It was carved in the early 1st century as the tomb of an important Nabataean
king and represents the engineering genius of these ancient people.
The rock-cut capital city of the Nabataeans
became, during Hellenistic and Roman times, a major caravan centre on the trade route for incense of Arabia, silks of China and spices of India, as it lay on the crossroads between Arabia, Egypt and Syria-Phoenicia.
Once it was the capital city of the Nabataeans
, who were able to control the water supply, thus enabling this city to thrive in the desert.
It's hard to describe what it's like walking into the mouth of this incredible city which, 2,000 years ago, was carved out of the sandstone desert cliffs by a semi-nomadic tribe called the Nabataeans
Established around the 6th century BC as the capital of the Nabataeans
, Petra is an enduring symbol of Jordan as well as its most visited attraction.
The soaring facade is considered the masterpiece of the ancient city carved into the rose-red stone by the Nabataeans
more than 2,000 years ago.
Starting from the third millennium BC, Arab tribes of the Arabian Peninsula: Acadians, the Amorites, Aramaeans, the Nabataeans
, Elsafa n and Ghassanids came and settled in Gharia and other areas.
The red city built into sheer rock by Nabataeans
around the 6th Century was also made famous in the Hollywood blockbuster Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
The 'Rose Red City' built into sheer rock by Nabataeans
around the 6th century was also made famous in the Hollywood blockbuster Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
2012 marks the 200th anniversary of the rediscovery of this vast city carved into the colourful rocks by the resourceful Nabataeans
who settled here 2,000 years ago.
In exchange for protection, water and a time-out for rest and relaxation, the caravans paid taxes to the Nabataeans
, making Petra one of the wealthiest cities of the ancient world.
settled here 2,000 years ago and turned the city into an important stop for travellers following ancient trading routes.