The moon shone brightly, illuminating the façade of the Treasury – the most famous of the monuments in Petra, an ancient city in southern Jordan. In the square directly in front of the Treasury, hundreds of candles cast a warm glow on the faces of the people who had come to experience Petra by night and to listen to a Bedouin musical performance. The crowd’s excited chatter quickly dissipated when a Bedouin man appeared. He took out a flute from his pocket and within moments mesmerised the crowd with his hypnotic tunes. Couples huddled together on the carpets as the Bedouin continued his performance with a series of melancholic songs. The atmosphere was simply magical.
An enchanting experience in Petra
The crowd slowly left the square after the Bedouin’s final encore. I stayed back to take a few more pictures when I noticed a couple walk, hand in hand, to the centre of the square. Surrounded by a sea of candles, they stood silently, their eyes glued to the magnificent Treasury. The man whispered something into his companion’s ear and she laughed.
She was still smiling, visibly filled with glee, when the man slowly lowered himself onto one knee, his hands never leaving her’s for one moment. Her smile turned into an expression of surprise. I was too far away to hear what he said but it was obviously a marriage proposal. Her response was equally obvious: she nodded excitedly before pulling him up for a passionate embrace. They laughed and danced in a small circle, the candles illuminating their every movement. By this time, I wasn’t the only person who’d noticed what had just happened. The Bedouins burst into song and people started clapping. It was a small, intimate celebration at a breathtaking location. I’m not sure if the man had planned it beforehand or if he was simply inspired by the enchanted setting but I couldn’t help but think that this is the perfect place to propose… and a magical place to say “YES!”.
Experiencing Petra by night
Seeing Petra by night is absolutely one of the most magical things to do in Jordan. Hundreds of candles line the Siq, the mile-long gorge which leads visitors into the city. As you walk atop cobblestones that are more than a thousand years old, you’ll be struck by the views of the moonlit gorge and its wavy appearance.
The highlight appears at the end of the Siq when the Treasury building slowly comes into view, cloaked by a faint glow from the sea of candles at its feet. The Bedouin’s musical performance creates a wondrous atmosphere that oozes romance.
Seeing Petra by night was a moving experience and as I strolled through the Siq, I couldn’t help but think how special it would be if I had a loved one at my side. I’ve made a promise to myself that I will one day return… this time, not alone.
If you’re planning to pop the question or if you’re looking for an ultra-romantic experience with a loved one, Petra by night is the perfect place to be. Read more about things to do in Petra.
Read more about Jordan on Velvet Escape
- Unique things to do in Jordan
- Things to see in Jerash
- Things to do in Wadi Rum
- A hot-air balloon flight over Wadi Rum
Note: a big thank you goes to Visit Jordan for their gracious hospitality.