EasyJet is to return to Jordan with winter services to the Red Sea port of Aqaba, starting in November.
The airline, which dropped its flights from the UK to the Jordanian capital Amman in 2014 after three years, will operate to Aqaba from London Gatwick and Berlin.
Flights will depart from Gatwick every Saturday until March 23, 2019.
The Jordan Tourism Board said the flights will open up the historic port city on the Red Sea’s Gulf of Aqaba to travellers from the UK.
Aqaba’s attractions include its beaches, snorkeling and scuba diving, plus access to the south of the country, including the famous city of Petra and the desert landscapes of Wadi Rum.
UK visitor numbers to Jordan were up 7% last year over 2016.
Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Lina Annab said: “This new partnership with easyJet is very exciting. We’re very happy to see easyJet operating in the Kingdom and we see this as a long term collaboration between Jordan and one of the world’s most renowned low-cost carriers.
“This collaboration will contribute towards increasing the number of tourists to Jordan’s Golden Triangle (Aqaba, Petra and Wadi Rum) and we’re working together to increase the number of routes into Aqaba with easyJet over the next few years.
“This is yet another step towards making Jordan as accessible as possible for tourists from around the globe which is a key component in the Kingdom’s plan for continued growth and development.
“We’ve been fortunate to see tourism numbers experience great growth over the past couple of years and we have our sights set on continuing that growth through partnerships with airlines and the public and private sectors.”
Jordan Tourism Board MD Abed Al Razzaq Arabiyat said: “The two new easyJet-operated routes to Aqaba will have a vital role in making Aqaba an accessible destination on its own. Aqaba, the warm gem by the Red Sea, offers a stunning seaside destination with its rich underwater coral reefs and a unique swimming experience adorned with a picturesque mountainous backdrop.
“Kilometers away, one can entertain their senses in the mesmerising beauty of time-defying stone-carved city of Petra, as well as Wadi Rum, Hollywood’s number one natural replica of planet Mars. This is a smart step that will eventually turn Aqaba and its neighboring touristic attractions into a top-of-mind escape during the winter days of Europe, which will reflect positively on Jordan’s economic status quo.”