Petra, Ma`An, Jordan

Home of The Holy Grail 

Image: Tiger Map

Your Journey Ends Only Where it Begins

Taken aback by the impact that this image that this one had on me, a Bing image search left us surprised to learn just how far back the history of this village stretched—even by Spanish standards:
 Established by the Nabataeans around 312 BC, Petra has persisted as an iconic location, and one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. Also known as the Rose City, it has inspired countless travelers and adventurers to experience it with their own senses. You may also recognize it as a setting from "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade", from a scene where Harrison Ford's character walks into a temple which houses the Holy Grail.
Petra (Arabic: البتراء, Al-BatrāʾAncient Greek: Πέτρα), originally known as Raqmu, is a historical and archaeological city in southern Jordan. Petra lies on the slope of Jabal Al-Madbah in a basin among the mountains which form the eastern flank of Arabah valley that run from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba. Petra is believed to have been settled as early as 9,000 BC, and it was possibly established in the 4th century BC as the capital city of the Nabataean Kingdom. The Nabataeans were nomadic Arabs who invested in Petra's proximity to the trade routes by establishing it as a major regional trading hub.[3]
The trading business gained the Nabataeans considerable revenue, and Petra became the focus of their wealth. The earliest recorded historical reference to the city was when an envious Greek dynasty attempted to ransack the city in 312 BC. The Nabataeans were, unlike their enemies, accustomed to living in the barren deserts, and were able to repel attacks by utilizing the area's mountainous terrain. They were particularly skillful in harvesting rainwateragriculture and stone carving. Petra flourished in the 1st century AD when the famous Khaznehstructure–believed to be the mausoleum of the Nabataean King Aretas IV–was constructed, and its population peaked at an estimated 20,000 inhabitants.[4]
Petra fell to the Roman Empire's troops who annexed and renamed the kingdom to Arabia Petraea in 106 AD. Petra's importance declined as sea trade routes emerged, and after a 363 earthquake destroyed many structures. The Byzantine Era witnessed the construction of several Christian churches, but the city continued to decline, and by the early Islamic era became an abandoned place where only a handful of nomads grazed goats. It remained unknown to the world until it was rediscovered in 1812 by Johann Ludwig Burckhardt.[5]
The city is famous for its rock-cut architectureand water conduit system. Another name for Petra is the Rose City due to the color of the stone out of which it is carved.[6] It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1985. UNESCO has described it as "one of the most precious cultural properties of man's cultural heritage".[7] Petra is a symbol of Jordan, as well as Jordan's most-visited tourist attraction. Tourist numbers peaked at 1 million in 2010, the following period witnessed a slump due to regional instability. However, tourist numbers have picked up recently, and around 600,000 tourists visited the site in 2017.
 Source: The Asia Collective

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