Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Umm Qais, Jordan

Umm Qais is a town in Jordan located on the site of the ruined Hellenistic-Roman city of Gadara. The town was also called Antiochia or Antiochia Semiramis and Seleucia. Gadara was a semi-autonomous city of the Roman Decapolis.
Site of the famous miracle of the Gadarene swine, Gadara was renowned in its time as a cultural centre. It was the home of several classical poets and philosophers, including Theodorus, founder of a rhetorical school in Rome; one poet called the city "a new Athens". Perched on a splendid hilltop overlooking the Jordan Valley and the Sea of Galilee, Gadara is today known as Umm Qays and boasts an impressive colonnaded streets, vaulted terrace and the ruins of two theatres. You can take in the sights and then dine on the terrace of a fine restaurant with a breathtaking view of three countries.


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