is a spectacular Nabatean city in western Jordan. With massive
fašades that have been carved entirely out of the existing red
sandstone, Petra's magnificent temples and tombs are like no other
religious buildings in the world, and the surrounding rugged
landscape dotted with historical sites are a hiker's paradise.
Perched on a hill at the edge of the Judean desert just 5 miles
south of Jerusalem, Bethlehem is the childhood home of the
biblical King David. It is also the birthplace of Jesus Christ and
has been a major site of Christian pilgrimage since the construction
of the Church of the Nativity.
A mountainous walled city Jerusalem is sacred to the three
great monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam -
which means it is sacred to more than a third of the world's
population. For Jews, Jerusalem is the site of the Temple, now in
ruins except for the Western Wall; for Christians, it is the site of
Christ's death and resurrection; for Muslims, it is the site of the
Prophet's night journey to heaven. Jerusalem is therefore a major
site of pilgrimage for all three religions.