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Azraq Wetland Reserve

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Azraq Wetland Reserve

You might expect to find an oasis in the middle of a desert, but you surely don't expect to find marshes and reed-fringed bodies of open water. But that's what is waiting at Azraq Wetland Reserve, on the outskirts of the town of the same name.

Azraq is an important stopover point on global bird migration routes, and offers the unusual opportunity to see plenty of waterfowl in the desert. The wetland is just a fraction of the size it was just a few decades ago, as many of its aquifers are now diverted to send water to Amman. The work of the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature has helped preserve what's left.

A marsh trail runs through the reserve through high banks of reeds and paths trod flat by water buffalo. Hides have been built for birdwatching; the wetter months of December to April are the busiest months for feathered visitors.