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RECENTLY UPDATED! With more than 40 high-resolution images, maps and a detailed tour itinerary, this is the definitive guide to the ancient city of Petra in Jordan. (2015)

Travel guidebooks for the ultra curious, Approach Guides reveal a destination’s essence by exploring a compelling aspect of its cultural heritage: art, architecture, history, food, or wine.

Petra’s temples and tombs — carved into the sandstone cliffs of Jordan’s Negev Desert — are a sight to be seen. They stand witness to the greatness of the Nabataean civilization which thrived from 312 BCE - 106 CE. Just as the Nabataeans’ trading network brokered goods between East and West, its architecture bridged styles, yielding a creative mix of Mesopotamian (East) and Greek (West) traditions. It is yours to discover.

What’s in this guidebook

  • Comprehensive look at Petra’s art and architecture. We provide an overview of Petra’s art and architecture, isolating trademark features that you will see again and again as you make your way through the old city’s highlights. As part of this review, we highlight those features that were likely borrowed from Mesopotamian and Hellenistic prototypes. To make things come alive, we have packed our review with high-resolution images.
  • A tour that goes deeper on the most important sites. Following our tradition of being the most valuable resource for culture-focused travelers, we offer a detailed tour of the premier sites. For each, we present information on its history, a detailed plan that highlights its most important architectural and artistic features, high-resolution images and a discussion that ties it all together.
  • Advice for getting the best cultural experience. To help you plan your visit, this guidebook supplies logistical advice, maps and links to online resources. Plus, we give our personal tips for getting the most from your experience while on location.
  • Information the way you like it. As with all of our guides, this book is optimized for intuitive, quick navigation; information is organized into bullet points to make absorption easy; and images are marked up with text that explains important features.

In total, this guidebook profiles thirteen of Petra’s top sites for art and architecture. To help you prioritize your touring itinerary, we mark the absolute must-see sites with asterisks (*).

  • Outer Siq: Treasury (Khasneh),* Tombs 68 and 825 and Street of Facades.
  • Wadi Farasa: Broken Pediment Tomb, Renaissance Tomb, Garden Triclinium* and Roman Soldier Tomb.*
  • Royal Tombs: Urn Tomb,* Silk Tomb, Corinthian Tomb,* Palace Tomb and Sextius Florentinus Tomb.*
  • Jabal al Deir: Monastery (Deir).*

One of the benefits of eBooks is that we can easily update content and release new editions of our guidebooks. These updates are FREE for existing customers. Please visit for a list of recently updated guides and instructions on downloading the new version.

Compulsive (and compulsively informed) travelers, the Raezers are the masterminds behind the downloadable Approach Guides, which are filled with a university course-worth of history and insights for 62 destinations worldwide. WHY WE LOVE IT: The Raezers share our desire for deep, well-researched information on the wonders of the world.
- Travel + Leisure

The brilliance of Approach Guides is exemplified by the detail of information, as well as the clarity of explanation. You’ll find maps, floor plans, and my favorite part of Approach Guides: illustrated photos of Petra, with clearly outlined aspects of the architectural features we are learning about. There are also notes about prioritizing what you see, according to interest, and the time required to visit each one. Once again, Approach Guides has come up with an invaluable tool for learning about one of the world’s most interesting locations. Whether you intend to visit (in which case, this is required reading) or explore via armchair travel, I highly recommend this guide to smart travelers.
- Wandering Educators

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