Meet your driver at your Amman hotel, and travel by private, leisure air-conditioned vehicle to the River Jordan. On route, soak in views of Jordan’s barren landscapes, and pull up at Bethany Beyond the Jordan River, known as El-Maghtas in Arabic, the site on the eastern bank of the river where it’s believed Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. Meet up with a local guide, and take a tour of the riverbanks and key excavated ruins, learning how the site was sanctified as the place of
Jesus’ baptism by the Vatican and a visit by Pope John Paul II in 2000. Drink in the powerful sense of spirituality, and see the remnants of Roman and Byzantine churches, caves, wells, and baptismal pools. As you walk, listen as your guide explains why archaeologists believe that it was here that John the Baptist lived, preached, and performed baptisms. Hear more about this famous Christian pilgrimage spot and how it is held holy in all three major religions Christianity, Judaism, and Islam for being the believed site of the Prophet Elijah’s ascension to heaven. Afterward, reconvene with your driver and return to Amman, where your tour ends with a hotel drop-off. Please note: the Bethany in this trip should not be confused with Bethany in Jerusalem, where it's believed that Mary Magdalene lived and Lazarus rose from the dead.
Travel to Madaba, known for its exquisite Byzantine mosaics. After roughly an hour, arrive in Madaba and head inside Saint George’s Church with a local guide. This 19th-century Greek Orthodox basilica is home to the famous Madaba Mosaic Map, a 6th-century A.D. floor mosaic that depicts the ancient Holy Land and Jordan. Gaze at this masterpiece and its richly detailed renderings of Jerusalem, Jericho, the Dead Sea and other biblical sites as your guide explains how it was unearthed in 1897. Having admired the mosaic, drive to Mount Nebo, the hill where, according to the bible, Moses was not only granted a view of the Promised Land but also died. Take in the stunning views from the summit that extend over the Jordan Valley, and on a clear day, can stretch as far as Jericho and Jerusalem. Meet up with a local guide and go inside the excavated remains of the Byzantine church that once graced the hilltop. Here, archaeologists have uncovered a series of floor mosaics dating from between the 4th and 6th century A.D. Marvel at these intricate artworks with their still-vivid illustrations of peacocks, soldiers, horses and hunters, as your guide shares facts about their creation and discovery. After your visit of this marvelous Franciscan Monastery of Mount Nebo, return to your vehicle and make the drive back to Amman. Your tour ends with a drop off at your Amman hotel.
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