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Meaningful Travel Map of Jordan

Spend your money where it counts!

Visit one of the 12 social enterprises on the Meaningful Travel Map launched in partnership with Tourism Cares and add special meaning to your trip to Jordan. By offering unique and hands-on cultural experiences for travelers, each of these social enterprises is satisfying the demand from travelers seeking authentic sustainable experiences that make a difference and their need to use the power of travel to help people and places thrive. If this is what you are looking for, you have come to the right place!

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Baraka Destinations
Summaga Cafe
Beit Khairat Souf
Syrian Jasmine House
Iraq Al Amir Women's Cooperative
Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature
Jordan River Foundation: Bani Hamida Women's Weaving Project
Al Numeira Environmental Association
Feynan Ecolodge
Montreal Hotel
Ammarin Bedouin Camp

Map Legend

  • Capital City Amman
  • Airport
  • City
  • Social Enterprise
  • Tourist Attraction
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Select One for our Social Enterprises

  • Baraka Destinations
  • Summaga Cafe
  • Beit Khairat Souf
  • Syrian Jasmine House
  • Iraq Al Amir Women's Cooperative
  • Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature
  • Jordan River Foundation: Bani Hamida Women's Weaving Project
  • Al Numeira Environmental Association
  • Feynan Ecolodge
  • Montreal Hotel
  • Ammarin Bedouin Camp
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Baraka Destinations

The perfect detour for the social traveler – experience this cluster of local tourism experiences and businesses in Um Qais.

After consulting on dozens of tourism development projects, Baraka encountered many local communities desperately wanting to engage in the tourism sector, but are not succeeding, even with support from training programs and micro investments by development agencies. They are struggling to create products that tourists want and unable to reach the tourism markets alone. 

Baraka Destinations, a social venture that develops clusters of community-owned tourism businesses, incubates them with the local owners until the business is profitable, skills are transferred and capacities are at the standard to enable tourism entrepreneurs to build their own villages into vibrant tourism destinations.

 

 

Summaga Cafe

Celebrate multicultural Jordan by learning soap-making and crochet, helping their newest residents and women entrepreneurs.

Summaga is a relaxed all-day café, restaurant, and shop that offers and authentic taste of Ajloun. The menu is based on local ingredients produced by the farms, homemade dairy products, preserves, honey, herbs, spices and traditionally foraged greens presented through simple, traditional dishes typical to the area. Menu items are prepared and assembled on the spot and served with warm Jordanian hospitality. The space was recently revamped based on an ‘upcycle and re-use’ theme. The cooperative’s products are also on display for sale within the same space. serves breakfast, lunch and dinner menus and signature dishes using organic and free-range ingredients produced by Al-Kifah cooperative farms, including organic olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, zaatar, sumac, free range eggs and dibbes (molasses).

Social Impact

The restaurant is the main outlet channeling the produce of the 25 organic farms within the villages of Ajloun. It contributes to the direct sale of products in addition to showcasing recipes and unique dishes that can be made with them. Moreover, Summaga created an opportunity for Ajlouni women to work on a full-time basis and be part of the tourism workforce. Summaga also contributes to job opportunities created on the farms themselves.

Beit Khairat Souf

This tranquil kitchen and garden serves up fresh breakfast with local goods and provides lessons, training, and jobs for locals.

Beit Khairat Souf is a unique place combines the elements of nature and allows visitors to experience some of the natural and tasty pleasures of Jordan. It is a historical and cultural heritage of the Batarseh family. The house was built in 1881 and it was renovated in 2016 to become Beit Khairat Souf to continue serving the community in accordance with the house’s history and tradition. Beit Khairat Souf is the perfect place to experience the tastes and traditions of the Jordanian culture.

It is managed by Alnoor Almouben Association, which is comprised of a group of very strong-willed and ambitious women, mothers, and wives. The goal of Beit Khairat Souf is to create a platform for local women to financially support themselves through opportunities for economic development in the heart of Souf.

Syrian Jasmine House

Celebrate multicultural Jordan by learning soap-making and crochet, helping their newest residents and women entrepreneurs.

Lara Shaheen started the Syrian Jasmine House as a way to create jobs for Syrian women while introducing Jordan to traditional Syrian products. The company was named in honor of her hometown Damascus, which is often referred to as, “the capital of Jasmine.” Lara started the center with 5 women and raw materials. They had a small 50-meter office that housed the materials but Lara ensured that the women could work from home to reduce transportation fees and give them the space to care for their families.

Once she put the business on facebook their work received a lot of attention. Women started coming to them with their skills in hope of employment. In a bigger and newly remodeled center, Lara now employs 10 women full time at her office and buys merchandise from 70 other women. She is working towards a target of 200 women by the end of 2018. Lara said, “We changed the language, we were no longer waiting for funds and help, we took control of our own fate.”

Iraq Al Amir Women's Cooperative

Learn traditional paper making, pottery and more with your family at this renowned center for local training and knowledge.

The Iraq Al Amir women’s cooperative Association was founded by the Noor Al-Hussein Foundation over two decades ago. It aimed to make the women financially independent and to raise their standard of living by increasing their income and preserving local heritage.

Under the umbrella of the NHF the project employed 41 women in the production of handmade paper, hand-woven fabric, ceramics/clay, and food processing. The NHF then turned to capacity building with an extensive training on finance and admin, quality control, product design, marketing, and donor linkages after the women’s cooperative took complete ownership of their project.

The cooperation exists to keep their culture alive, protect the environment, and to provide meaningful employment for local women in the village. The workshop is organized into three domains; handmade paper production, pottery, and a hand weaving mill with three handlooms. In addition, the women at Iraq Al Amir are renowned for their fresh and delicious produce, often catering for visitors and clients!

Social Impact

Located in a village outside of Amman where poverty is high and employment is low. Unemployment for women is around 33% in urban areas and is even higher in rural areas. As the cooperative is managed and run by members of the society it has created many job opportunities for women of all ages. There are currently 12 women on a fixed salary and a higher number who work on commission. They also have provided training for more than 150 women from surrounding villages on weaving, paper making, and ceramics. The cooperative also strives to give back to their community as they have developed a “knowledge station,” which provides the community with services including printing, photocopying, internet access, and computer courses. 

Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature

Explore and shop with Jordan’s environmental champion, with adventures to go on and wildlife to admire.

The Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature is an independent national organization devoted to the conservation of Jordan's natural resources. RSCN was established in 1966 with His Majesty the late King Hussein as Honorary President. RSCN has the mission of protecting and managing the natural resources of Jordan, for it is responsible for protecting wildlife and wild places. Thus, it is one of the few national organizations in the Middle East with such a public service mandate

Wild Jordan Adventures (The brand name of the RSCN) offers eco-tourists an awe-inspiring variety of destinations to explore and action-packed activities to enjoy. Jordan’s nature reserves are the best way to discover the vastly different scenery and nature around Jordan. For adventurers, camping, safari, canyoning, hiking and cycling are some of the best ways to experience Jordan.

 

Jordan River Foundation: Bani Hamida Women's Weaving Project

Try your hand at traditional weaving while boosting women’s rights and livelihoods at the same time at Bani Hamida.

In 1995, Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah established Jordan River Foundation (JRF) to promote child safety, women, and communities’ empowerment in Jordan. Today, the Foundation is recognized nationally, regionally and internationally as an agent for positive change and as a leading Jordanian institution contributing to the social and economic wellbeing of citizens.

A visit to Bani Hamida Women Weaving project is an unforgettable experience. The center itself is located in beautiful one story level home that has a historical feel to it and is surrounded by spacious outdoor space and garden. Upon visiting the center, visitors are welcomed by the women weavers who are eager to show them their beautiful wool products, share their stories with them and provide them with the opportunity to have a hands-on experience in using the weaving machines and possible take part in weaving their own carpet or basket they may want to purchase.

Visitors can also purchase these unique products on site. The rugs made in the center showcase traditional Jordanian heritage with a modern twist. An opportunity to eat and drink tasty homemade local food cooked by the local women of the area is also available and can be prepared for the visit.

 

Al Numeira Environmental Association

Bike, snack, and get dirty in their gardens and other projects while learning with one of the Rift Valley’s newest social startups.

Al Numeira Environmental Association was created after a group of people from the community finished a hike in a nearby wadi. They were disheartened by all the trash and pollution in their beautiful village and decided to form an Environmental Association to counteract it. Al Numeira Environmental Association's mission is to promote innovative water conservation methods and environmental education to build a more sustainable future and improve human well-being in the Jordan Valley.

The Dead Sea tourist experience is often monopolized by high-end resorts, which do not offer unique or authentic experiences. Al Numeira Environmental Association offers guests outdoor activities and food that showcase the area while adhering to principles of conservation.

Social Impact

NEA has brought their greywater project to local schools and mosques. They aim to reduce the amount of water used while educating the community about a more sustainable lifestyle. In the years since its inception, Al Numeira has been successful in revitalizing the community’s farmland and gardens, which is also limiting the amount of dust and sand picked up by wind in the immediate area. They are reintroducing traditional agricultural practices, ones that do not harm the environment.

Feynan Ecolodge

Go Green and local at this award-winning lodge at the Dana Biosphere - help build local jobs and support conservation efforts.

The lodge was built in 2005 by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN) and has been operated by EcoHotels (local Jordanian company) since September 2009. The project’s aim is to use ecotourism to generate revenue for conservation as well as provide sustainable, nature-based sources of income for the remote, rural, poor Bedouin communities of the lower part of the Dana Biosphere Reserve. Twelve years on, Feynan is a pioneer of ecotourism in Jordan and has become a world-leading example of sustainable tourism. Under the management of EcoHotels, Feynan developed an ethos that stands on 5 pillars:

1. Offer guests unique and authentic experiences

2. Contribute to the conservation work of Dana Biosphere Reserve

3. Benefit and empower the local community

4. Minimize the environmental footprint of all the operations and activities

5. Provide environmental awareness, education & interpretation to guests, staff and local community

Feynan’s ethos and work has earned it numerous international award, including being chosen by National Geographic Traveler as one of the best 25 ecolodges in the world.

Montreal Hotel

Reenact the battles of Saladin and the Crusaders while supporting the veterans of today.

The hotel offers an array of outdoor experiences that aim to highlight the rich history and the stunning landscapes that surround this mountainous region. The hotel and the experiences that they offer also benefit the community of Shobak greatly, as the majority of the staff are retired veterans. The hotel has a capacity for 45 guests in 20 rooms.

Guests will uncover what life was like during the 12th century and how the city progressed from there. Montréal Hotel also provides authentic local experiences that reveal life on the edge of the desert. Montréal Hotel works with the local community of Shobak to provide activities, such as hiking, cycling, home cooked meals, and cooking classes. The hotel also organizes trips to a number of beautiful vantage points, local villages, farms, and local associations to take photographs, buy local products, and obtain a better understanding of the local economy.

Social Impact

Shobak also has a large community of military veterans. The situation of military veterans is quite unique as there is a forced retirement age at 36 to make room for new recruits. After retirement veterans receive a pension which is not enough to support a family and most must seek additional sources of income. The JHRC and the Montréal hotel employ a great number of military veterans in order to provide them with a fair and steady source of income. The Montréal hotel broke-even in 2017 due to an increase in tourism, and as a result has plans to hire more military veterans from the area. The hotel also sources as much as it can from the local communities so as to facilitate the growth of the local economy. In the past year, tourism to the area has increased by 68%.

Ammarin Bedouin Camp

Any stay at this camp founded and owned by the local Bedouin promises living heritage and impact in the shadow of Petra.

A 10-minute walk from Little Petra (signposted off the approach road), this camp is in Siq Al Amti, hidden in a spectacular amphitheatre of sand and hills, and run by the local Ammarin tribe. Accommodations are comprised of a mattress and blankets in a sectioned Bedouin tent with concrete floors, with a clean shower and toilet block. 

At the Ammarin Bedouin Camp, they work on combining history, nature, heritage, and culture in one of the most beautiful areas in Jordan. They offer activities especially for their guests to bring them closer to the nature and history of the area as well as the local inhabitants of this important location. You cannot find a more genuine experience of Bedouin hospitality than at the Ammarin Bedouin Camp.

The Jordan Trail

The Jordan Trail is a long distance hiking trail in Jordan connecting the length of Jordan from Um Qais in the north to Aqaba in the south. Offering 40 days of hiking over more than 650 kilometers of trail, and traveling through 52 villages and towns on its way. The trail traverses the diverse landscapes and vistas of the country, from the rolling wooded hills of the north, the rugged wadis, and cliffs overlooking the Jordan Rift Valley, the rose rock of Petra, the dramatic sands and towering mountains in Wadi Rum, to the crystal waters of the Red Sea.

 As you walk the Jordan Trail, it becomes a journey through the history of Jordan and an encounter with its diverse culture. Traveling the length of the country enables a chance to peel through the different layers of culture, to taste the varied cuisines of Jordan, encounter locals while walking and spending your nights in their home-stays. It is also an opportunity to learn the history of Jordan, the different civilizations who have made their marks on the land. The trail moves through major historical sites in the region such as Um Qais, Jerash, and Petra, while also harboring hidden ruins resting amongst the land.

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The Power of Tourism

Driving positive social change through
sustainable, authentic experiences for travelers
Visit Tourism Care's website to  learn more about their work

The Power of Tourism

Driving positive social change through sustainable, authentic experiences for travelers

Check Out Published Articles  about Tourism Cares with Jordan

Add Meaning to Your Trip to Jordan in...

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Amman

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Portrait Image of The Jordan Trail

The Jordan Trail

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Portrait Image of Madaba Mosiac

Madaba

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Portrait Image of Dana Biosphere Reserve

Dana Biosphere Reserve

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Tourism Cares with Jordan

In February 2018, the Jordan Tourism Board North America in partnership with Tourism Cares launched the first ever Meaningful Travel Map of Jordan. The map, an interactive resource, is meant to educate the travel industry and travel-goers about the many social enterprises and nonprofit organizations in Jordan that offer an incredible experience to tourists and also benefit the community directly. There are currently 12 social enterprises on the map and there are plans for even more to be added.

Watch the video from the Tourism Cares with Jordan Event

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Videos from Jordan Social Enterprises

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    Ammarin Bedouin Camp

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    Summaga Cafe

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    Ammarin Bedouin Camp Party

Ammarin Bedouin Camp

Summaga Cafe

Ammarin Bedouin Camp Party

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