From the Nymphaeum, the short stroll to the King Hussein Mosque bustles with pedestrians, juice stands and vendors. The area around the King Hussein Mosque, also known as al-Husseini Mosque, is the heart of modern downtown Amman. The Ottoman-style mosque was rebuilt in 1924 on the site of an ancient mosque, probably also the site of the cathedral of Philadelphia. Between the al-Husseini Mosque and the Citadel is Amman’s famous gold souq, which features row after row of glittering gold treasures. During its long history, Amman has been inhabited by several civilizations. The first civilization on record is during the Neolithic period, around 8500 BC, when archaeological discoveries in 'Ain Ghazal, located in eastern Amman, showed evidence of not only a settled life but also the growth of artistic work, which suggests that a well-developed civilization inhabited the city at that time. In the 13th century BC Amman was called Rabbath Ammon or Rabat Amon by the Ammonites. The theatre was built during the reign of Antonius Pius (138-161 CE). The large and steeply raked structure could seat about 6,000 people: built into the hillside, it was oriented north to keep the sun off the spectators.It was divided into three horizontal sections (diazomata). Side entrances (paradoi) existed at ground level, one leading to the orchestra and the other to the stage. Rooms behind these entrances now house the Jordanian Museum of Popular Traditions on the one side, and the Amman Folklore Museum on the other side. The highest section of seats in a theatre was (and still is) called "The Gods". Although far from the stage, even there the sightlines are excellent, and the actors could be clearly heard, owing to the steepness of the cavea. (169-177 AD), the large and steeply raked theatre could seat about 6,000 people. It is built into the hillside, and oriented north to keep the sun off the spectators. In this photo, the orchestra and stage are viewed from the first diazoma (horizontal division) of the cavea.
The theatre was built during the reign of Antonius Pius (138-161 CE). The large and steeply raked structure could seat about 6,000 people: built into the hillside, it was oriented north to keep the sun off the spectators. The Hill of the Citadel (Jabal al-Qal'a) in the middle of Amman was occupied as early as the Neolithic period, and fortified during the Bronze Age (1800 BC). The ruins on the hill today are Roman through early Islamic. The name "Amman" comes from "Rabbath Ammon," or "Great City of the Ammonites," who settled in the region some time after 1200 BC. The Bible records that King David captured the city in the early 10th century BC; Uriah the Hittite, husband of King David's paramour Bathsheba, was killed here after the king ordered him to the front line of battle. There are numerous universities one can study in. Irbid, Madaba, and Aqaba also hold many educational institutes for foreigners. ordan's universities are world-renowned and respected for their hospitality and methods of instruction.
The Islamic headscarf is optional, there is no legal obligation to wear it and many women do not. In more affluent areas such as West Amman women often dress in Western clothing. Western women are advised to dress modestly. Long skirts pants and shirts with sleeves past the elbows will attract less unwanted attention for female travelers. Modest clothing is especially important at religious sites. In more conservative parts of the city such as East Amman, women are advised to heed the advice to wear modest clothing more strongly so as to not offend local sensibilities. It is highly advisable to see the sunset from the view point near the Citadel. But pay also your attention to the time of the muezzin call. If you listen to it from the view point, where the whole city lies before you, you get the unforgettable acoustic impression. Yellow and grey taxis are readily available and can be easily found anywhere in Amman. Taxis for Amman will have a green logo on the driver and passenger doors. The grey ones have an advertisement on top of the car. Resist hailing cabs with another color logo; these cabs are based in other cities and it is illegal for them to pick up fares in Amman. Taxis in Amman are required by law to use meters and most drivers will reset the meter as soon as a fare is picked up. Most trips within Amman should be under JD5. Taxis are not required to use meters after midnight and drivers often expect double the normal fare for late night trips.
Abu Darweesh Mosque. On top of Jebel al-Ashrafiyeh' is the striking Abu Darwish Mosque, built in 1961 with unmistakable alternating layers of black and white stone. Non-Muslims are generally not permitted inside, but the views on the way up are good. Take service taxi 25 or 26 from Italian St in Downtown to the mosque, or charter a taxi. It's a very long and steep climb southeast of Downtown if you decide to walk. If there are two things Amman is good at though it’s food and shisha (the Arabian water pipe also known as a hookah, nargila, or hubbly bubbly). There are plenty of cafés serving up decent local cuisine and Arabian ambience. The “Shmeisani” district has an entire street of restaurants and shisha cafes and proves to be a comfortable place for a solitary traveller (man or woman) to kick back with a bit of munch, a water pipe, and a good book. Smoking flavored or perfumed tobacco in a nargileh, the traditional water pipe or hubble-bubble (a shisha in Dubai), is an attraction in itself in most coffeehouses and many restaurants.
Today, West Amman is a lively, modern city. The eastern part of the city, where the majority of Amman's residents live, is predominantly the residential area of the working class and is much older than the west. While possessing few sites itself, Amman makes a comfortable base from which to explore the northwestern parts of the country. For a more exotic and traditional experience you can visit the old-downtown, also known as the ''Souq'', and take in the traditional sights and smells of the spice market, and shop for authentic souvenirs. In the commercial heart of the city, ultra-modern buildings, hotels, smart restaurants, art galleries and boutiques rub shoulders comfortably with traditional coffee shops and tiny artisans' workshops. Everywhere there is evidence of the city’s much older past. Typical Middle-Eastern breakfast of tea, hard-boiled egg, pita, is included in the mornings downstairs. There is a television in the lobby with couches where people hang out to chat and share stories. The hostel can help arrange tours of the Amman area, Jerash, or other excursions in Jordan -- since the whole country is so small almost any trip is a day trip from Amman. There are also about four cats that hang around the lobby. Smoking is allowed. The hostel has Wi-Fi and a computer available for a price.
Down the hill from ACOR and to the left a short distance are a shwarma stand, KFC, Popeye's, Pizza Hut, Chili House and a real McDonalds. These are legitimate franchise operations nearly up to US style, but with no pork products. Eating out is not an everyday activity in Jordan. Proper restaurants will be visited only for business affairs or family celebrations. Restaurant meals are later than normal American evening meal times. Fancier restaurants are typically open from 7:30 PM to midnight or 1 AM for dinner, with few people besides tourists appearing earlier than 9:30. A meal will cost JD 10 to JD 15 for two courses and beer or wine. The major hotels all have a variety of restaurants, but the best food is usually in non-hotel establishments. Reservations are rarely necessary, especially if you go early, but all restaurants will now and then be reserved for a party. A city built of white stone, Amman's growth has skyrocketed since it was made the capital of Trans-Jordan in the early 1920s, but especially after the 1948 and 1967 wars with Israel when hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees settled. Another wave arrived after the second Iraq war, with Iraqi refugees forming the majority of newcomers. Note that the Abdali bus station is now closed. The new bus station is called Tabarbour Bus Station and is in the North fringes of Amman. Most of the buses to the various cities ('Ajloun, Jerash, Irbid etc.) in Northern Jordan leave from here. To get there from downtown, take Serviis (A sedan car that works like a bus) #6 from Raghadan Tourist Service Station (Raghadan Al Seyaha) which is located right next to the Colosseum. The Trababour Bus Station is the last stop on the Serviis' route. There are numerous buses pulling into the city of Amman, most of which are operated by JETT (Jordan Express Tourist Transport). From the bus station, you can take a taxi to the city center. As a guide, it NEVER costs more than 2 JD on the meter from the bus station to most places in town, so either go by the meter, or pay a maximum of 2 JD.
Amman bars and clubs range from ultra-trendy and ultra-expensive stomping grounds for Amman's rich to sleazy flesh-markets frequented by desperate men. There's plenty of the latter. Roman Theatre in Amman. Jordan. Built during the reign of Marcus Aurelius (169-177 AD), the large and steeply raked theatre could seat about 6,000 people. It is built into the hillside, and oriented north to keep the sun off the spectators. In this photo, the orchestra and stage are viewed from the first diazoma (horizontal division) of the cavea.