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September 2, 2012

Madaba the mosaic city of Jordan

by swebackpacker
Small talk in the night in Madaba

My flight from Vienna in Austria arrived at 01:35 in the middle of the night at Queen Alia International Airport in Jordan. My choice for the night was Mariam hotel in Madaba. Madaba is only 18 km from the airport and located south west of Amman. This is a centrally located base for travelling around Jordan and even for a visit to Jerusalem.

The family-run Miriam Hotel is according to the official star rating a two star hotel. Rough guides says the hotel should have a three star rating and put some of the four star hotels to shame. This rating is because of all services and facilities in the hotel. I believe this is a three star hotel! Rooms and beddings are clean, there is a swimming pool with bar and restaurant, Wifi is provided and two computers at the reception for internet services. The most important service is Mariam hotels excellent rates for taxi tours to different sights in Jordan. We are talking of substantial discounts on taxi tours. The staffs at the reception desk have very good knowledge about Jordan. They can provide good advice about how to travel, make bookings at hotels, car rental companies and national parks. Miriam Hotel is located in the north of Madaba about five to ten minutes walking from the City Centre. Opposite Mariam hotel is the Jasmine Café with very good food and service minded staff.

Mosaic map of the Holy Land (Dead Sea and Jerusalem)

Madaba is small town with a population of about 250 000 people. I strongly recommend walking around the city. This is particularly important if you are thinking about renting a car and visit areas in the neighborhood. If you have been to different parts of the town, you will know there you are, then arriving by car and finds the way to the hotel.

Mosaic map of the Holy Land (Jordan river and Dead Sea)

The most important tourist sight is the map of the holy land in St George´s Church in the City Centre. One believes this Byzantine mosaic map was laid in the six century in an older church from that time. The map was rediscovered in 1884 during construction work for a new church. Other mosaic work can be seen in the nearby Archeological Park. The second most important mosaic work is in the Church of the Apostles. This is a very long walk from St Gorge´s Church but still recommended for two reasons. You will learn to find your way through the city and the mosaic is enormous and well worth seeing.

Viewing mosaics in St George Church Madaba

Closer view of mosaics in St George Churge in Madaba

Closer view of mosaics in St George Churge in Madaba 2

As you can see it´s all about mosaic work so why not pop into these craft men shops and see how they are building up these mosaic works. Leave St George church, turn left walk maybe thirty meters and turn right into the street there these craft men works. In the neighborhood is one of best restaurants in Jordan Haret Jdoudna. Local people drives from Amman to eat at this restaurant so it can be fully booked at weekends.

Mosaic work

Mosaic work 2

Finished mosaic work

In the near surroundings of Madaba there are many important tourist sights easily reach by taxi or rental car. Mount Nebo the place there Prophet Moses died. Dead Sea Panorama with a fantastic view of the Dead Sea. Ma’in Spa hot spring and spa complex. The incredible Herodes the Great Castle at Mukawir, the place there Salome danced and Herodes beheaded John the Baptist. If you visit Herodes castle you will most likely have the whole site for yourself and an amazing view over Dead Sea.

© SWEBackpacker, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material including pictures without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to SWEBackpacker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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