Jordan is often referred to as the jewel of the Middle East and anyone who visits it will quickly understand why. Located adjacent to countries such as Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Israel, it is much more liberal, progressive and secure than some of its neighbors. It is the perfect place for those looking to explore the Middle East further. Tours to Jordan offer a unique opportunity to visit ancient cities, admire the magnificent granite cliffs in the desert, and even swim in the Dead Sea. Here are the most interesting places to visit in Jordan:
Amman is the capital of the country as well as the largest city, and the most important cultural and commercial center. It is also one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world. The first settlers appeared here in the Neolithic times, around 8500 BC. Over the centuries, the city has been inhabited by, among others, Assyrians, Persians, Macedonians and Romans, and the traces of their presence are visible everywhere in the city. Today, this thriving metropolis is one of the most liberal cities in the Middle East. In the heart of Amman, there is the Roman theater, which is the largest of its kind in Jordan, built in the 2nd century CE, and it could accommodate 6,000 spectators. Other important monuments from the Roman times include, the Temple of Hercules, built during the reign of Marcus Aurelius, and close by is the Archaeological Museum, where you can admire a rich collection of monuments from all over Jordan. It is also worth visiting the citadel, which is surrounded by massive walls and several mosques, built in the 8th century under Arab rule.
Petra is one of the great cities of the ancient world, mysterious and beautiful, which definitely deserves an honorable place in the ranking of the most interesting places to visit. In 2007, Petra was included in the new Seven Wonders of the World. The whole city is carved into the rock, and there is only one road leading to it, through the narrow gorge of Es-Sik. Petra, established over 2,000 years ago by the Nabataeans, was an important point on the Silk Road leading from Europe to China and India. In the Middle Ages, the city was abandoned as a result of numerous earthquakes and gradually fell into ruin. Petra was not rediscovered for the Western world until 1812.
There are many interesting buildings in Petra, including the most famous Al-Khazna, which is called by the Bedouins the "Pharaoh's Treasury". This multi-storey building was erected around the 1st-2nd century BC, and its purpose is not fully known. Some historians and archaeologists believe that it was the tomb of one of the rulers of Petra and his wife, but there are also opinions that it was a temple in honor of one of the gods. Other interesting buildings worth visiting are the Nabatean theater - one of the largest buildings in Petra, which can accommodate several thousand spectators, the temple of the god Duszara and numerous royal tombs.
In desert areas, there are sometimes dry valleys that fill with water during the rainy season, creating swift, wide, long and winding rivers. The largest form of this type in Jordan is Wadi Rum, which is located in the southern part of the country and is a desert valley known for its breathtaking scenery. During the prehistoric period, the area, just an hour's drive from Amman, was inhabited by many different cultures, including the Nabatean culture, which left their mark in the form of rock paintings, petroglyphs and temples. Currently, only Bedouin groups live here. Wadi Rum does not look like a typical desert, instead of vast dunes, you will find here sandstone mountains and high granite cliffs, and the landscape, according to many, resembles the surface of the moon. The biggest attraction of Wadi Rum is the unique rock formations and remnants of ancient cultures.
In the western part of Jordan, a short distance from the Dead Sea, you will find Mount Nebo, from where the biblical Moses was supposed to see the Promised Land, which, he was not allowed to enter with the tribes of Israel. At the dawn of Christianity, a sanctuary dedicated to Moses was established on the top of the mountain, which still operates under the protection of the Franciscan Order. There is also an archaeological park on the mountain. From the top of Mount Nebo you will have a fantastic view of the Jordan Valley and the nearby Holy Land, and with good visibility, in the distance you can see the walls of Jericho and Jerusalem.
The Dead Sea
The Dead Sea is the saltiest sea in the world and is the lowest point on Earth, surrounded by the beautiful landscape of the Negev desert. Geologically speaking, it is not a sea at all, but a drainless lake (which is explained by the fact that it dries up over the years). The sea was named dead because, due to its high salinity (22-36%), there is almost no organic life in it, but the water is used to obtain significant amounts of table salt and potassium. The unusual concentration of salt makes it easy for people who are completely unable to swim to float on the surface.
The waters of the Dead Sea are credited with extraordinary health and healing properties. On the one hand, water and mud heal skin diseases, and on the other hand, the highly oxygenated air in this area has a calming effect and has a positive effect on people suffering from allergies. Therefore, it is not uncommon to see hotel guests walking along the shoreline. According to legend, the ruins of Sodom and Gomorrah lie deep at the bottom. Unfortunately, this cannot be checked in any way.
With so much to see and do in Jordan, it would be a shame to miss out. Why not join us to catch a glimpse of this small country that has a great history, with more than 100.000 archaeological sites and some beautiful landscapes!
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