The stunning red-rock city of Petra has long been considered the jewel in Jordan`s crown, but this enigmatic country holds a wealth of hidden treasures if you dig a little deeper under the surface. Discover Jerash`s remarkable Roman ruins, marvel at the mosaics of Madaba, see the dramatic Wadi Rum lit by moonlight, read a book as you float in the Dead Sea, and explore rich, fertile landscapes and animal habitats at the Dana Biosphere Nature Reserve.
The Dead Sea
A natural phenomenon and the lowest place on earth at about 400m below sea level, a dip in the Dead Sea is the quintessential experience of any trip to Jordan. Known in ancient times as both `The Sea of Salt` and `The Sea of Death`, the Dead Sea lacks neighbouring water channels to replenish itself, so the water evaporates faster than the basin is re-filled, producing the highest salt-concentration of any sea on Earth. In fact, the salinity levels are so high that only micro-organisms can survive in its water. For people however, the salty water has many health benefits, `dead sea minerals`, for instance, purify and cleanse the skin.
The `rose-red city, half as old as time`, Petra was voted one of the Seven Wonders of the World in a recent world-wide poll, and boasts astounding natural beauty. With its name taken from the Greek word for stone, and established as far back as the 3rd century BC, the rock-hewn city of Petra is a phenomenal complex of temples, tombs, theatres, monasteries, tunnels, castles and forts. It was originally created by the ancient Naabateans as desert city to house their water supply. Petra lay undiscovered until the early 19th century, and has since been famously used as the location for an Indiana Jones film.
Featured as the backdrop for Lawrence of Arabia, this hauntingly beautiful landscape of mountains and knife-edge sand dunes truly feels like another world. Witness a desert sunset, feast on a sumptuous meal in a Bedouin camp and surrender to the silence of the desert at night. Memories of Wadi Rum are guaranteed to last a lifetime.
Dana Biosphere Nature Reserve
Jordan`s most impressive eco-project, this vast park ranges from sandstone cliffs at over 1500m to the Wadi Arabi desert at 50m below sea-level. Home to many species of plants and animals, the park is the perfect escape for hikers and nature-enthusiasts alike.