Wadi Rum

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PetraWadi RumGiordania

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Wadi Rum (005)
Wadi Rum (005)
29° 32′ 13″ N, 35° 25′ 14″ E

Wadi Rum also known as The Valley of the Moon is a valley cut into the sandstone and granite rock in southern Jordan 60 km to the east of Aqaba; it is the largest wadi in Jordan. Wadi Rum is Arabic for Roman Valley,or “Valley of the Romoioi”, as the Greeks were also called in the early Byzantine era by Arab people, probably referring to Christian Byzantine monastic or ascetic communities in the area, for which they were also known as “monks of the desert”, before the expansion of the Rashidun Caliphate.

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Wadi Rum has been inhabited by many human cultures since prehistoric times, with many cultures–including the Nabateans–leaving their mark in the form of rock paintings, graffiti, and temples. In the West, Wadi Rum may be best known for its connection with British officer T. E. Lawrence, who passed through several times during the Arab Revolt of 1917–18.

The area is centered on the main valley of Wadi Rum. The highest elevation in Jordan is Jabal Umm ad Dami at 1,840 m high, located 30 km south of Wadi Rum village. It was first located by Difallah Ateeg, a Zalabia Bedouin from Rum. Jabal Ram or Jebel Rum (1,734 m above sea level) is the second highest peak in Jordan and the highest peak in the central Rum, rising directly above Rum valley, opposite Jebel um Ishrin. Khaz’ali Canyon in Wadi Rum is the site of petroglyphs etched into the cave walls depicting humans and antelopes dating back to the Thamudic times.

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