What To Wear In Wadi Rum: Your Complete Packing List

Choosing what to wear in the Wadi Rum desert is never easy, as the desert weather can be tricky to navigate. 
You need to stay protected from the sun, you need to be prepared for the heat, and you need to stay comfortable while doing various Wadi Rum activities. You’ll also need options to keep you warm at night when the temperature drops. 
This is especially important if you do our multi-day Petra, Wadi Rum and Dead Sea tour here at Skyhook in a group or independent travel through Jordan.
To help you figure this all out, here’s our complete Jordan travel guide on what to wear in Wadi Rum.

What to Wear in Wadi Rum: The Essentials

Figuring out what to wear to Wadi Rum is a challenge because the desert can experience extreme fluctuations in temperatures not to mention figuring out how long to spend in Wadi Rum.
The weather in Wadi Rum involves scorching days and cold nights, so you need to be prepared for both when deciding on the best time to go to Wadi Rum.
Plus, you’ll probably be camping or trekking in Wadi Rum, which means you’ll want to keep your pack as light as possible. After all, who wants to lug around a giant suitcase in the desert?
To help you get this right, here’s a basic list of what to pack for Wadi Rum.


Choosing a Wadi Rum outfit should be done based on the weather. Here’s a general guideline to help you decide what to wear in Wadi Rum.
  • Shirts: Lightweight, long-sleeved shirts made of breathable materials like cotton or linen are ideal. They offer protection from the sun while allowing air circulation to keep you cool. They’re ideal for hiking through the desert, keeping you protected from the sun on a jeep trip, and can be layered up when the temperature drops at night.

  • Pants: Loose-fitting, comfortable pants, preferably full-length to protect your legs from the sun and any abrasive elements in the desert environment. When the wind picks up you’ll want to have your legs protected from the sand.

  • Layers: Consider packing a light jacket, sweater, or fleece for cooler evenings or mornings when temperatures can drop. Layering allows you to adjust to temperature variations throughout the day. There’s no need to bring along your bulkiest ski jacket, but strategically packing warmer layers can help you adjust to any weather conditions and stay comfortable.

This is a very basic overview of what to wear in Wadi Rum. The most important thing is to pack lightweight, breathable, cool clothes that ideally offer sun protection too. Being prepared for both hot and cold weather on the same trip is important.
hiking in jordan
Wearing a hat or sunglasses to protect yourself against the scorching sun is key.

Head and Eye Protection

When planning what to wear in Wadi Rum, protecting yourself from the sun is one of the most important considerations. 
There’s no shade in the desert, and the sun can be relentless. So, you’ll need to make sure you’re well covered.
  • Wide Brimmed Hat: A broad-brimmed hat provides shade for your face, neck, and ears, shielding them from direct sunlight. This is incredibly important. It’s generally a good idea to try to find a lightweight, packable hat instead of one with a stiff brim, as this makes it easier to pack for your trip and stash the hat away while you travel to and from the desert.

  • Sunglasses: Quality sunglasses with UV protection are essential to shield your eyes from the intense sunlight and blowing sand. Polarized lenses can reduce glare, improving visibility in the desert landscape. If there’s one thing you don’t want to forget for your trip to Wadi Rum, it’s a good pair of sunglasses. This is essential no matter what time of year you visit. 

Stay protected from the sun, and you’ll have a far more enjoyable experience in Wadi Rum.
wear appropriate footwear while hiking the jordan trail
Choose closed-toe shoes or boots for hiking through Wadi Rum.


People often get stuck when choosing the right shoes to wear in the desert.
Although the terrain is mostly soft sand, you’ll still want a strong closed shoe. This makes it a lot easier to cover distances over the sand, and it protects your feet from the sun.
Closed-toe shoes or boots with durable soles are crucial for walking on the sandy and rocky terrain of Wadi Rum. Comfortable footwear will prevent discomfort and protect your feet from potential hazards.
You might want to pack an extra pair of sandals to wear while you’re relaxing at your campsite and not exploring. However, spending the whole day in sandals could hurt your feet and result in sunburn.
swimming in jordan
Pack a swimsuit if your tour includes swimming in the natural pools or local waterholes.
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When choosing what to wear in Wadi Rum, there are plenty of added accessories you can bring. While it’s good to be prepared, packing light is also essential. 
To help you choose what to bring, here are some of the most useful accessories for a trip to Wadi Rum.
  • Scarf or Shemagh: A versatile accessory that can protect your face and neck from sun exposure, dust, and sand. It can also provide warmth when temperatures drop. There’s a good reason that the local people always wear these when traveling through the desert.

  • Bandana or Buff: An additional option to protect your face, neck, or head from the sun and dust. It can be worn in various ways based on your comfort and needs and can be great for adding an extra layer of protection against the sun.

  • Swimwear: This is not always essential, but If your itinerary includes activities like swimming in the natural pools or waterholes, pack your swimwear. There’s nothing more refreshing than a swim during a hike in the middle of the hot desert.

hiking the jordan trail
Be sure to pack sunscreen for a Wadi Rum trip.

Sun Protection and Skincare

As we’ve already mentioned, proper sun protection is a non-negotiable in the desert.
Choose a high-SPF sunscreen to shield your skin from the strong desert sun. Reapply as needed, especially if sweating or spending extended periods outdoors.
The desert air can also be very dry. Carry moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated and prevent dryness or irritation. This will make your trip a lot more comfortable - especially if your body is not used to desert climates.
hiking through jordan
Pack light and breathable clothing for the Wadi Rum desert.

8 Tips for Packing for Wadi Rum

Packing efficiently will help make your trip to the Wadi Rum desert far more enjoyable. Here are some tips to help you pack efficiently and effectively for your trip to the Wadi Rum desert.

Lightweight Clothing

Pack lightweight, breathable clothing made of natural fabrics like cotton or linen. Opt for long-sleeved shirts and pants to protect against the sun and desert elements.
A lightweight long-sleeved shirt will be far more effective at keeping you cool compared to a heavy short-sleeved shirt. Remember, your clothing is also there to shade you from the sun, so opting for a thin and lightweight natural fabric is always a good idea.

Pack Light

In case we haven’t made this clear enough - pack light!
You don't need a lot of clothes when visiting the desert. You will be far happier with a smaller pack to carry around. 
You’ll get around in Wadi Rum with jeep rides, hiking, and possibly even camel rides. This means there’s no space for large, heavy trunks. Plus, there’s no way you can drag a wheeled suitcase along in the desert. 
So, bring along a comfortable backpack or duffle bag, and keep it as small and lightweight as possible. It will make getting to Wadi Rum and navigating your way around the desert far easier.
Don't forget to layer your clothing for the cooler evenings at Wadi Rum.

Sturdy Footwear

Select closed-toe shoes or hiking boots with robust soles to navigate the rocky and sandy terrain comfortably. Ensure they're broken in and comfortable for long walks or hikes.
Hot and heavy hiking boots may seem like a strange choice in the desert. However, remember that the desert sand gets extremely hot, so the last thing you’ll want is direct contact with this sand all day. A pair of protective shoes is far more comfortable.

Layering Options

Pack layers for temperature fluctuations. Evenings can get cooler, so bring a light jacket or sweater to stay warm.
Try to bring lightweight, but warm, layer options like fleece or down. This lets you easily add layers of warmth without having to make your pack bulky.

Hydration Essentials

Carry a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated throughout your explorations. Consider electrolyte packets or hydration tablets to replenish lost minerals.

First Aid Kit

Prepare a basic first aid kit with essentials like adhesive bandages, antiseptic cream, pain relievers, and any prescribed medications you may need.

Portable Power Bank

Keep your devices charged with a portable power bank. It ensures you can capture memories and stay connected, especially if your trip involves Wadi Rum camping or extended outdoor activities. There’s no electricity in the middle of the desert.

Respectful Clothing (if visiting local communities)

If you’re planning to visit local communities or cultural sites, carry modest and respectful clothing, particularly for women, to adhere to local customs and traditions.
This involves clothing that covers your body, and possibly a scarf - which is what you’ll want to pack anyway to stay protected from the sun in this harsh desert environment.
packing for wadi rum
Don't forget to pack a water bottle for your Wadi Rum trip.


When choosing what to wear in Wadi Rum, pack light, consider the sun, and make sure you pack for the different activities you’ll be doing.
Packing smart will make your trip to Wadi Rum, an excellent place to visit in Jordan, with us at Skyhook Adventure far more enjoyable. 

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