Although the most popular way to enter Petra is from the front gate and through the main trail, there are several methods in which you can enter and gain a different experience leading up to Al-Khazneh, or the Treasury. Here are three we’ve explored.
“Backdoor” Entrance to Petra
We recommend entering Petra through the unconventional, backwards path. In this method, you would either ride camels or hike from the Ammarin Village in “Little Petra,” or Siq al-Barid, before either getting off your camel and beginning your hike, or continuing it with a guide.
This option requires a little more outdoor adventure than the front entrance initially, but it also allows you to explore more aspects of the Nabataean history before first arriving at Ad-Deir, or the Monastery. Typically, the Monastery is the last stop for visitors, before they turn around and trek back through site. The Monastery is also an uphill climb from the entrance, so the “backdoor entrance” allows you to head downhill toward the rest of the facades, structures and monuments along the main trail.
Through this method, the Treasury is one of the final few stops, making it more of a “grand finale” before exiting the ancient city, rather than a first, and potentially only, stop. By taking this path, you’ll also miss most of the early rush of visitors at the Treasury.
Classic Front Entrance
This is the most popular way to enter Petra. After passing through the entry gate, you’ll pass by a few monuments and structures before stopping at the Treasury. Then, some visitors will begin to turn around and head back to the entrance, while others begin making the uphill trek toward the Monastery.
Through this method, you venture away from the beaten path at the start of As Siq, the gorge along the main trail that leads visitors to the Treasury. By veering away from the main trail and walking through a canal that was built by the Nabataeans, you can explore the Royal Tombs before heading back toward the Street of Facades and the Treasury. This option is a great way to spend a second day at Petra making new discoveries after you’ve already visited the site through one of the other two options.
As you make the determination for the best method for you and your group, let us know which method(s) you prefer at engagingcultures.com.