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Mount Nebo

"And Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho. And The Lord showed him all the land . . . " (Deuteronomy).

Located near Madaba, south of Amman, is Mount Nebo, the place where God is reputed to have shown Moses "the promised land". It was from here that the Israelites went to find their home after 40 years of wandering, though Moses himself was destined to die before he could make the journey.

Moses is thought to be buried near Mount Nebo, though no evidence of this has been found. Even for the unbeliever, this is a supremely quiet and calm location with stunning views of rugged countryside with the Dead Sea and the West Bank beyond. It is easy to feel you have arrived somewhere quite special.

The site of the memorial itself involves a short walk, as vehicles are not permitted. Apart from the amazing view there is a small church with mosaics, the largest and best known depicting various types of aminals and a striking bronze sculpture.

Aerial map of the Dead Sea
Our guide shows us Mount Nebo on a satellite image
Moses Memorial Church on Mount Nebo
The outside of the pretty Moses Memorial Church

Mount Nebo sculpture
A striking bronze monument stands outside the church
The promised land seen from Mt Nebo
 The view is just breathtaking. The Dead Sea can be seen in the middle of the picture with "the promised land" in the haze beyond it

Moses Memorial Church, Mt Nebo, Jordan
Inside the Moses Memorial Church and . . .
Mosaic, Mount Nebo
. . . the best of the mosaics on display

Modern mosaics

A stone's throw from the Moses Memorial is a workshop where mosaics are made, and a large display area where they are sold, together with textiles and other craftwork.We were given a short demonstration of how mosaics are made nowadays, and an explanation of the amount of work that went into the most detailed of them (presumably to justify the rather high prices, compared to the poorer quality mosaics available elsewhere). A high proportion of disabled people were employed in the workshop.

As always in the Arab world, a cup of tea or coffee was offered. If you have the money, this shop has the most exquisite craft offerings, which they will ship for you if you want avoid the need to pack large items.

Mosaic factory Mosaic making Mosaics on display

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