Jordan – a country in Southwest Asia. The capital – Amman. According to the latest population of slightly more than 6 million people. Official language – Arabic. May 25, 1946 the state gained independence from Britain. Major cities and resorts – Zarqa, Irbid, Aqaba.
The state borders with Syria, Iraq, Palestine, Israel, Saudi Arabia; partially meets the Red and Dead seas. On the border with Israel runs the sacred river Jordan.
On the territory of Jordan is one of the seven new wonders of the world – Petra. This city was once the capital of the Nabataean kingdom and preserved a rich architectural and cultural heritage. Another ancient town, which flourished in the Roman era, it Jerash.
About 95% of the population are Arabs. Also, Jordan’s many migrants from Libya and Iraq. The state religion is Islam (Sunni). According to the state system adopted dual monarchy. According to the administrative division should be allocated 12 regions (governorates), each of which has its own governor appointed by the king.
The climate is always warm and dry, rainfall is scarce. Most precipitation in the north-west of the country due to the proximity to the Mediterranean Sea. The best time to visit – spring and autumn. National currency – Jordanian Dinar.
The ancient city of Petra
Jordan Sights. The ancient city of Petra – a unique rock city, the main attraction of Jordan. This ‘pink’ town so popular that hundreds of thousands of tourists visit it every year. About him say: “It is as old as time itself.”
In fact this unusual ancient city indicates mention of it in the Bible. The first settlement in the city dates back to the existence of the state Edom, which was about 2-4 thousand years ago. Later it formed Nabataean Kingdom in this territory, whose capital was Petra.
Petra uniqueness lies in the fact that it is located at an altitude of 900 meters above sea level in a narrow canyon. This remote place was chosen by Arab nomads to protect. And even the famous Roman generals could not get there through a narrow gorge. The original name of the city was a Sela, which in local dialect means “stone”. Later, the Greeks renamed it in his own way, preserving value.
From I century AD Petra nevertheless became part of the Roman Empire. Local craftsmen erected buildings of incredible beauty into the rock of red sandstone. In order to escape from drought and torrential rains proper use they constructed dams, cisterns and aqueducts.
Because of what happened in the IV century BC earthquake the city was in ruins, there were only a few nomads. And since the VI century, Petra and all was abandoned until 1812, when it was discovered the Swiss explorer Burckhardt IL. He had long wanted to find a lost city in the rocks in the Middle East. Pretending to be a merchant, he was able to find out from the Bedouins, where the Nabatean ruins.
In fact, all the buildings of Petra are 3 periods: Edom, Nabataean and Roman. What it has been built after the VI century almost not extant. According to some reports, in the XII century in Petra hid Teutonic Knights. I wonder what this mysterious city until the end and has not been studied. In modern times Petra has often been the place of famous movie filming.
Objects that are available to tourists include the Siq gorge, Treasury of Pharaoh, the 80-meter high cliffs with ancient inscriptions and carved limestone niches for statues. One of the most popular attractions of the city – Al Khazneh (Treasury of the Pharaohs). This huge temple-mausoleum, supposedly built in the II century BC
Other outstanding construction – Monastery Ad-Deir. Its wide walls in places carved crosses, indicating that it once housed a Christian church. No less interesting are two Roman buildings – Palace and urn tomb. In the city hundreds of rocky spaces, facades which can convey the story of this ancient region.
Before Peter can be reached by tour bus or a taxi for 3 hours from Amman and for 1 hour 50 minutes from Aqaba. From Taba, Eilat and Sharm el-Sheikh are regularly organized day trips to places of interest.
Baptism Site of Jesus Christ
Baptism Site of Jesus Christ – backwater Yardenit, formed at the confluence of the sacred Jordan River to the Sea of Galilee, the Jordan, where Jesus was baptized according to the legend. Many Christians of the world tend to go through the rite of baptism in these waters.
The exact location of Bethabara (place of baptism of the Christian prophet according to the Gospel) were not known, since it is not changed again for the river for 2,000 years. For a long time the pilgrims considered this place the border Qasr el-Yahud. It was there that the water of the Jordan River merged with the Dead Sea.
Because of its inconvenient location on the border of the two states Qasr el-Yahud become less affordable over time. For this reason, in 1981, he recognized the place of baptism became Yardenit. In fact, this whole village in northern Israel with a complex of buildings, facilities and souvenir shops. A few kilometers away is the town of Tiberias (Tiberias).
Directions to the secret places is carried on the longest Israeli highway number 90. In 2011, the former place of baptism had been restored, but Yardenit remained the most visited pilgrimage site. Every year on January 19 thousands of Christians from all over the world come to plunge into the waters of the sacred bay.
For visitors in the complex has all the amenities: parking, changing rooms, restaurants, rental of special clothing for baptism. In the waters of the Gulf are found carp, catfish and tilapia. They literally precipitated by tourists who generously feed the fish by hand. To get to the places of pilgrimage can be on a bus in Jerusalem.
Recently, archaeologists discovered an abandoned early Christian church have long since dried up banks of the sacred river. According to them, this place is Bethabara. Now this area is a Jordanian village of Wadi al-Harrar, but the river is no longer there.
Wadi Rum Desert
Jordan Sights. Wadi Rum Desert – stony desert in Jordan; amazing place, almost untouched by civilization. This is the most unusual and mysterious desert in the world, because instead of sand dunes, on the territory of towering giant rocky mountains, sometimes reaching 1750 m in height.
Today, many travelers want to visit this deserted place with vast expanses, even to enjoy the views of the giant canyons and explore petroglyphs left by different cultures.
Sometimes this wilderness called Valley of the Moon. It takes more than 74 thousand hectares of land on which the canyons give way to valleys and semi-deserts. The highest mountain here Um al-Dami (1830 m). Differences of temperature are so great that you need to have a warm jacket or coat. If the day the heat reaches 32 degrees Celsius, then in the evenings and at night, it may be only 4 degrees.
Today, Wadi Rum is a part of the National Park of Jordan. Her long chosen rock climbers and safari tours and amateur ballooning massively come here from Aqaba or Amman. Many tourists are attracted by the idea to spend the night under the starry sky of the desert and meet the sunset here.
Geographically, the desert is located 60 km from Aqaba, and not far from the ancient city of Petra. The area is patrolled by members of Wadi Rum reserve. Outwardly, they look like a Bedouin, dressed in a long robe and khakis in a traditional headdress of red and white. Within the desert there is a campsite with amenities and a campground.