Although much has been written about Petra, nothing really prepares you. It really does need to be seen to be believed.
Petra, chosen as one of the World Wonders, is without a doubt Jordan’s most valuable treasure and the greatest tourist attraction. It is a vast, unique city, carved into the sheer rock face by the Nabataeans, an industrious Arab people who settled here more than 2,000 years ago. They turned Petra into an important junction for the silk, spice and other trade routes that linked China, India and southern Arabia with Egypt, Syria, Greece and Rome
By the 16th century, Petra was completely lost to the West, and so it remained for almost 300 years. Then in 1812, a Swiss traveller named Johann Ludwig Burdkhardt persuaded his guide to take him to the site of the rumoured lost city. Secretly making notes and sketches, he wrote, “It seems very probable that the ruins at Wadi Musa are those of the ancient Petra.”
Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in order to preserve the area, all tourists’ facilities have been located in the town of Wadi Musa, next to the entrance of Petra.