The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, sharing control of the Dead Sea with Israel and the Palestinian Authority, is mostly covered by the Arabian Desert, although the north-western part of the country is part of the Ancient Fertile Crescent. During its history, Jordan has seen numerous civilizations, including such ancient eastern ones as the Canaanite and later other Semitic peoples such as the Edomites, and the Moabites. Other civilizations possessing political sovereignty and influence in Jordan were: Akkadian, Assyrian, Judean, Babylonian, and Persian empires. Jordan was for a time part of Pharaonic Egypt, the Hasmonean Dynasty of the Maccabees, and also spawned the native Nabatean civilization which left rich archaeological remains at Petra, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Cultures from the west also left their mark, such as the Macedonian, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman Turkish empires. Since the seventh century the area has been under Muslim and Arab cultures, with the exception of a brief period when the west of the area formed part of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem and a short time under British rule. At present, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is a constitutional monarchy with representative government, popilate mostly by Sunni Muslim with a small Christian minority.
Tourism accounts for a large part of Jordan’s economy, mostly with its ancient sites:
- Petra in Ma’an,it is one of the seven wonders of the world,it even took the second place, the home of Nabateans, is a complete city carved in a mountain. The rocks are colorful, mostly pink, and the entrance to the ancient city is a 1.25 km narrow crack in the mountain - called the Siq. In the city are various structures, all (except 2) are carved into rock, including the al Khazneh - otherwise known as the Treasury - which is now nominated by the New Seven Wonders organization to be one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. - Umm Qais, a town located on the site of the ruined Hellenistic-Roman city of Gadara.
- Ajlun, famous for the Islamic al-Rabadh Castle.
- Jerash, famous for its ancient Roman architecture, including the colonnaded streets, arches, Roman theatres, and the Oval Plaza.
- Amman contains the Roman theater, in addition to several museums, where one may find remains of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
- Al Karak contains an important castle from the times of Salah al-Din, known as Al-Karak Castle.
- Umm al-Jimal, the so-called “Black Gem of the Desert”, was once a town on the margins of the Decapolis. Rural and well to do, it was a fitting contrast to the surrounding busy cities. Its black basalt mansions and towers, some still standing three stories high, have long inspired poets.
- esh-Shobak Crusader castl, less than an hour north of Petra. Once called “Mont Real”. It dates from the same turbulent period as Karak. It is perched on the side of a mountain, with a grand sweep of fruit trees below. The castle’s exterior is impressive, with a forbidding gate and encircling triple wall. Despite the precautions of its builder, the fortress fell to Saladin only 75 years after it was raised. Inscriptions by his proud successors appear on the castle wall.
- Qusair Amra, one of the best preserved Umayyad Islamic period monuments and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its interior walls and ceilings are covered with unique frescoes, and two of the rooms are paved with colourful mosaics.
Suggested Jordan Discoveries
- PRIVATE ESCORTED JOURNEYS - Private Escorted Journeys in Jordan.
- CUSTOMIZED PROGRAMS - As specialists on this destination, we can prepare “the” specific itinerary you desire with the exact services you need. If you would like to have “your own” itinerary, contact us and advise us of all your requirements