Everyone knows that Israel is “Promised Land,” but few know that most of the events described in the Bible are happening, in fact, in Jordan. The same is where Petra Jordan, one of the seven wonders of the modern world, one in which Alexander the Great founded the famous city Jerash or where he fought the legendary Colonel Lawrence of Arabia.
History enthusiasts Heaven Although a predominantly Muslim country, with 92% of the population follower of Islam, the country is of biblical origin. It comes from the Jordan River, which in turn comes from Dan Or, this being one of the 12 sons of Jacob in Genesis. In fact, in ancient times there were three kingdoms Jordanian territory mentioned in the Bible: Amon – which is now the capital Amman, Moab – Madaba area and Edom – in the Red Sea port of Aqaba.
Amman has existed for over 3,200 years, being called over time Rabath-Amon, Philadelphia – Macedonian conquest after the third century BC, for the Turks to change his name 400 years ago. Amman means “peace and quiet” and now has a population of about 5.5-6 million and nevel development with major centers in the Persian Gulf. Amman presents historical sights such as the Citadel, the Roman amphitheater or King Hussein Mosque, which dates from umayadă, 1,300 years ago.
All are Jordan territory, according to Jewish tradition, where Jacob has captured the angel of God, the place where St. Elijah was taken to heaven in a chariot of fire, where Lot’s wife was turned to stone after turned and saw Jehovah destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah or mount on top of which is buried the prophet Aaron, brother of Moses. Moreover, legends show that even Moses was buried on Mount Nebo, all of Jordan, on the top being a Catholic cathedral now. And Moses at the entrance of Petra is now “Spring of Moses”. According to biblical stories, it was here that, now more than 3,200 years, Moses with the rod in stone and a spring gushed to quench thirst Israelite people who just fled Egyptian captivity.
Regarding Christianity, on the Jordanian side of the Jordan River and is Bethany, where Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. Initially it was thought that the place is in Israel baptism, but we archaeological discoveries have disproved this hypothesis, the Jordanian side being found even place themselves near a church from the Byzantine period. Also nearby is Mount Nebo Madaba – the world capital of mosaics. They can be admired in all their splendor in the Byzantine church of Saint Gheroghe, which has over 1,500 years old.
Petra, one of the Seven Wonders of the World
But besides religious tourism, Jordan offers many other things to see. First it is the ancient city of Petra, carved into a canyon. It was the capital nabateenilor and was conquered by the Romans in 106, the same year that fell and Dacia Decebal. Petra was a city important trade routes in the East, located in a canyon, so Nabataeans built an almost impregnable fortress. But the Romans did this using another weapon: cutting the water supply. And in the desert water is vital. Treasure of Petra is so famous that appears in countless postcards and stamps worldwide. The city was abandoned in the seventh century, after a series of devastating earthquakes and remained unknown until 1812, when Johann Ludwig Burckhardt rediscovered Swiss one. Petra joined UNESCO in 1985 and in 2007 was selected to enter the new Wonders of the World rankings. Petra annually attracts thousands of tourists because of its unique architecture. The Telegraph reported in March , however, that the number of tourists dropped from 800,000 in 2010 to 400,000 in 2014 due to problems in Syria and Iraq.
Jerash rivals Palmyra If Petra joined UNESCO, the ancient city of Jerash not had this luck. Jerash was founded by Alexander the Great, but knew heyday during the Roman Empire, one of the best preserved Roman cities. Jerash is spectacular with its colonnade and is like Palmyra in Syria. It can not be, but UNESCO as a street cut in two old archaeological site. The ancient name of the city was Gerasa. The entrance gate was built by the Roman emperor Hadrian, and the city of temples and amphitheatres impresses with its through. In Jerash there was even a racecourse. The city is only partially excavated, clutching funds to be made further excavations. Amphitheatres in the city are now used for various concerts and festivals.
Aqaba is the main place for relaxation of Jordanians and Jordan’s only port, located on the Dead Sea. From Aqaba seen four countries: Jordan, Israel – across the bay being Eilat city, Egypt – Israel continuation beyond the shoreline and on the opposite side is Saudi Arabia. Note, however, the temperature: as the Dead Sea and Aqaba the temperature reaches 45 ° C. Desert hide and he wonders, such as the Wadi Rum desert pink, where people can take part and can spend a night safari with Bedouin. Also they can visit places where Colonel “Lawrence of Arabia” fought in the Arab revolt against the Ottoman Empire in 1916-1918.
What should I do before going to Jordan First, it should be noted that the local currency Jordanian dinar is much stronger than the euro or the dollar, is $ 1.5. Dinar rate is fixed and is linked to the American currency since the 80s. Also, proper ecclesial tradition, almost everything is negotiable. Air travel takes three hours and a charter will be introduced by the end of August. A journey to tick off one day in Amman, Petra, Aqaba, the Dead Sea and Wadi Rum costs about a thousand dollars.