If you are at all interested in aviation activities, one of your stops in Aqaba should definitely be the Royal Aero Sports Club, a curious non-profit organisation that was founded by King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein of Jordan after he managed to experience the delights of aero sport himself and saw that it would be a fine addition to Jordan’s tourism activities roster. The current president of the club is the Prince Hamzah, which holds up its original status as a “royal” club, although anyone is free to try out the activities the club is offering, provided you pay the fairly reasonable fees.
Experience flying at Royal Aero Sports Club
The Royal Aero Sports Club offers such activities as hot air ballooning, microlight flying, and ultralight flying (you have a choice here of either a Savannah or a Remos G3). Of these, perhaps the most popular among tourists is the hot air balloon option. The trip usually takes you over the gorgeous stretch of desert and dunes known as Wadi Rum, and the most common time for its commencement would be very early in the morning, in order to provide for the heat of Aqaba. In the early morning, the evening’s cool is still present, which makes the ride far more pleasant for passengers. Furthermore, the time permits the passengers to see the glorious sunrise on the desert’s horizon, which usually prompts a flurry of photographic activity from tourists. If you do decide to take the hot air balloon option, you may have to calculate double the time in allocation for your schedule, since a one-hour flight can often take two hours due to the drive towards and back from the lift-off and touchdown sites.
(Here is a little tip, by the way: do not fall asleep on the drive to the site. The drive itself is often through the most picturesque parts of Wadi Rum, so it would be a shame to miss such a ready opportunity for seeing the beauty of the desert. Provided there is already enough light during the drive, you should see some lovely vistas of the area, and you should get your camera ready if you want photos of the desert at its best.)
Children are allowed on the hot air balloon ride, but they have to be older than 5 years old. Things may get a bit more complicated when it comes to permissions for the microlight and ultralight flights. The Royal Aero Sports Club should be the one to arrange permission so that you can fly and will require certain documents such as your passport. Note that the club has a website that you can access to find out more about them at http://www.royalaerosports.com/site/. Another tip that might be of use to you here is to have your agent get in touch with them by phone or do it yourself if you are already in Jordan: trying to get in touch with the staff at the club through email may sometimes take a while. Look for their contact numbers and details on the provided site.