Visit the Kingdom of Jordan
Amman (pronounced [ɑˈmɑːn]), sometimes spelled Ammann (Arabic عمان ʿAmmān), is the capital city of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, a city of 2,125,400 inhabitants (2005 estimate), and the administrative capital and commercial center of Jordan. It is also the largest city in Jordan.
Jordan, officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (Arabic: الأردنّ al-Urdunn), is an Arab country in Southwest Asia spanning the southern part of the Syrian Desert down to the Gulf of Aqaba. It shares borders with Syria to the north, Iraq to the north-east, Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories to the west, and Saudi Arabia to the east and south.
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Aqaba (Arabic: العقبة, Al-ʻAqabah) is a coastal town in the far south of Jordan. It is the capital of Aqaba Governorate. Aqaba is strategically important to Jordan as it is the country's only seaport. The town borders Eilat, Israel, and there is a border post where it is possible to cross between the two countries (see Wadi Araba Crossing). Both Aqaba and Eilat are at the head of the Gulf of Aqaba.
The town is best known today as a diving and beach resort. However, industrial activity remains important to the area, and the town is an exporter of phosphate and some shells. The town is also an important administrative center within the far south of Jordan.
The Dead Sea (Arabic: البَحْر المَيّت, al-Baḥr l-Mayyit) is a salt lake between Palestine and Jordan. It is 420 metres (1,378 ft) below sea level, and its shores are the lowest point on the surface of the Earth on dry land. The Dead Sea is 330 m (1,083 ft) deep, the deepest hypersaline lake in the world. It is also the world's second saltiest body of water, after Lake Asal in Djibouti, with 30 percent salinity. It is 8.6 times saltier than the ocean. Experts say that it is nine times saltier than the Mediterranean Sea (31.5% salt versus 3.5% for the Mediterranean). This salinity makes for a harsh environment where animals cannot flourish and boats cannot sail. The Dead Sea is 67 kilometres (42 mi) long and 18 kilometres (11 mi) wide at its widest point. It lies in the Jordan Rift Valley, and its main tributary is the Jordan River.
Wadi Rum (Arabic: وادي رم) is a valley cut into the sandstone and granite rock in southwest Jordan. It is the largest wadi in Jordan. The name Rum most likely comes from an Aramaic root meaning 'high' or 'elevated'. To reflect its proper Arabic pronunciation, archaeologists transcribe it as Wadi Ramm.
Petra (from πέτρα "petra", rock in Greek; Arabic: البتراء, Al-Batrāʾ) is an archaeological site in Arabah, Ma'an Governorate, Jordan, lying on the slope of Mount Hor in a basin among the mountains which form the eastern flank of Arabah (Wadi Araba), the large valley running from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba. It is renowned for its rock-cut architecture. Petra is also one of the new wonders of the world.
The site remained unknown to the Western world until 1812, when it was discovered by Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt. It was famously described as "a rose-red city half as old as time" in a Newdigate prize-winning sonnet by John William Burgon. UNESCO has described it as "one of the most precious cultural properties of man's cultural heritage." In 1985, Petra was designated a World Heritage Site.