Petra (Arabic: ٱلْبَتْرَاء, romanized: Al-Batrāʾ; Historic Greek: Πέτρα, “Stone”), initially recognized to its inhabitants as Raqmu, is a historic and archaeological metropolis in southern Jordan. Petra lies round Jabal Al-Madbah in a basin surrounded by mountains which kind the japanese flank of the Arabah valley that runs from the Lifeless Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba. The realm round Petra has been inhabited as early as 7,000 BC, and the Nabataeans may need settled in what would turn into the capital metropolis of their kingdom, as early because the 4th century BC. Nevertheless, archaeological work has solely found proof of Nabataean presence courting again to the second century BC, by which period Petra had turn into their capital. The Nabataeans have been nomadic Arabs who invested in Petra's proximity to the commerce routes by establishing it as a significant regional buying and selling hub.
The buying and selling enterprise gained the Nabataeans appreciable income and Petra grew to become the main focus of their wealth. The Nabataeans have been accustomed to residing within the barren deserts, in contrast to their enemies, and have been in a position to repel assaults by profiting from the realm's mountainous terrain. They have been significantly skillful in harvesting rainwater, agriculture and stone carving. Petra flourished within the 1st century AD, when its well-known Khazneh construction – believed to be the mausoleum of Nabataean king Aretas IV – was constructed, and its inhabitants peaked at an estimated 20,000 inhabitants.
Though the Nabataean kingdom grew to become a consumer state of the Roman Empire within the first century BC, it was solely in 106 AD that it misplaced its independence. Petra fell to the Romans, who annexed Nabataea and renamed it as Arabia Petraea. Petra's significance declined as sea commerce routes emerged, and after an earthquake in 363 destroyed many buildings. Within the Byzantine period a number of Christian church buildings have been constructed, however the metropolis continued to say no, and by the early Islamic period it was deserted aside from a handful of nomads. It remained unknown to the world till it was rediscovered in 1812 by Johann Ludwig Burckhardt.
Entry to the town is thru a 1.2-kilometre-long (0.75 mi) gorge known as the Siq, which leads on to the Khazneh. Well-known for its rock-cut structure and water conduit system, Petra can also be known as the ‘Rose Metropolis' due to the color of the stone from which it's carved. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Web site since 1985. UNESCO has described Petra as “some of the valuable cultural properties of man's cultural heritage”. In 2007, Al-Khazneh was voted one of many New7Wonders of the World. Petra is a logo of Jordan, in addition to Jordan's most-visited vacationer attraction. Vacationer numbers peaked at 918,000 in 2010, however there adopted a short lived droop throughout the political instability generated by the Arab Spring, which affected nations surrounding Jordan. Customer numbers subsequently elevated and reached a record-breaking 1.1 million vacationers in 2019, marking the primary time that the determine rose above the 1 million mark.