Wadi Rum History:
Wadi Rum was formed over the course of millions of years of geological history. The enormous granite mountains & mesas were thrown hundreds of feet above sea level by ancient tectonic plate movement, and they were molded over many years by sandstorms and fierce winds. Floods smoothed down the wadis (valleys), leaving behind natural rock towers, arches, and bizarrely shaped rocks.
The Wadi Rum Desert has been inhabited since prehistoric times, according to archaeological evidence. The settlement there began at least as early as 4500 BC, according to a recently discovered site to the south. It was referred to as Wadi Iram between the eighth and sixth centuries BC. It is the perfect rest stop for caravans travelling between Arabia & the Levant because of its freshwater springs. The numerous civilisations & tribes that have inhabited the desert are shown by the more than 40,000 inscriptions & petroglyphs that have been discovered in Rum.These carvings attest to the presence of the Bedouin tribes of Ad, Thamud, Lihyan, & Main. Rum was previously home to the famous Nabateans, who left behind various structures when they left.
The locals acquired recognition when they fought alongside Lawrence of Arabia in 1917-18 against German and Turkish soldiers as part of the Arab revolution led by King Faisal. In his book “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom,” Lawrence himself made several allusions to Wadi Rum.
Almost all of Wadi Rum’s present inhabitants are Bedouin, who up until the recent rise in tourism lived a nomadic lifestyle and relied on their goat herds for food. The Jordanian government designated Wadi Rum as a protected area in 1998 after realising the growing significance of tourism in the region. The Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority now oversees the conservation efforts of a group of residents with the purpose of protecting the delicate desert landscape from escalating human pressure.
Must-see attractions at Wadi rum:
- Lawrence Spring
- Khazali Canyon
- Anfishiyyeh Inscriptions
- Barrah Canyon
- Burdah Rock Bridge
- Um Fruth Rock Bridge
- Seven Pillars of Wisdom
- Um Sabatah
How to reach Wadi Rum:
By Air: Amman has the closest airport.
By road: 1 to 3 hours from Petra, 2 to 3 hours from Aqaba, and 5 to 8 hours from Amman.
Best time to visit Wadi Rum:
March to May and September to November