If I tell you, “I was in a wonderful beach resort in Jordan!” would you look at me like I got my geography wrong? Or if you think of a “beach vacation” would you even think of Jordan?
When I thought of Jordan at first, beach was far from my mind (except the “beach” at the Dead Sea).
After our amazing time exploring the seemingly mystical wonder that is Petra, we moved to the south of the country to Aqaba – a Jordanian port city on the Red Sea’s Gulf of Aqaba is Jordan’s year-round aquatic playground with its balmy winter climate and idyllic setting. Aqaba is a top destination for scuba divers, with notable dive sites including the Yamanieh coral reef.
(The distance between Petra and Aqaba is roughly 166 km and travel time is approximately 2 hours and a half by car.)
We stayed at the Movenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay in Aqaba. The hotel is both modern and and comfortable and provides a good option for those who prefer to stay outside the bustle of cities whilst still having access to all the amenities.
Aqaba makes for a good stop-off point on an itinerary for some relaxation, as it is located close to both Wadi Rum and Petra.
It was dark when we arrived and we were dead tired from all the walking we did at Petra. Thankfully, the staff at reception was kind and forgiving and made our check in process smooth and fast and whisked us to our room immediately.
We had a room with a very smart, effective layout for families, with a big bed and two single beds in a partitioned section for the kids. Our room was facing the pool, a great view to wake up to every morning.
Breakfast was complimentary with international fares and live cooking stations for eggs, pancakes and waffles. Staff were attentive and very friendly. The all day dining restaurant serves lunch and dinner but we only had dinner once and the food was average for me. Many diners seem to be enjoying though so I must have been out of my usual appetite that night.
One of the hotel staff gave us a tour and took us to the hotel’s garden. The idea is to create a “fresh market” where guests can harvest for their own meal, healthy, organic and freshly picked ingredients. They just started it so it’s small for now but it looked promising. I like the concept.
We toured the property on our first morning there and it was very beautiful, well manicured, tidy grounds, with multiple pools, including a small heated pool so you can still enjoy in winter. I can imagine a lot of families with kids enjoying these amenities during warmer weather!
The hotel has direct access to the beach, too. For many, Jordan’s main attractions are its ancient historical sites yet, despite the mystical beauty of Petra or the out of this world charm of Wadi Rum, beauty can also be found along Jordan’s coasts. I believe Tala Bay in Aqaba has some of the most beautiful resort destinations in the Middle East.
That is the Red Sea by the way and those mountains in the horizon is Israel. It was cold in December but the view was so beautiful we couldn’t ignore it so we braved the cold winds and took a stroll here every after breakfast.
What a lovely place to stay, with all those pools and a beach resort where you can just chill and forget about time. Two days wasn’t enough so if you’re going to stay there, and now that you know that you can enjoy beach time in Jordan, make your stay longer than two days at the Movenpick Tala Bay!
We already miss the quiet mornings and our strolls at the beach. Hoping to be back when it’s warmer!
Why I recommend staying at Movenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay in Aqaba, Jordan:
- A great option for families, with a Kids Club and Family Rooms (and yummy Movenpick ice cream!)
- It has a great spa with hydrotherapy area – relieves those tired muscles! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
- The resort has a 150-metre long private beach
- An ideal place for divers, the resort has its own dive centre and offers a number of snorkelling and diving trips (we did not go to any snorkelling or diving trips)
- Located 15-minutes from Aqaba city centre, the resort is great for those who prefer to stay out of cities but stay in an accommodation with 5 star amenities
- The staff goes out of their way to assist so we feel welcomed and they made our stay more enjoyable
We were guests at the Movenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay however, all opinions are mine.
For Dubai residents with The Entertainer 2017 app: (As of this writing) there’s a voucher to buy one night and get one night free at Movenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay and 2 other Movenpick hotels in Jordan. Make use of it when you go!