Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Desert Glamping in Wadi Rum, Jordan

by Dalia
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Memories Aicha Luxury Camp

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Wadi Rum Jordan – Introduction

After our time in Amman, we journeyed south to explore the mesmerizing beauty of Wadi Rum. Nicknamed the “Valley of the Moon,” Jordan’s red desert is known for its captivating landscape of majestic sandstone mountains, winding canyons and vast expanses of sand dunes. Wadi Rum holds the distinction of being a protected area, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2011.

This review is part of a series covering my trip to Jordan:

Qatar QSuite vs. Emirates A380 – Business Class Showdown

Guide: Visiting the Vibrant City of Amman, Jordan

Review: W Amman – A Modern Twist of the Rose City

How to get to Wadi Rum 

There are multiple options to get to Wadi Rum from Amman, which is around a 4.5-hour drive. You can arrange for a private transfer through your hotel. I was quoted an exorbitant price of 165 JOD ($330) by the camp I planned to stay at in Rum.

If you prefer independence and flexibility, you can rent a car and drive there by taking the Desert Highway (Highway 15). If you plan to visit multiple attractions like Petra and Aqaba, consider signing up for a tour. Although, depending on the tour it may not include the option to spend the night at Rum.

You can also catch a flight from Amman to Aqaba if you’re pressed for time. You can spend the night in Aqaba and arrange for a day trip to Rum. Alternatively, hire a private driver for the 45-minute drive between Aqaba and Rum, especially if you’re interested in spending a night in the desert for stargazing.

The most economical option is to take JETT bus, which costs 15 JOD ($30) one-way per adult. Their bus station is at Al-Abdali, only a few minutes’ drive from W Amman, where we were staying. This is choice we ultimately went with to get to Wadi Rum.



Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Booking

When planning my trip to Wadi Rum, I had my heart set on staying in one of the camps featuring domes or “bubbles.” I wanted to have the full immersive experience of staring up at the star-studded night sky from the comfort of my dome.  After browsing several options, I chose Memories Aicha Luxury Camp based on photos showcasing its beautiful camp on their website.

Memories Aicha offered four “room” types:

  • Panoramic Luxury Suite
  • Panoramic Luxury Tent
  • Executive Luxury Tent
  • Junior Luxury Tent

I booked the Panoramic Luxury Tent Bubble at a cost of 270 JOD ($540) for the night. My aunt decided to join us last minute and booked the Junior Luxury Tent at a cost of 150 JOD ($300).

Tip: If staying in one of the bubbles, I recommend you request that they assign you one of the ones on the corner outskirts to have unobstructed views. Those also afford more privacy than the ones that are in the centre of the camp.

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Arrival and Check-in

Our JETT bus dropped us off at the Wadi Rum Visitors Centre. I had to call the camp to arrange for transport, which came at unexpected charge of 10 JOD. The camp utilizes the services of the Bedouin community that lives in Rum.

They sent us a driver who took us to the camp’s outpost to confirm we had a reservation before we continued to the camp. After that, we were back on the beat up pick-up truck to head to the Memories Aicha Luxury Camp. It was a very bumpy ride, but with stunning views of the desert landscape.

Wadi Rum Beauty

Wadi Rum Beauty

Pick-up truck

Our ride in the desert

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp - Reception

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Reception

Arriving at the camp in the early afternoon amidst the scorching temperatures, we were guided to the reception to do our check-in one of the bigger tents. The check-in process was quick and the associate advised us of all the different activities available at the camp.

Our bubble tent wasn’t ready, but my aunt’s junior tent was available. Making our way to the tent, we found the layout of bubbles and tents scattered amidst the stunning backdrop of rock formations and mountains. There were wooden pathways between the tents and bubbles, so you don’t have to walk on the hot desert sands.

Junior Luxury Tents

Junior Luxury Tents

Bubbles and tents

Bubbles and tents

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp

Panoramic Luxury Tent vs Junior Luxury Tent

My aunt’s tent was a decent size of 375 square feet. At its heart lay a king-sized bed with an intricately crafted wooden frame that added a touch of character to the room. Adjacent to the bed was a mirror and a coffee table with a kettle and water bottles.

Though lacking a traditional closet, there was a clothes hanging area opposite the bed, and a coat hanger on the other side of the bed was available. To the right of the bed was a cozy chaise lounge chair in which to unwind. Nearby, a wooden door led to a compact bathroom.

Junior Luxury Tent

Junior Luxury Tent


Clothes Hanging

Chaise Lounge Chair

Chaise Lounge Chair

Junior Luxury Tent - Bathroom

Junior Luxury Tent – Bathroom

When our bubble tent was ready, an associate dropped by to my aunt’s tent and delivered our keys. We walked the pathway to reach our assigned bubble, which was situated behind my aunt’s tent. Thankfully, our bubble was nestled in the outskirts, with no tents or bubbles directly behind us. However, neighbouring bubbles were next to us, compromising absolute privacy.

Stepping into our bubble tent, it felt like we were entering a Hollywood set for Aladdin. The room’s décor, particularly the bedframe, was very tacky. An unattractive golden chandelier was hanging in the centre above the bed, clashing with peachy-coloured curtains.

My Bubble

My Bubble

Panoramic Luxury Bubble Tent

Panoramic Luxury Bubble Tent

Panoramic Luxury Tent Bubble

Peach Gold Clash

Compared to the junior tent, our bubble felt less spacious at 340 square feet. With the curtains drawn, I could see into the bubbles on either side. Of course, they can also see into ours, compromising privacy.

Across the bed were two traditional chairs with a coffee table. The room amenities included slippers, along with a coffee machine, tea kettle and two bottles of water. To the left of the bed was a worn-down mirror and dresser with just one drawer and a hanger, offering minimal storage. The absence of closets meant we had to live out of a suitcase. This wasn’t an issue for us because of our short stay.

Room with a view

Room with a view

Coffee and storageThe bathroom was situated near the entrance of the bubble and behind the bedroom. It was very dated with a worse colour scheme than the room. I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves. Don’t expect any luxurious bath products here.

Panoramic Luxury Bubble Tent - Bathroom

Panoramic Luxury Bubble Tent – Bathroom

In terms of charging and being connected, electrical outlets were limited, and while Wi-Fi was available, it was very weak. Hence, if you have anything important to do online, best to plan to do it before or after your desert trip to Rum. I personally enjoyed being mostly disconnected, and it was only 24 hours, so I survived.

Situated on a deck, our bubble also offered outdoor seating, with chairs to enjoy the desert scenery.

Panoramic Luxury Bubble Tent

Panoramic Luxury Bubble Tent

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Activities

The Bedouin community living in Wadi Rum holds exclusive authority to navigate this protected area. They make their living from providing various tours. Aicha camp works with Bedouins to organize tours for interested guests.

For example, you can sign up for a 3 hour jeep tour accommodating up to 5 people at a cost of 60 JOD ($120). This tour includes visiting the Nabatean Temple, Lawrence Spring, Sand Dunes, Khazali Canyon and little bridge. They also offer a full-day tour, but it’s best to book that in advance.

Although they advertise it as a jeep tour, it’s actually a pick-up truck. Aicha Camp notes on their website that they take no responsibility for the condition of the truck or the actual tour.

Wadi Rum - Camel

Wadi Rum – Camel ride

You can also sign up for the popular one-hour camel tour at 20 JOD ($40) per person. Early risers can take advantage of the tours that start at dawn, while others can opt for the sunset tour. They also offer horseback riding tours, but those are more limited, so you would have to pre-book in advance.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can pre-book a hiking excursion led by knowledgeable Bedouin guides. This camp also offers a complimentary stargazing walking tour at night, but it’s subject to the weather and the absence of a full moon.

Wadi Rum - Chilling Camel

Wadi Rum – Chilling camel

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Dining

Our room rate included both dinner and breakfast at their onsite restaurant, Aicha, which was presented buffet style. For dinner, the highlight was the zarb meat. It’s a traditional Jordanian dish prepared Bedouin-style in an underground oven fueled by hot coals.

Zarb - meat cooked underground

Zarb – meat cooked underground

They served zarb lamb and chicken on a bed of rice. The meat was so tender and delicious. The rest of the food served at the buffet simply couldn’t compete. For breakfast, while there was a large variety, the quality fell short of my expectations. At least they did have an omelette station where they served fresh eggs as opposed to the powdered variety.

Aicha Restaurant - Breakfast

Aicha Restaurant – Breakfast

Aicha Restaurant

Aicha Restaurant

Aicha Restaurant - Seating

Aicha Restaurant – Seating

The Aicha Restaurant, housed in a big plastic tent, lacked ambiance. It just felt like entering a large food court. By contrast, tucked behind the restaurant was a café that was built into the side of rock formations. It was unique and had an inviting atmosphere.

In the evenings, they had musical performances with local Bedouin artists playing keyboard. Expect to pay tourist prices here. A mint lemonade will set you back 5 JOD for instance. Despite this, I highly recommend a visit to the café during your stay. The servers were attentive and the Wi-Fi signal was stronger here than it was at the tent.

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp - Cafe entrance

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Café  entrance

Gorgeous cafe

Gorgeous Café

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp - Cafe

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Café into the rocks

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp - Cafe with a view

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Café with a view

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp - Cafe

Memories Aicha Luxury Camp – Café


At checkout at 11 a.m., we vacated our tents and temporarily stored our luggage in the reception tent. I inquired about the cost of hiring a private driver to take us to Aqaba, our next stop on our trip. The front desk associate quoted me 40 JOD, to which I agreed.

We decided to stay an extra couple of hours at the camp to accompany my aunt until her departure on the afternoon bus to Amman. When I requested the driver for 1 p.m., the front desk associate informed me that I had to pay an extra 10 JOD since it was two hours after checkout time. This struck me as unreasonable since we had already checked out of our tents, so it was nothing but a money grab. This left a sour taste in my mouth at the end of our stay.

Take Away

I found that Memories Aicha Luxury Camp used the word “luxury” too liberally. While it certainly had things like air conditioning to make the stay more comfortable for its guests, it’s best to temper your expectations to avoid disappointment.

For example, the bedding quality fell short of luxury standards and didn’t even include a flat sheet. Additionally, the food was mediocre at best, with the exception of the zarb dish. I found the level of service was inconsistent. The servers at the café were friendly and attentive. Yet, the front desk associate that worked the day shift was very unpleasant to deal with.

Unfortunately, our stay was further impacted by adverse weather conditions beyond the camp’s control. Although we travelled in late spring, sandstorms disrupted our experience, obscuring both sunset and sunrise views. The night stargazing tour was also cancelled as a result of the weather. If you plan a trip to Rum, I recommend going there in early spring or late fall to minimize the risk of bad weather.

You may be wondering, is it best to stay in a regular tent or a bubble?

I personally found the tent offered better value at this camp. When compared to the junior tent, our bubble was less spacious and it heated up quickly due to the glass geometric dome. While the bubbles offer unobstructed view for stargazing, the trade-off is the loss of privacy when you have the curtains drawn.

Should my travels bring me back to Wadi Rum, I’ll likely try a different camp.

Desert Glamping

Desert Glamping

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