Jordan is relatively a very small country with a total land area of 96,000 sq km. Although most of the area is made up of desert, it has three separate climatic zones, namely, the Jordan valley, Mountain Heights Plateau, and the Desert Region. Strictly speaking, the weather in Jordan consists of 4 seasons: autumn, winter, spring, and summer.
A majority of the tourists take to the hills, mountains, and plateaus which lie on the western edge of the country and the Jordan Valley, which lies near the Dead Sea. Jordan is a very sunny country which enjoys sunshine of more than 300 days in a year. The weather is very dry and sunny from May to October and there is no rainfall during this period. Summers are hot, but quite pleasant due to the low humidity of the mountain heights. The temperatures during the day do not exceed 36 C while the nights are extremely cool and pleasant. The average day time temperature is around 32 C. The summers in the Jordan Valley can be extremely hot with the day temperatures hovering in the forties. The weather in Aqaba is similar to Jordan Valley, but with lesser rainfall.
Rainfall in the desert averages at 120 mm year, while the mountainous regions receive rains ranging from 300 to 600 mm a year. The highland plateau has more rainfall than the rest of the country. Variations in elevation of the land play a prominent part in changing the weather patterns in the country. Some higher reaches of the mountains which are more than 1500 meters high receive a rainfall exceeding 600 mm. The rainy season begins at the end of November and continues till the month of March. The coldest months of the year are December and January, where the average winter temperature is about 13 C, but it can drop to even 5 C. In areas which are at high altitudes of 1000 meters or more, there is a likelihood of snowfall.
The weather in western Jordan has a hot, dry summer and cool wet winter apart from a couple of transitional seasons. One thing should be borne in mind that regional variations in climate do exist. You will find that about 75% of the country has a desert climate with marked variations between the day and night temperatures. The temperatures of the northern Jordan Valley are extremely suitable for farming as these regions are consistently warm throughout the year. Moreover, these regions enjoy higher rainfalls in winter. Unlike the northern region, the southern valley is generally hot and dry.
The weather conditions in the northern plateau, stretching from the north of Jordan to Amman, have a Mediterranean type of climate, but the weather is cooler here because of the higher elevations. The southern plateau has very little rainfall. The Eastern Desert exhibits severe desert climate and harsh conditions prevail here. The day temperatures can exceed 40 C, while the nights can be very cold and windy.
The worst type of weather is brought about by hot, dry winds from Arabia, which is called the ‘Khamsin’. They are likely to blow in early or late summer and last for a day or two. It is a phenomenon that affects North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. It is dusty, hot, cyclonic type of wind that originates in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco and North Algeria.
Your requirements of clothes will vary depending on the weather and climatic changes. You are advised to wear lightweight clothes, preferably cotton, between May and September. Thick winter wear is advised for the cold winters. You may require some warm clothes for cool summer evenings. You would require rainwear from November to April. One thing is for sure – you will enjoy the mild autumn and spring weather. You see flowers everywhere and the hillsides are a riot of colors.