Located just 50km north of
Amman, Jerash is said to be the largest and best preserved Roman city
outside Italy. At the beginning of the 3rd century, it housed some 15,000
people. Visiting Jerash is a must for anyone studying the history of the Romans.
The preserved site, which
is the old city centre, covers a large area and includes several long
collonaded streets complete with pavements, an amphitheatre and a huge
At one point we could hear the tune Scotland the Brave played
on bagpipes mingling with the ever-present call to prayer, a most bizarre
experience. Later we found the source - retired members of the British-trained
Royal Jordanian Army raising funds for their colleagues by performing
in the amphitheatre (see below).A replica hippodrome stages frequent chariot races, though there was
no show when we visited. In late July and early August the Jerash Festival
sees the site teeming with performers and visitors.
Facilities for the visitor include an excellent and friendly restaurant
with a fixed-price buffet, a bar, a visitors' centre and a mini-souq for