Dana Nature Reserve, Jordan
At a Glance
Feynan Ecolodge is eco-friendly, using solar power to provide any electricity
Stargazing can be done from the roof terrace using the telescope, or with the naked eye, as Feynan Ecolodge is located quite far from the nearest town, meaning that there is no light pollution
There are lots of hiking itineraries which can be done around Feynan
Feynan Ecolodge serves only vegetarian food
The Ecolodge can only be reached on foot or by 4x4
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
For a small country, Jordan has an extraordinary range of climates. The best time to visit climate-wise is in spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November), when the daytime temperatures aren't too extreme. April is probably the best month, when temperatures are warm and wildflowers are in bloom. March can be cold and rainy in the north but is balmy in Feynan, by the Gulf of Aqaba and the Dead Sea.
Call us on to start planning your vacation to Feynan Ecolodge or take a look at our itineraries to Dana Nature Reserve
Feynan Ecolodge is nestled at the bottom of a valley in Jordan's beautiful Dana Nature Reserve. The lodge is simple, but perfectly comfortable and very charming. This is a great base for off the beaten track adventures and fantastic hiking.
Feynan Ecolodge has 26 en-suite rooms. Most of the lodge does not have electricity, but solar panels provide enough power to offer lights in the bathrooms and a few of the public areas, as well as hot water. In the evenings, the rest of the lodge and rooms are lit up by hundreds of candles, which is wonderfully atmospheric. Although the hotel is not luxurious, it has won a number of international awards including being selected by National Geographic Traveler Magazine as one of the top 25 ecolodges in the world.
Feynan offers something very different from the larger more traditional hotels in Jordan. The rooms are clean and comfortable, and whilst they do not have fans or air-conditioning, they have windows which catch the breeze, and temperatures do get much cooler in the evenings.
Another positive aspect to the lodge's conservation ethos is the benefits it brings to the surrounding community. All of the staff are from local families and the gifts available in the lodge's shop and the candles used each evening are hand-made by local women. In fact, over fifty per cent of the revenue from the lodge stays within the local community and the drivers that take guests to and from the nearby village keep one hundred per cent of the revenue from the transfers.
The location is ideal for walks into the surrounding area, with number of trails of varying difficulty available. Hike over unspoiled terrain, visit local Bedouin encampments, canyon through the magnificent Wadi Ghwayr, mountain bike past ancient ruins, and descend into 4,000 year old copper mines. The food is exclusively vegetarian and locally produced using fresh produce with a range of options. There is a small cafe serving freshly grilled sandwiches, salad, juices, hot drinks and desserts throughout the day.
The lodge has 26 rooms. We recommend Deluxe Rooms, as these are significantly more spacious, and have large windows and balconies. There are some Family Rooms available which can accommodate four people. The rooms are simple but comfortable, and there are mosquito nets should guests wish to sleep with the windows open. The en-suite bathrooms have electricity and hot water showers.
Children are welcome to stay at Feynan Ecolodge, but there are no specific facilities for them. Whilst the usual way to arrive at the lodge is by a five-hour trek through the valley, it possible to drive from the nearby village. Given the lodge's activities, basic facilities, and the remote location, Feynan Ecolodge is better suited to families with older children or teenagers.
The lodge has a dining room where guests take meals at the same time, serving only vegetarian food. It also has a cosy sitting room which is ideal for reading a book. There is a gift shop, rooftop terrace with telescope, inner courtyard and numerous outdoor seating areas.
Feynan Ecolodge lies in the Dana Biosphere Reserve, which covers 300km of land, making it the largest reserve in Jordan. Dana is an area of tremendous variety in terms of wildlife, geology and landscape. Dana Biosphere Reserve hosts a wide array of flora and fauna. Over 800 plant species thrive within the reserve, three of which are unique to Dana. 449 different animals have been recorded, including threatened species such as the sand cat, Syrian wolf, lesser kestrel and spiny-tailed lizard.
Feynan offers guiding services tailored to suit personal interests and hiking styles. The guides are local Bedouins who have traversed the region their whole lives. For those travelers who prefer to explore on their own, Feynan’s staff are also happy to recommend suitable outings and help plan routes.
Hikes include sunset (complimentary), sunrise, half day and full day hikes to various nature spots, canyons, and archaeological sites.
Other activities include mountain biking, candle lighting, stargazing and cooking classes. Bedouin experiences and a day with a shepherd are also available.
Lucy Black (Staff)
After a long hike through the nature reserve to the Feynan Ecolodge, I must admit I was concerned that I would miss some of the comforts offered by more luxurious hotels, such as air conditioning and electricity. However, the lodge completely exceeded my expectations. The rooms are very comfortable and the balconies offered in the Deluxe Rooms add a certain elegance. To my relief, whilst the majority of the hotel has no electricity, the bathrooms do have ceiling lights and so you do not have to shower in the dark! There is also hot water which is heavenly after a hard day's walking.
As the sun sets behind the rugged mountains and the lodge begins to glow with the soft light of candles, it really is a magical experience. Lanterns light the stairways and the gentle beiges and creams of the walls and floors take on a golden hue.
The roof terrace is not to be missed. Lie or sit on a comfy palette with a mint tea and cast your gaze up to a sky that is filled with glittering stars. There are staff on hand to orientate the telescope to give you the best view of distant planets, or use their laser to point out the vast number of constellations that would not be visible nearer towns and cities.
Listening to the nightly presentation about the ethos and work of the lodge, it becomes even clearer that this is so much more than just a hotel with solar panels. As well as offering a relaxing haven from which to explore the reserve on a number of treks, the hotel also promotes traditional culture and hospitality, with activities that include spending time with the local Bedouins and learning about their history and way of life. All of the staff are from the area and local women hand-make the gifts available in the shop and the candles that so beautifully light the lodge.
Clare Monro (Staff)
Like Dana Guest House, this is not a super-luxurious hotel, but it is quite unique and is rather spectacular at sunset and after dark, when lit up with candles. There isn't any electricity, which I think makes it very special, but some people may find this an inconvenience. You can also go onto the roof terrace for some stargazing through the telescope - as there is no light pollution around Feynan, this is extra special! For more active types, it would be great to stay here for a couple of nights and do some hiking in the surrounding hills. The terrain is quite rocky, however! Also, for staunch carnivores, the food is all vegetarian - again, I think this is quite an unusual and interesting feature (even being a partial carnivore myself!).
Daniel Smith (Staff)
The Feynan Eco Lodge is something that makes any trip to Jordan very special. After a day's walk from Dana (or an off road transfer of about 20 minutes), you arrive feeling you are very much off the beaten track. The rooms are all very simple, but offer all the comforts you will need given how remote you are. What makes this place so special is the amazing food (a wide variety of mezze dishes) and as the sun sets, they light countless candles all around the property. I loved going up on the roof, sipping mint tea and looking up at the stars. The main sights of Jordan are so full of tourists you never really get the destination to yourself; here you get it perfectly.
Bedouin & Community Experiences in Dana Nature Reserve
Feynan Ecolodge is at the heart of the area's Bedouin community and has a range of experiences allowing guests to meet and interact with the locals. This can include being a shepherd for the day, or learning how to bake 'Arbood'; a traditional bread.
Dana Nature Reserve Trekking
There are various hikes on offer within the Dana Nature Reserve. You will be accompanied by a local guide, who is knowledgeable on flora and fauna indigenous to the area. The scenery is beautiful with dramatic views.
Stargazing at Feynan Ecolodge
After dinner, head up to the rooftop of Feynan Ecolodge where you can lie back on a mattress, sip Arabic tea and take in the incredible night sky above you. There is virtually no light pollution, and so the sky is wonderfully clear here.
Sunset Hike in Feynan
During the late afternoon, take a leisurely 20-minute stroll to the top of a small hill, where you can take in the beautiful sunset and watch the colors change across the valley as dusk sets in and the stars begin to emerge.
Amman, Dana, Feynan, Petra, Wadi Rum & Dead Sea
from $3800 pp 11 nights
- Great for those who want to get more off the beaten track in Jordan
- The Dana Nature Reserve offers fantastic trekking, and if you are lucky, some rare wildlife
- The scenery in Wadi Rum is incredibly dramatic, as well as offering beautiful sunsets and awe-inspiring starry skies
Jordan in Depth
Amman, Dead Sea, Dana, Feynan, Petra, Wadi Rum & Aqaba
from $4600 pp 12 nights
- Takes in all of the highlights of Jordan, including iconic sites such as Petra, and off the beaten track gems like the Dana Nature Reserve
- Combines culture, activity, adventure and relaxation
- Plenty of opportunities for stargazing and watching stunning sunsets
Location & directions
Dana Nature Reserve, Jordan
Feynan Ecolodge is located at the South Western edge of Dana Biosphere Reserve, approximately 215 km south of Amman off the Dead Sea-Aqaba highway. Please do not follow signs to Dana Biosphere Reserve, or head to the village of Dana (off the Kings Highway) unless you plan on hiking to the lodge.