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Jerash, JORDAN

Jerash is located about 30 miles north of Amman, the capital of Jordan. The history of the city is a blend of the Greek/Roman world and the ancient traditions of the Arab Orient. From AD 350, a large Christian community lived in Jerash, and between AD 400–600, more than thirteen churches were built, many with superb mosaic floors. A cathedral was built in the 4th century. An ancient synagogue with detailed mosaics, including the story of Noah, was found beneath a church. The city flourished until the mid-eighth century, when the 749 Galilee earthquake destroyed a large parts of it. Then, subsequent earthquakes (847 Damascus earthquake) contributed to additional destruction. Jerash was then deserted until it reappeared by the beginning of the Ottoman rule in the early 16th century. Jerash has developed dramatically in the last century with the growing importance of the tourism industry in the city. Jerash is now the second-most popular tourist attraction in Jordan, closely behind the splendid ruins of Petra. Since 1981, the old city of Jerash has hosted the Jerash Festival of Culture and Arts, a three-week-long summer program of dance, music, and theatrical performances. The festival is frequently attended by members of the royal family of Jordan and is hailed as one of the largest cultural activities in the region. In addition, performances of the Roman Army and Chariot Experience (RACE) were started at the hippodrome in Jerash. The show runs twice daily, except Tuesdays, at 11 am and at 2 pm, and at 10 am on Fridays. It features forty-five soldiers in full armour in a display of Roman army drill and battle tactics, ten gladiators fighting "to the death" and several Roman chariots competing in a classical seven-lap race around the ancient hippodrome. The excavations conducted since 2011 have shed light on the Middle Islamic period, as recent discoveries have uncovered a large concentration of Middle Islamic structures and pottery. The ancient city has been gradually revealed through a series of excavations which commenced in 1925, and continue to this day. (WIKIPEDIA.COM)

It is such a beautiful place. Be sure to wear your most comfortable, flat shoes. DO NOT wear sandals. The ground is very uneven and made up of dirt. It's worth the 45 minute trip from Amman and a must see if you are in Jordan.

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