Petra – one of the most unusual and enigmatic cities. And one of the most popular
places of the Near East among tourists. The city is located in the heart of
the desert Vadi Ram in Jordan. It was build more than 2000 years ago. Petra
represents the value for ancient architecture and art admirer and is a legacy
of the ancient culture.
That amazing city is carved in the cliffs at an altitude of 900 meters above
sea level in the narrow Sik canyon.
believe that the city was built by Arabian tribes - the Nabateans, settled on
that land the third millennium BC.
Beginning with just a few easily defended caves in the cliffs, Petra turned
to an impregnable fortress city. However, by the 16th century AD, Petra was
completely forgotten and abandoned.
There were a lot of legends about that mysterious city lost among the rocks
and sand, and during the long period Petra was considered to be a fabulous city
where great treasures are hidden. That Petra legends excited minds of European
scientists and travelers since the Crusaders.
However, both the rock and the city could not be found indeed, or Bedouins specially
hid it from the stranger’s eyes but in the modern history Petra was found for
the first time just in 1812 by the Swiss orientalist – Burckhard who fraudulently
persuaded the nomads to show him the way to the city.
Since that time, that amazing place attracts historians, archaeologists and
For today Petra is the most significant attraction of Jordan listed as a UNESCO
world's cultural heritage.
Interesting facts about the Petra:
• Despite the fact that Petra has attracted increasing attention, no one can
say who, when and why built this masterpiece.
• During the whole period of excavations in Petra, none buried person was found
in its tombs.
• There are no two identical facades In Petra rock structures.
• Petra has the second name - the Pink City, because of the unique shade of
• Palaces, temples, tombs, ancient theater and other buildings carved in stone,
are found in Petra for to date. All that structures were erected in different
ages and still are well kept.
• Each year the level of rainfall is only about 15 centimeters in Petra. To
conserve water, the locals cut canals and reservoirs in the rocks.
• Several movies were filmed in Petra, " Sindbad and the eye of the tiger "
(1977, Dir. Sam Wanamaker), "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" (1989, Dir.
Steven Spielberg), "A Passion in the Desert" (1998, Dir. Lavinia Kurram) , "Mortal
Kombat 2: Annihilation" (1997, Dir. John Leonetti), "Arabian Nights" (2000,
Dir. Steve Barron), "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" (2009, Dir. Michael
• Since 2007 Petra is the New Wonder of the World.