Jordan after Petra. The cycling trail leading to these ancient remnants is rigorous and rocky, thus great for adventure junkies. Jerash contains ruins as old as 6,500 years and is surrounded by dainty hillocks and wooded basins. It was conquered by General Pompey in 63 BC, and it now comes under the ten great Roman cities of Decapolis League.
During your cycling trail to Jerash, you can admire the chariot ruts located on Cardo, venerate the mosaics built mimicking those in Madaba and visit the Jerash Festival, where Roman chariot races take place. Ajloun Castle, on the other hand, is an epitome of the Islamic Ayyubid military architecture. The construction of Ajloun Castle was finished in three stages under the reigns of different rulers.
- The approximate time required to finish Ajloun and Jerash is two days.
- The trail is 50 km long.
Dead Sea, Mount Nebo and Madaba
This bicycle trail of the Dead Sea, Mount Nebo and Madaba Trail is the most renowned. Cycle along the Dead Sea with moderate difficulty. Next in the trail comes Mount Nebo, which is a 710 meters tall mountain, and the place where Moses resided during the last days of his life, overlooking the Promised Land he could never set foot on.
The trail is moderate in level, and not only bicycles but cars are also allowed atop the hill. However, trekking is the best resort to explore the religious history attached to the place. Madaba, on the other hand, has three primary cycling trails extending its exploratory premises:
- Madaba – Libb – Mukawir – Hammamat – Ma’in – Madaba cycling trail is 46 miles long.
- Madaba to Deep Sea cycling trail which is 30 miles long.
- The Dead Sea cycling trail is 18 miles long.
The Kerak Trail is a north to the south trail that covers the intriguing and historical sites in and around the Kerak Castle. The trail is 15 days long and traverses through the ancient and religious sites of Kerak. For most of the visitors, this is the most geographically enthusing trail with vibrant textures and encampments to the Dead Sea.
- The trail is 46 miles long.
- You can discover the canyons, Wadi Mujib Wadi al Tawahin and remnants of Magdalena on your trail.
One of the best trails to Petra begins from Shobak Castle. From Shobak Castle, the route leads northwest across a plateau to its edge. The overlooking view of yellow sand dunes and red mountains makes the journey all the more mesmerising. Most of the sections are laid out on a 4x4 jeep track with interspersed steep sections.
A small route takes to the Kings Highway descending into the town of Little Petra lying on the Heisha Road. Your trail continues on the Heisha Road, and then to Umm Sayhoun. After covering Wadi Musa en route, the trail ends at the town of Petra, which provides a clear view of the Qasr-Al-Bint.
- The approximate distance covered in the entire trail is 50 km.
- The difficulty level of the trail varies from moderate to difficult.
Petra to Wadi Rum comprises an eloquent scenery and dainty small towns. The trail heads south and uphill from Petra to the southern town of Rajiff. After covering a short section of the King’s Highway, you take right after encountering an old cemetery.
After this, the trail goes downhill. The next section comprises dirt-filled roads, tracks and countryside towns. After reaching Abbasiya, you will experience the quintessential middle-eastern scape of deserted lands and multiple sand dunes, after which the tracks go further downhill. After reaching the desert highway, Wadi Rum gradually appears with its grandeur of hillocks and mesmerizing orange sunset.
- Cycling distance of the total trail is 49 km.
- The total distance of the ascent is 325 meters, and the total descent is about 1925 meters.
Jordan Bike Trail: Um Qais to Aqaba
Covering the length of Jordan, the Um Qais to Aqaba trail combines physical exercise with eco-tourism, inter-cultural exploration and interaction. The entire trail is comprised of three sections – northern, central-southern, and takes 15 days to complete. However, for those who aren’t enthused by this two-week commitment can cover either of the aforementioned sections, which carry a length of 5 days each.
The northern section of this trail includes the most significant and venturesome ascents and descents out of the three sections. The valleys and canyons that await the arrival during the central region trail offer a series of breathtaking sights and thrilling activities.
- Those interested in the historic and religious sites of Jordan must entail the southern trail of the city.
- These rides aren’t intended to be for beginners and/ or amateurs. They require constant physical straining on rigorous terrains.