Wadi Al-Hidan is a valley located in Madaba Governorate, Jordan, 30 km from the city of Madaba. It extends at longitude 35.47 east, and latitude 31.33 north, as it follows the district of Malih in Theban District of Madaba Governorate. There is plenty of water in it, as it forms a torrential stream in the winter, which continues its path through it to an area called “Al-Malaki”, which is the meeting place of its waters with the waters of Wadi Mujib, cutting approximately 35 km to the mouth of the Dead Sea.
There are many types of wildlife and various animals in this region, including hyenas, rabbits, and the hippocampus. It is a refuge for most migratory birds due to the nature of its composition and the large number of water bodies in it. Today, the valley is considered one of the most important tourist attractions in Madaba Governorate.
Wadi Al-Hidan History
It is also believed that the history of the Hidden Valley in Madaba goes back to prehistoric times, as the first people to inhabit it were the civilizations of the Bronze Age, and after them were the Arab tribes that came from the Arabian Peninsula, such as the following:
The Al-Hidan tribe, to which the name of the valley was attributed, has become today one of the largest tourist destinations in the country, which is visited by millions of foreign tourists annually.
- Use boots and poles, and watch your footing. With a lot of elevation change, the route is challenging and beautiful. The trail has a short, slightly-exposed edge along stone-built steps right at the end before reaching Wadi Mujib.
- Be sure to have boots and poles, and if you have a heavy, loaded pack, be sure to be comfortable with a slippery descent. Make sure anyone attempting this stage is sure-footed and adventurous. It is perhaps the most difficult descent on all of Jordan Trail. The path going up to the plateau, however, has great footing.
- Try to follow switchbacks of donkey trails as much as possible
- Cross Mujib with sandals, and be careful not to get your boots wet. If hiking with a group, cross at the same place and unclip waist belt as current can be strong if water is high.
- Avoid getting too close Bedouin camps, and aim wide around and offer a greeting if nearby.
- Be prepared if your support crew isn’t able to arrive at the expected time. S
- Moderate shade behind boulders on last half of stage, if starting early, shade for most of climb
- There is 4Å~4 access above half of the way down to Wadi Mujib, as well as up on the plateau at the stage’s midway point.
- Most dirt roads that come down into the wadi are accessible to 4Å~4 vehicles only. Throughout the day, you’ll never be that far from a dirt road.
- Moderate amount of shade in the second half – boulders, overhangs and such. Plateau and first half of wadi. No shade elsewhere.
- Exposed edges – Be careful on a few short sections when descending, also along stone enforced paths right before the final descent to Wadi Mujib.
- Flash flood dangers – Crossing Wadi Hidan and Wadi Mujib; be careful not to camp too close to the water in the floodplain.
- Loose footing – Most of the route; see “Tips.”
- Dehydration/heat exhaustion – Much of the trail is exposed to the sun and can be very hot, especially at lower elevations. Be sure to cool off in the flowing streams!
- Bedouin north of Wadi Mujib – Some communities have advised hikers to make noise if passing by and not surprise them, especially at night.