a VirtualTourist member
I am Australian and my travel buddy is from the US. We are staying in Amman for a few days and have a free day in the middle. We thought we might go over to West Bank to have a look at some sights. Do you think this is possible, or too much hassle with border crossings and hire cars etc. Alternatively we could go somewhere near Amman where we could see the West Bank. Is this even an option do you think? Thanks..
I know this is not what you are asking but i can suggest a good day trip. Visit Madaba then head for Mount Nebo where Moses saw the promised land and from there you have a beautiful view of the Holy Land.
If you take a look at the link below you will see that there are exit taxes to pay when leavin the West Bank or Jordan, and there seems to be many formalities, don't know if it would be worth it for one day, so perhaps you may consider an overnight stay.
A day trip is complicated and pricey. The King Hussein/Allenby bridge is notoriously long. Transport and crossing could take 3-5 hours, longer if you are questioned by the Israelis (i was 'detained' for 4 hours of questioning)
Beyond that, you'd likely have to go all the way to Jerusalem before connecting to transport elsewhere.
While it wouldn't be impossible to to cross the border to say "been there. done that", you won't actually accomplish anything.
The West Bank is only accessible via Israel, so you have to go through Israeli customs before you can visit. As mentioned above, this can be a long process, especially if you have any stamps from Israel's enemies in your passport, like Syria, Lebanon, Iran, etc. I would give myself a day just to get there, let alone get there and back. You could make it, but it's unpredictable and you could end up wasting a day of your precious time.
If you only have a few days in Jordan there's plenty to see there. It's an amazing country. I've been to Jordan and the West Bank and Jordan is much more interesting. Amman is nothing special, but you can go to the incredible Roman ruins at Jerash are easily reached. You could even make it down to Petra on a day trip if you hire a driver a leave early enough. It cost me 60 JD to hire a driver for the day to Petra and it is absolutely unmissable - a veritable wonder of the world. You should spend several days there, but if you only have one day spare go to Petra.
If you just want to see the West Bank you could take a trip down to the Jordan river and the Dead Sea. It's a maze of military check points down there, but you can get through and see where Jesus was believed to have been baptised, and there you can see the Israeli flag flying over the West Bank on the other side of the river. From the Dead Sea you will be able to see the shores of the West Bank on the far side. The Dead Sea is definitely worth a day trip as well, but I think Jerash, and especially Petra, are much more interesting. I hired a driver for about 30JD, but you could probably find other ways of getting there.