Jordan: A day trip to Karak Castle

By Cubie - February 29, 2020

Getting to Al-Karak from Amman
As usual I flagged down a taxi to get to the bus station, this time to Al-wehdat Bus Station (South Bus Station) as Al-Karak is to the south of Amman. First I tried "Karak", the taxi driver didn't understand me. Then I tried "Kerak" but was unsuccessful too. Lastly I tried "Al-Karak" and he understood. Taxi trip this round was JOD 2.50 and bus fare was JOD 2.25.

Karak (or Kerak) Castle is a large Crusader castle in Al-Karak, a city in Jordan about 140km away from Amman. Al-Karak is between Amman and Wadi Musa so yes, I was making my way down south again.

Contrary to the bus to Jerash, I was the only foreigner in this one. The bus stopped at the foothill of where the castle is located. I wasn't aware of this when I got on the bus. Google map showed that it was the nearest stop to the castle, so I walked up to the front of the bus to ask. I was told that I needed to make the way up by myself.

I got off the bus and prepared to walk uphill to the castle but a local who got off together with me flagged down a van and told me that the van driver will send me to the castle. I thanked him and yep, I got on the van. This kind driver owns a dyeing shop and is a Palestinian. He drove me all the way up to right in front of the castle and refused any payment. I am grateful.

Karak Castle
Entrance fee JOD 2, included in Jordan Pass

Karak Castle was a Crusader stronghold and later, Mamluk fortress. There were some (very few)  boards to give some description of the history but not as good as the one in Jerash.

The castle stands 960 metres above sea level. Inside the castle includes a mosque, a church, kitchen and of course many, many rooms.

Castle Mosque
As I was roaming around, one of the staffs asked if I wanted to see the underground hall. I saw that there were 2 visitors just came out from there, so I followed him through a door. What I didn't expect was he closed the doors after though. I left a JOD 1 tip after the little detour.

Here are some pictures of Karak Castle.

Getting back to Amman
I walked down to the bus terminal on the hill, thinking that I could get a bus straight to Amman from there. In fact, when I asked the bus conductor, he just told me to get on. I only found out when I was told to get off at the foothill. I paid JOD 0.25 for this short bus trip.

Passing by Karak town on the way to the bus terminal
After that, a local man who got off the bus together with me gestured that I followed him. He showed me which bus to get back to Amman. Likewise the payment I was charged on my ride to Al-Karak, I paid JOD 2.25 for the return trip as well.

On arrival in Amman, I took a taxi (JOD 2) to Roman Theatre from the South Bus Station where the bus stopped.

Side note: Oh, hello 29th Feb. 

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