Petra by Night

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Petra, Jordan

After a full day of Petra in the sun I had to chug coffee to have enough energy to head back for the Petra by night show.

I had heard enough from others to know this was something I should not miss.

Sure I’m no Dave from The Planet D but I do love night photography and in safe cities I have spent hours wandering the street plopping down my gorillapod to open the shutter.

I hoped I could capture the vastness and beauty of Petra in the darkness.

With the soft glow of candles, people wander through the canyon to the treasury where they sit and drink tea while listening to traditional bedouin music.

Afterwards they give you enough time to take some photos, even organizing a group flash so people can try to capture the structure.

But I hate flash.

So I tried to be patient and wait for everyone to take their photos with much dissatisfaction while my camera on its gorillapod was set to go.

Petra Treasury at night

I was the last person there.

Fortunately much of the staff remembered me from the morning and tried to shoo everyone else away so I could take a few shots of the treasury and then leave as well.

petra at night
petra Jordan at night
petra jordan by night

Wandering Petra at night alone was definitely a highlight, I may never be a professional photographer but I had fun all the same.

 Disclosure: I was a guest of the Jordan Tourism Board, they did not request that I write a favourable review or be one of the last people to leave the area so I could take as many pictures of this beautiful area at night.

Join the Conversation

  1. You may think you’ll never be a professional photographer, but these are some beautiful photos! Definitely reminds me how important it is to wait for the right shot. I love how you can see all the stars in these…I would love to experiment more with night photography as well, perhaps at the Arches National Park in Utah.

  2. Ayngelina, I don’t think you give yourself enough credit. These are incredible shots!!

  3. They really are beautiful pictures Ayngelina. I especially love the ones with the stars. They look great. Must have been a great experience.

  4. These are so atmospheric – worth the patient wait…

  5. Incredible shots! Love the dark color of blue with the glowing stars upon the sky.

  6. Well done, Ayngelina. You’re inspiring me to visit Jordan!

  7. These pictures are so beautiful. I’m on my way to Jordan !!

  8. One of my personal “gods” of photography, the late Galen Rowell, once said that much photography is simply waiting for the right time to get the right shot…..which you prove. Thanks for the vicarious journey!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Mine was to wait for people to get out of my way and beg the staff to give me just one more minute!

  9. The Travel Chica says:

    Great job! Also proves that if you are nice to people, you might get a great opportunity like this.

  10. Matthew Karsten says:

    Loving the stars over those cliffs!

  11. Jennifer Lewis says:

    Great Job!! I really enjoyed your photos. I’ve never seen Petra illuminated at night. Makes me want to visit, too. 🙂

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      It is really amazing at night and during the day. Although I would recommend a few days there so you don’t have to rely on caffeine to stay awake.

  12. Great night shots AB! Love the stars.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      You would love it there, so beautiful.

  13. Jennifer Adams says:

    Wow, just amazing! Thanks for sharing!

  14. Ayngelina, these shots are amazing! I love the ones of the stars!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Thanks Sebastian, it was really hard to choose!

  15. Office de tourisme de Jordanie says:

    Wow, your pictures are just extraordinary and wonderful.

    It’s just like we have to see it to be there.

    Thanks a lot for sharing them to us.

    Thanks a lot again.

    Office de tourisme de Jordanie

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I would prefer if you linked to the site from your Facebook page, I hope you understand.

  16. Pretty photos, as always. Love that starry sky. I do hope to make it there someday …

  17. Breathtaking! Looks pretty professional to me 😉

  18. awesome, it looks unreal!

  19. Great shots Ayngelina! Your patiences paid off, well done:)

  20. Great Pictures! The sky and stars look magical.

  21. Andi of My Beautiful Adventures says:

    Best photos you’ve ever taken! Bravo!!!!!

  22. Debbie Beardsley says:

    Beautiful shots! Your patience paid off. I can’t decide whether I like Petra better at night or day.

  23. Seriously stunning shots.

    If you aren’t a professional photographer, I don’t know who or what is.

  24. Not a professional photographer? You could have fooled me! These shots are amazing, especially the ones with the stars.

    Seriously beautiful.

  25. Love these night photos, especially the two at the top of your post. I haven’t tried nighttime photography, but now you’ve got me thinking.

  26. Flash is evil.:) Well done for not using it! Amazing location and great photos…

  27. Grrrl Traveler | Christine says:

    Gooorgeous shots. Loved the first shot. Tells a story in itself. Also the starry night shots… I’m envious. I’ve never been successful at getting stars shots.

  28. Especially love the first shot. There is something to taking the time to get the situation just right and compose the shot.

    Jordan has jumped to one of the top spots we’d like to visit now after all that I’ve seen from fellow bloggers.

  29. Your photos are amazing. Loved Petra but never had the chance to see it at night. Its amazing how you can see the stars from this part of the world. Stunning photos again.

  30. RenegadePilgrim says:

    Awesome photos! I thought Petra After Dark was a little bit cheesy, but I really enjoyed it. I wish I had been able to get such wonderful photos as you did!

  31. Superb photos.

  32. These are great photos! I am glad you have patience, I dont know if I would have had enough. It looks like it was worth it though.

  33. Oh how wonderful, Ayngelina!! I too love taking “real” night photos. The atmosphere is so precious and worth recording. 🙂

  34. The texture of the cliffs looks great! What size gorillapod do you have?

  35. Roy Marvelous says:

    Amazing photos AB! You keep making me think of Jordan 🙂

  36. Lorenzo Gonzalez says:

    Nice… amazing pictures Ayngelina, looks like I need to give you a +K on photography 🙂

  37. Wow, those are some incredible photos. They really make you dream away…

  38. DTravelsRound says:

    Gorgeous photos! I wish my camera could capture nights and stars like that!

  39. GringosAbroad | Bryan Haines says:

    Really great photos! The second photo (the treasury, I think) has some sort of illusion, if you scroll up and down on it at the bottom of the browser (not a habit, just discovered it by accident). The lines create a weird appearance that the photo is changing/moving (at least in my head). Really enjoyed this post! Thanks.

  40. Emily in Chile says:

    These photos are incredible! The pink in the third photo is blowing my mind.

  41. Great view of Petra that I’ve never seen before.

  42. Hello!! amazing photography! pardon me I shared some of your photography at our facebook page
    email me if you mind and i’ll remove it right the way,just wanted to share your art!

  43. Ayngelina these are nice pictures. Flash would have ruined it all. 🙂

  44. Erica Donolato says:

    Hi Ayngelina!!
    Congratulations these are AMAZING shoots, I really loved them! 🙂 I will be in Petra in January and I am so looking forward to see it after the sunset. Do you have any special tip or recommendation for me to enjoy this experience 100%? May I also ask you which lense and how many ISO did you use for the night pics?

    Thank you so much!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      The night pics were on 100 ISO and I used a gorillapod and 2 second timer to take the shots.

      Really my best recommendation in Jordan is my guide, Mahmoud. I am writing a post about him because he really made all the difference. He lives in Petra and is listed in Lonely Planet with his email and completely deserves the credit. He told me that he does tours but also if people just want to email him and ask questions he has no problem helping at all.

  45. Wow! Ayngelina, those photos are phenomenal. Absolutely beautiful. Really gorgeous.

  46. Cornelius Aesop says:

    I try and convince myself that slugging around a tripod isn’t worth it and then you had to go and show these awesome night photos. Great photos, they really are.

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