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Azraq Castle (Qasr al-Azraq) Tours

Azraq Castle (Qasr al-Azraq)
Located about an hour east of Amman, Azraq Castle (Qasr al-Azraq) is a desert fortress created by the Romans back in 300 AD, although the structure in its current form was built in 1237 by the Mamelukes. The exact location of Qasr al-Azraq (meaning Blue Castle) in the center of the Azraq Oasis was chosen strategically; this area is the only water source in over 7,000 square miles. One of Azraq Castle's striking features is its color – the local basalt gives it an atypical black hue, which is where it’s believed the fortress gets its name, as it can appear blueish at certain times. Flanking an expansive courtyard and mosque are long walls with inspiring towers, and the site’s huge door is a sight on its own; the structure is made completely of heavy stone (hinges included) and can be a challenge to open. The whole thing weighs three tons.

While the design is impressive, most visitors head to Azraq Castle to learn about Thomas Edward Lawrence (also known as Lawrence of Arabia) and Sherif Hussain bin Ali, who stayed in the fortress during the winter of 1917 when the Arab Revolt against the Turks went on. Lawrence wrote about staying at Azraq Castle in his book, Seven Pillars of Wisdom, and more can be learned from the movie, Lawrence of Arabia. Visitors to the fortress can see the room he stayed in here.

Practical Info

There are no set visiting hours for Azraq Castle, as Nader, the caretaker, is there to escort visitors inside as they arrive. The site doesn’t have much signage, so it’s worthwhile to hire Nader (a blood relative of someone who fought alongside Lawrence of Arabia) as a guide, which can be done for a small negotiable fee. There is also a restaurant at the site serving lunch and dinner.
Address: Qasr Azraq, Amman, Jordan
Hours: There are no set visiting hours.
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6 Tours and Activities to Experience Azraq Castle (Qasr al-Azraq)

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Daily Tour from Amman to The Desert CastlesDay Trips

Daily Tour from Amman to The Desert Castles

star-5
Discover Jordan’s rich history on this half-day tour to the Umayyad Desert. Visit these desert ‘castles’ that were once used as caravan stations, trade centers, outposts, and resort pavilions. Admire the beautiful Islamic art, mosaics, frescoes, and carvings that can be found inside and were inspired by Persian and Greco-Roman traditions. Spend about 45 minutes at each destination before heading back to Amman.
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$60.50
From  
$60.50
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  • 6 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Private Tour: Desert Castle Tour of Eastern Jordan from AmmanPrivate Sightseeing Tours

Private Tour: Desert Castle Tour of Eastern Jordan from Amman

star-4
Discover three of Jordan’s famous desert castles on this 4-hour private tour from Amman. With an informative private driver, learn about these fabled castles, built by Umayyad rulers during the 7th and 8th centuries as you visit each one in the desert plains of eastern Jordan. Explore UNESCO-listed Qusayr Amra, famous for its 8th-century frescoes of hedonistic scenes, before continuing to the atmospheric Qasr Kharana and Qasr al-Azraq castles, the latter used as a military base by TE Lawrence, known as ‘Lawrence of Arabia,’ during World War I.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$87.50
From  
$87.50
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Private Tour: Full-Day Islamic Desert Castles and Ajloun Castle Trip from AmmanPrivate Day Trips

Private Tour: Full-Day Islamic Desert Castles and Ajloun Castle Trip from Amman

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Look beyond Jordan’s most celebrated attractions to see some lesser-known historical treasures on this private Islamic desert castle day trip from Amman. Head east to Al-Azraq, a castle that ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ once used as a headquarters, and then explore the fresco-painted masterpiece of Amra and Kharaneh castles. Finish at Aljoun, a hilltop medieval fortress built to defend against the Crusaders. Your tour includes private transport, hotel pickup and drop-off, and entrance fees.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$131.25
From  
$131.25
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation

The Desert Castles Full Day Tour From Amman or MadabaCultural Tours

The Desert Castles Full Day Tour From Amman or Madaba

Jordan's Umayyad desert castles are beautiful examples of early Islamic art and architecture and stand testament to a fascinating era in the country's rich history. Take a private half-day tour and delve deep into the history of Jordan under the expertise of a professional and knowledgeable driver. The structures are called castles because of their imposing stature. The desert complexes once served various purposes as caravan stations, agriculture and trade centers, resort pavilions, and outposts that helped distant rulers forge ties with local Bedouins. Inside the castles, early Islamic art can be found. The fine mosaics, frescoes, stone and stucco carvings are inspired by the best in Persian and Greco-Roman traditions and reveal to us countless stories of the life as it was during the 8th Century. Spend around 30-45 minutes visiting each site.
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  • 5 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$70.00
From  
$70.00
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  • 5 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Half Day Tour - Desert Castles & Cave of the Seven SleepersHistorical & Heritage Tours

Half Day Tour - Desert Castles & Cave of the Seven Sleepers

Delve deep into Jordan’s history as you visit 3 of Jordan’s remarkable desert castles.These are beautiful examples of early-Islamic buildings scattered around the eastern desert. Their fine frescoes, mosaics & carvings, portray life during the 7th & 8th centuries. Called castles due to their imposing nature, however they served several purposes such as caravan stations, resort pavilions, trade & agriculture centres. They stand testament to a rich era in history; namely the flourishing beginnings of Islamic-Arab civilisations. Explore UNESCO-listed Qusayr Amra, known for its 8th-century frescoes of hedonistic scenes, Qasr al-Azraq, and Qasr al-Kharrana Visit the Caves of Seven Sleepers. The legend of the ‘seven sleepers’ involves seven Christian boys who were persecuted, then escaped to a cave and slept there for 309 years. Enrich your stay in Jordan and trek through the desert as you visit these castles. Get off the beaten track as you visit the Cave of the Seven Sleepers.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
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$60.00
From  
$60.00
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation

1-Day Desert Castle Private Tour from Dead SeaPrivate Day Trips

1-Day Desert Castle Private Tour from Dead Sea

Spend a full day immersed in the Islamic architecture and art of the Eastern Desert castles. With a private guide and driver, visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Qasr Amra, Qasr al-Asraq, and Qasr Kharana. Tours are available at each site (own expense). Entrance fees and round-trip transportation from Dead Sea area hotels are included.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$75.00
From  
$75.00
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation


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