The Middle East is a region that is closely associated with ancient civilization and rich history. Two countries that come to mind when discussing ancient cities in the Middle East are Jordan and Egypt. Jordan is home to Petra, while Egypt boasts of iconic cities such as Luxor and Alexandria. These ancient cities have been the subject of countless documentaries, books, and movies, drawing millions of tourists from all corners of the world.
Petra is a historic and archaeological city located in southern Jordan. It was founded in the 6th century BCE and is widely regarded as one of the most precious cultural heritage centers in the world. The city earned the nickname, “Rose City,” in reference to the color of the stone out of which it is carved. Petra is famous for its elaborate temples, tombs, and its still-standing signature structure, the Al-Khazneh (The Treasury). This imposing structure has been associated with the Ophites, a secretive sect that flourished during the Roman era. The city was abandoned in the 7th century, then rediscovered in the early 19th century, becoming officiated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1985.
Alexandria is a city located on the Mediterranean coast of Egypt. It was founded by Alexander the Great during the Hellenistic period, becoming one of the most significant cities in the ancient world. Alexandria was notable for many reasons, among them its famous lighthouse, which stood for centuries as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The city is also famous for its awe-inspiring library, which was once the largest library in the world. Although destroyed by numerous fires throughout its history, the library represents a hallmark of human knowledge and the birthplace of modern scientific inquiry.
Luxor is a city located on the east bank of the Nile River in southern Egypt. It was once the seat of the ancient kingdom of Thebes, becoming a city of stunning temples, tombs, and palaces. The city has two major monuments which are referred to as the Karnak and Luxor temples. The Karnak temple is the largest religious building constructed by man, serving as a testament to the great power of its rulers. On the other hand, the Luxor Temple is famous for its majestic avenues of sphinxes, massive statues of kings, and for its grand courtyards. The city is also home to the Valley of the Kings, the burial place of pharaohs, and other royals.
In conclusion, Jordan and Egypt have some of the most incredible ancient cities in the Middle East. These cities burst with culture, history, and breathtaking architecture, symbolizing the grandeur of human achievement across the ages. They are essential milestones marking humanity’s journey through time.