Hiking Middle Eastern History on the New Jordan Trail; Nancy Bouchard; Backpacker

Jordan – Petra

Star-shot skies over vast deserts, fertile valleys, and a footpath that follows some of humanity’s oldest trade routes: The new, 400-mile Jordan Trail offers a month-long immersion in the Middle East.

It took 20 years to formalize the Jordan Trail, but the route has been in use since the Old Testament times.

To walk across some–or all–of the path offers the chance to follow ancient trade routes between villages and track the course of history. Travelers pass through colonnades and under the arches of countless Greco-Roman ruins, but also an Islamic castle, and the carved-in-stone city of Petra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The route starts in the northwest corner of the country near the Sea of Galilee. The first section is well marked and southbound travelers pass villages with home-stay options and wilderness camping at the edges.

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