• Full Name: First Bay North - Aqaba
  • Dive Site: Reef
  • Visibility : 10-30 meters
  • Depth: Surface to 30m
  • Snorkeling: available
  • Access: From shore/ From boat
  • Level: Beginner to advanced
  • Variant Names: First Bay

Military museums are not uncommon, but Aqaba has built what might be the most unusual of them all: an underwater military museum. The war machines were sunk in a depth range of 15 to 28 meters, stationed along the coral reefs imitating a tactical battle formation, creating an exciting underwater adventure, intriguing divers and snorkelers to discover more and more of the dive site and have a unique experience.The dive site is located just off the coast of Aqaba, South Beach in the Red Sea in an area popular with divers. The museum objects are decommissioned vehicles donated by the Royal Jordanian Army. The museum is currently made up of 21 military relics and expected to grow as more equipment becomes available.

The military hardware includes a U.K.-built Chieftain main battle tank (known as Khalid Shir in Jordan) with 120-millimetre tank gun, and an unarmed FV104 Samaritan tracked military ambulance. U.S.-made M42 Duster anti-aircraft gun with twin 40-millimetre Bofors guns, FV701 Ferret armored car, and a South African Ratel (Honey Badger) 6×6 wheeled infantry fighting vehicle are also a great addition to the “battlefield”. The most important piece of the collection: a Royal Jordanian Air Force AH-1F Cobra attack helicopter was built by Bell Helicopter in the U.S.

The site has an easy shore entry with the gently sloping sandy area.After crossing this narrow sandy stripe and heading from the only live Porites coral pinnacle present at 5 meters, you will reach a dense sea-grass bed, where a mixture of Halophila stipulacea and Halodule uninervis species can be found.

The site is home to a large population of Garden Eels, living in a vast expanse of seagrass slope stretching from just 6 to16 meters depth. The flat and sandy area gradually slopes to 24 meters where the bare reef starts, together with the military vehicles carefully placed here to avoid any damage to the scattered small coral patches across this particular zone. A well-developed coral garden starts further down, at about 30 meters which makes an unforgettable dive for more advanced divers.

All hazardous materials have been removed from the vehicles, which will slowly turn into reefs to benefit the environment. The new attraction already brings more species to the site and scuba divers seeking new thrills to Aqaba. It is hoped the museum will also help alleviate the burden of increased tourism on local, healthy coral reefs.

Field Gun M1 155mm
Field Gun M1 155mm

Field gun M1 155mm, American-made in 1939, it was used in the Second World War. Weight 13.8 tons, shell weight 45kg, shooting range 23km, the crew of 14 soldiers. This gun was put to use in the Jordan Armed Forces in 1962 and it participated in 1967 War, Al Karama battle in 1968, and also, in the Attrition War 1968-1970.

RATEL Armoured Infantry Carrier
RATEL Armoured Infantry Carrier

The Ratel is a South African infantry fighting vehicle. Production started in 1976, and it was the first wheeled infantry fighting vehicle to enter service worldwide. The Ratel was a simple, economical design which helped reduce the significant logistical commitment necessary to keep heavier combat vehicles operational in undeveloped regions. Weight of 18 tons and can carry 12 soldiers, armed with varied weapons from 90, 23 to 23mm guns. The RATEL entered the Jordanian Armed Forces service in 2002.

FERRET Armoured Car
FERRET Armoured Car

FERRET is a British-made reconnaissance armoured car which entered the service in 1952. It was used by many countries, especially in the Middle East region. Weight 3.7 tons, equipped mainly with a 7.62 mm caliber machine gun. The crew consisted of two soldiers. The vehicle entered in the Jordanian Armed Forces service in 1963 and remained in service until 1985.

Anti-aircraft, self-propelled, gun M42 40mm (Duster)
Anti-aircraft, self-propelled, gun M42 40mm (Duster)

American-made since 1952. Armored, tracked vehicle with dual-barrel anti-aircraft 40mm caliber guns. The crew consisted of four soldiers. M42 was in Jordanian Armed Forces service from 1965 to 1998 and participated in the 1967 War, Al Karama Battle, and also, in the War of Attrition.

Chieftain Tank (KHALID)
Chieftain Tank (KHALID)

British-made in 1966 and widely used in Gulf Wars 1980-1991. The Chieftain was an evolutionary development of the successful cruiser line of tanks that had emerged at the end of the Second World War. Weight 55 tons, the crew of four soldiers. It carries an L11A5 120 mm rifled gun and two, 7.62 mm caliber machine guns. The tank entered the Jordanian Armed Forces service in 1982 and ended in 2000 under the name KHALID Tank.

Chieftain Armoured Recovery Vehicle “The Crane”
Chieftain Armoured Recovery Vehicle “The Crane”

Recovery vehicle, Chieftain Brand, a British-made in 1967 to work with Chieftain Tanks in the field, used in recovery operations of damaged or technically broken down tanks. Weight 50 tons, the crew consisted of five soldiers. The vehicle started service in the Jordanian Armed Forces together with the Chieftain tanks in 1982.

SAMARITAN Armoured Ambulance
SAMARITAN Armoured Ambulance

Samaritan is a British made armoured ambulance based on FV101 light tank with a capacity of up to 6 injured soldiers. It used to operate in battlefields along with the other armoured vehicles. Weight 8.7 tons, with the crew of two soldiers. As an ambulance, this vehicle does not carry any weapons according to the International Laws.

Scorpion Light Tank
Scorpion Light Tank

The FV101 Scorpion is a British armoured reconnaissance vehicle, introduced into service with the British Army in 1973 and was withdrawn in 1994. Weight 8 tons and crew of three soldiers. Its primary weapon was a 76 mm caliber gun.

Bell AH-1F Cobra
Bell AH-1F Cobra

Developed from the Huey transport helicopter, the Cobra was the first purpose-built helicopter gunship to enter military service. It was the backbone of U.S. Army attack aviation from its combat debut in South Vietnam during 1967 until replaced by the AH-64 Apache in the 1980s and ’90s. Several versions of the Cobra continue to serve in the U.S. Marine Corps and the armed forces of many nations including The Royal Jordanian Air Force which has at least one squadron of Cobras currently in service.

Willys MB - The Jeep
Willys MB - The Jeep

The iconic Willys MB, commonly known as “Jeep” was a highly successful off-road capable, light, military utility vehicle, built-in large numbers to a standardized design, from 1941 to 1945, for the Allied forces in World War II. There were more than one million Jeeps produced in various versions and used for several military purposes as the over one tone vehicle was also capable of carrying different types of weapons. Jeeps continued service in different armies across the globe to the late ’90s, playing a significant role in different wars.

  • star rating  Great organization and great guides!Organization of the trip is great, little time for Petra.Compliments!

    Exploration193637
    7th January 2020

    star rating  Mohammad brings a sense of history to every tour while showing you things you've run right by countless times without stopping to look (up, down, over, around). Touring with Mohammad... read more

    O6778TJjenniferg
    27th January 2022

    star rating  It was only Aqaba in our plans for the one day on our cruise. But we wanted to see both Petra and Wadi Rum on that day. The tours organised... read more

    Bayan A
    8th June 2019
  • star rating  We thoroughly enjoyed the experience,
    The day went so quick but we seen and learned so much . Bus driver Reda was very friendly and helpful. our guide had so... read more

    KrugerMarkX5064OT
    9th April 2022

    star rating  I really liked the team of Wonder tours, they tell me everything about their programs, I'd chosen Wadi Rum and Petra, and honestly I felt so many unforgettable emotions... read more

    Marina K
    5th September 2019

    star rating  My wife and I loved this! We were fetched right on front of our hotel by our tour guide Mohammad. I liked his calm demeanour. Never asked us for a... read more

    G1237TEmartint
    22nd March 2022
  • star rating  We had an amazing day. Our booking procedure was very easy, just email and full payment in US Dollars on Arrival. All our questions were answered promptly and courtesly.... read more

    Ann B
    30th July 2019

    star rating  Thoroughly enjoyed the tour. A lot of time in the minibus but worth it to visit Petra. Our guide was very knowledgeable and was happy to answer all our questions... read more

    constantinescuc741
    23rd March 2022

    star rating  We did a day tour of Petra with Mohammad from celebrity concellation. He was extremely knowledgeable and answered all our questions about Petra and Jordan in general.
    We appreciated... read more

    Roz M
    6th June 2019
  • star rating  We always wanted to visit Jordan and it was difficult choice to pick the right operator. A travel agency in my town recommended Wonders Travel and Tourism, we couldn't be... read more

    Karles c
    14th April 2022

    star rating  I purchased Petra tour and the 3in1 tour from this agency in Tala bay. First of all, the agency is located in the resort, which is extremely big advantage to... read more

    alex2541256
    26th March 2022

    star rating  I would never thought i would write review as most time i never was impressed. Wonders Travel and Tourism changed my mind. i was amazed their professionalism, quick response (Yaseen... read more

    tessv350
    11th April 2022
  • star rating  What a treat our tour to Petra was. Great guide and driver.
    Very professional and knowledgeable. Very happy with the overall process and tour.
    The meal was delicious too.... read more

    avatar thumb SirlesT
    9th December 2022

    star rating  This is one of the modern wonders of the world. It is a must visit attraction in Jordan.I went on a daytrip to Petra and I wish I had more... read more

    stanis_awn491
    29th March 2022

    star rating  Contacted Mr. Yaseen 3 months before arrival, he replied to all my questions quickly so we booked our excursion with Wonders TT.
    Our ship "NAUTICA" docked half an hour earlier,... read more

    Hala Y
    8th June 2019
  • star rating  I've recently had a stay arranged in Jordan/Aqaba by Wonders Travel and I can strongly recommend this tour operator. Everything went smoothly and according to my wishes & expectations. Next... read more

    Rit A
    25th January 2022

    star rating  Wonders Travel and Tourism had came with a fantastic itinerary and magical experience for us. Varvara created the amazing program. Muhammad must be the best tour guide in Jordan, he... read more

    zo_j655
    21st April 2022

    star rating  We were visiting Jordan for the day while onboard Jewel of the Seas, my husband was unable to go due to the walking conditions so I was wondering how I'd... read more

    alih68
    22nd March 2020
  • star rating  We arranged this tour with Mr. Yaseen M. and he responded very promptly,
    We booked a full day tour from Aqaba to Petra. Pick up at 8.00 AM from the... read more

    Han G
    25th December 2019