Journey To The High Place of Sacrifice

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

On my first day in Petra I did a truly insane amount of hiking. In addition to walking the entire main trail, I also hiked to well above the Treasury and conquered the 900ish stone steps that separated me from the gorgeous Monastery.

According to my iPhone ‘Health’ app, I walked a whopping 24.7km – and I did it all in my Birkenstocks and jeans!

I was aching from my toes all the way up to my head, and I am pretty sure that if hair strands had nerve endings those would’ve been aching too!

However, despite my soreness and stiff muscles, I was in Petra! I couldn’t let a day in the Lost City go to waste purely because of some physical discomfort. So after giving myself a little pep talk, it was time to tackle yet another hiking trail; and this time I was headed to the High Place of Sacrifice.

To reach this trail, follow the main trail from the Treasury down the Street of Facades, keeping to the left. If you hit the amphitheatre you have gone too far! On the left hand side, keep your eyes peeled for a big set of stairs – this is the beginning of the High Place of Sacrifice trail.

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

Maps and online guides told me that this would be a hard hike requiring up to 4 hours, however, I had come to learn that all these hiking trail maps significantly overestimate how long the trails take to complete.

Realistically, anyone with a halfway decent fitness level would be able to complete this hike in more like 2.5 hours, however, out of all the hikes I had done, I found this one the most technically difficult – but this was mostly down to my choice in footwear. There is a lot of loose sand covering the steps, making them very slippery. I stacked it multiple times and am very lucky that I didn’t end up with anything more than a few bruises. The moral of the story is, don’t be like me and don sandals for this type of thing – wear proper hiking shoes!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

The initial run of stairs takes about 15 minutes to ascend, and once up you will likely be met by some furry locals. This part of the trail was actually exceptionally noisy, not because the goats were bleating, but instead because they all had bells around their necks!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

After saying goodbye to the goats it was onwards and upwards. The latter part of this trail is totally exposed and the sun is unrelentingly brutal. It is a good idea to bring water, sunscreen, a hat and to cover up as much of your skin as possible.

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

This later part of the trail is not as well signed as it could be, and as such, you may find yourself needing to ask directions from one of the “bedouins” who hang out along the flatter parts of the trail trying to sell you their cheap souvenirs. Unfortunately, asking for directions will open you up to people insisting that you make a purchase – but as long as you firmly say ‘no’ they should quickly back off.

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

Getting up to the actual ‘high place of sacrifice’ does require a small amount of scrambling and climbing up some precarious-ish rocks, so take your time and proceed with your concentration cap on.

Once you actually reach the High Place of Sacrifice it can be a little bit polarising – some people find it amazing, others wonder why they bothered.

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

I gotta admit, I was very on the fence. Sure, it was a beautiful place and in a very well preserved condition, but compared to some other hikes that I had done around Petra, I just wasn’t as head over heels in love with it!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

However, if you are interested in ancient sacrificial rituals, then this would probably be much more appealing and satisfying for you than it was for me.

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

In all honesty, I was more excited about meeting another Jordanian kitty than I was about the trail!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

Even though the ‘high place’ may not have been as enthralling as I would have hoped, the views from the top were undeniably beautiful, and as a result, I was still so happy that I had made the effort.

Stay tuned for more Petra exploring, and as always, happy solo travelling!

A solo travellers guide to hiking to the High Place of Sacrifice in Petra, Jordan!

THE  LOWDOWN 

Getting to Petra: Flights arrive to Amman from many airport hubs, from Amman you can drive or bus to Petra
Petra Gate Hostel: A basic but comfortable hostel – dorm beds start at $16/night
The Lost City of Petra: More information about ticket prices can be found here
Threads: My white top is by Tigerlily Swimwear
Camera: Images captured with an Olympus OM-D E-M1 in conjunction with M.Zuiko 12-40mm f2/8 lens
Remember: Wear proper hiking shoes – you will be so glad you did!

Posted by

20-something year old Australian backpacker writing her way around the world.

36 thoughts on “Journey To The High Place of Sacrifice

      1. Hiya Ellen, my husband is refusing to go hiking because he is wondering about the bears and the cougars in the mountains of North America. I am determined that I shall drag him by the scruff of the neck very soon, possibly when we go to the hills to see the colours of autumn here. My first one here, so I am excited! How is it going for you? xx

  1. I googled Birkenstocks.
    Google showed me lots of photos.
    I thought: “ah…that explains things”.

    If you ever go to Machu Picchu, or some similar place that requires hiking about, I hope you invest in some proper boots. Saying that they have gone really expensive now.

    I collect words and phrases and so I was caught up with “concentration cap”. Was that something I had heard, and used, or was I thinking of something similar? I thought I could start a list of imaginary hats to go along with “thinking cap” and put concentration cap into Google to have it come back: “did you mean concentration camp?”. I clicked that I didn’t and instead it showed me some hats from concentration camps because it thinks it knows better. Google clearly isn’t everything.

    Keep it up,

    Steven

  2. Amazing captures! We never made it that high, in that hour that was given to us we were just strolling around. Like it is allowed in Petra, haha. And, girl, as the commentator above said it: invest in the good shoes! Your body will thank you! Anyway, great respect to you for pushing yourself so much out of the comfort zone!

      1. We were longer in Petra, on a guided tour, but when we were given time for own exploration it was only one or two hours, so we decided to take it easy. Petra is such a unique experience, I would love to return!

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