The church at Mount Nebo, Jordan
Photo by: Verity , Creative Commons
Also known as the “City of Mosaics”, Madaba, Jordan is the first city you will come to when you go on a trip south of Amman though the 5000-year old King’s Highway. Passing through the ancient sites of the town is definitely one of the most memorable trips you could ever go on.
Madaba is very much like all the other East Bank towns aside from one exceptional aspect: underneath almost all its houses remains a Byzantine mosaic– all at their finest. Many of these mosaics have been excavated and displayed in the town’s museum.
When you visit Madaba, one site you should definitely explore is the contemporary Greek Orthodox St. George Church. Its sixth century Byzantine Mosaic map shows the whole region from Jordan to Palestine in the north and then Egypt to the south. Another spot to visit is the Archaeological Museum where you can find other mosaics portraying the scenes of mythology and the daily pursuits of the ancient people between the 5th and the 7th centuries.
Madaba, Jordan was ransacked by the Persians in year 614 and the earthquake of 747 completed its ruins. For over one thousand years, it was abandoned, until a group of about 2000 Christians in 1880 settled here. From then on, the process of rebuilding the town started.