A short ride from Madaba, Mount Nebo should certainly be included in any trip to the famed city of mosaics. It is only when you walk to the end of the rock formation on which it is constructed, that you appreciate its location which is dramatic. Suddenly, below your feet a landscape opens up with barrenness, with the possibility to see the Dead Sea and look far into the West Bank.
The view is not the main attraction of Mount Nebo, though. Its true treasure lies within the building, reconstructed by the Franciscans who bought the place in the 1930s and excavated the ruins of a 6th century church. By the way, the place has been referred to in around 900 BCE. As with other churches of that period (see elsewhere on this site), the church was once full of mosaics, and nowadays it is still possible to see a large number of them.
The church was built here in memory of Moses, who walked up this mount and died here. There is a monument to his memory, and a modern monument erected by John Paul II in 2000. The mosaics depict such human and apparently eternal things like wine-making and hunting, with many images of animals and trees. When I stepped outside and enjoyed the view once more, I could not help but think about the fact that the view on that Holy Land below has not changed much over the centuries, no matter its sad history.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Mount Nebo (Jordan). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Mount Nebo. Read more about this site.