Named after the Ottoman mountain village of Dana, Dana Nature Reserve is one of the largest reserves in Jordan. It is located in the eastern margin of the Great Rift Valley, and covers about 320 km².
The Reserve was designated as a protected area because of the variety of its eco-systems and its location in the Great Rift Valley. Both make the area unique.
It is the only nature reserve containing Jordan’s four different bio-geographical zones (Mediterranean, Irano-Turanian, Saharo-Arabian and Sudanian). The climate ranges from a Mediterranean semi-arid climate in the Eastern Rift Valley Highlands (cold, rainy winters and hot, dry summers), to an arid desert climate in the Wadi Araba Lowlands (high temperatures and low rainfall all year round).
Established in 1993, in part of the customary land of the people of Dana, Dana Nature Reserve is officially managed by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature.
It is Jordan’s most diverse reserve in terms of habitats and species, and is home to 45 mammal species, over 800 plant species and 215 bird species. Most of the species are globally endangered.
Hiking is the best way to see wildlife, and to experience the dramatic and stunning landscapes made up of different layers of stone (basalt, sandstone, limestone and granite).
Within the Reserve, there are 99 archaeological sites evidencing thousands of years of human activity. These include the copper mines in Feinan, trade route checkpoints and Nabatean, Roman and Byzantine tombs and churches. Caves in the area have provided shelter and homes for local inhabitants from ancient times until recently.
Allow yourself at least two days to explore and experience the diversity, serenity and magnitude of the Dana Nature Reserve.