News & Opinion | July 12, 2018 10:47 am

War Has Not Affected the Wonders Petra Has to Offer

Regional conflict has caused many to avoid the city.

The Monastery, Petra, Jordan. Built by the Nabataeans in the 1st century it measures 50 meters wide by approximately 45 meters high. (Getty Images)
Getty Images

The country of Jordan is surrounded by devastating war and violence. Just 40 miles away from Jordan’s northern border, the Syrian civil war continues to cause refugees to flee the country every day. Violence in Iraq is close to Jordan’s eastern border, and Jordan’s Saudi neighbors have started fighting in Yemen, while Palestinian refugees flee into Jordan from the west. However, the ancient city of Petra remains untouched. Petra is located almost a four-hour drive from Amman, and on the drive, you’ll find breathtaking views of mountains and ancient ruins like Shobak Castle. Man-made caves dot the surrounding area, The Daily Beast writes, making it feel almost like you’re in an Indiana Jones movie.

Petra is one of the most famous archaeological sites in the world. Built by the Nabataean Empire as early as 5 BC, it is the crown jewel of modern-day Jordan. Much of the country’s economy depends on tourism to the city. The archaeological site is spread out over 102 square miles and contains temples, tombs and a theater carved into the mountains. But scientists haven’t yet uncovered all of Petra’s history and secrets, and believe that up to 85 percent of the city still lies somewhere beneath the rock and debris.