Wonder of the World Petra

17 January 2021

Petra is without a doubt Jordan’s most valuable treasure and major tourist attraction. It is a completely unique city made by relatively unknown people: the Nabataeans. It is on the list of the seven new wonders of the world and an absolute must see in real life.

Centuries ago, the Nabataeans built a kingdom hidden in the mountains. They created a unique rock-cut city that would flourish for a long time in this secluded spot thanks to its ingenious water system. The Nabataeans were real art lovers and mixed their own culture with other cultures. For example, they liked to be inspired by the Greek, Roman and Egyptian architectural style. This unique mix of styles is reflected in Petra.

Until today, scientists are discussing Petra’s function. Was it a holy city where the main inhabitants were buried? Or was it a prosperous trading center? Fact is that the Nabataeans used the natural ravines and gorges to sculpture their temples, triumphal arches, tombs and houses.

The city was rediscovered in 1812 by the Swiss Jean Luc Bruckardt and since has become a popular attraction for travelers from all over the world. So much has been excavated that you can wander through the old city for hours. In reality, only 20% of the old city can be seen. Imagine the treasures that are still hidden underneath the rocks!

The most important sights of Petra


You journey through Petra starts at the Siq. This narrow gorge is the former main road to Petra and is over a kilometer long and about 70 meters high. The most beautiful part of the walk through the gorge is the last part when you walk to the most famous monument of the city: The Treasury.


The most famous and photographed monument of Petra is without doubt the Treasury of the Pharaoh. It is about 40 meters high and has imposing columns, niches and pillars. People always thought it was a temple, but recent research has shown that it is a royal grave.


The Monastery is the largest monument in Petra and probably was a temple. This monument is located on a mountain, an hour and a half walk from the treasury and famous for its location and architectural style. In terms of design, the monastery is comparable to the treasury, but larger. The door itself is already eight meters high.


These gigantic monuments probably served as tombs for the various kings of the Nabataean Empire. The monuments are huge, but due to wind and rain, parts of the facades and pillars have crumbled.


This was the main road of Petra which probably contained important buildings such as palaces, bathhouses and temples. The exact buildings are unclear, since most of it has been destroyed. A lot of research is still being done in this part of Petra.

Do you want to discover Petra in a unique yet unknown way, unlike all other tourists? Then start with our backdoor hike! This walk is always accompanied by a local Bedouin guide and can exclusively be booked through us. Want to know more? Please contact us without any obligation.

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