Walk around the magnificent Petra without having to get up from your chair.
You’ve probably seen the iconic façade of The Treasury in movies, and almost definitely on multiple Instagram feeds in the past few years. This was in large part thanks to the collaboration between Google and Queen Rania of Jordan, where a concerted effort was made not only to boost tourist numbers but to also help preserve the wonder and awe of the stone city for future generations.
And that’s exactly what they’ve done. But now, thanks to being in either quarantine, self-isolation or lockdown, multiple present-day generations also have the opportunity to digitally explore the ancient city and learn of the history and culture of its once-nomadic Arabian inhabitants, the Nabateans.
Although there is no substitute for seeing Petra in person, the benefit of digitally visiting the city is that it can be done in comfort and peace. Now, there is no need to suffer the stifling desert heat and contribute to the wasting away of its sandstone steps and walls. (Did you know that in the past ten years, some parts of The Treasury have receded by up to 40mm?)
However, the best part of the digital exploration of Petra is that you can go at your own pace, click back and forth as much as you want, and see the curiosities captured by Google’s Street View, along its journey on Queen Rania’s back.
From the Gateway To The Siq, through the mile-long gorge, past The Treasury, and up to The Monastery, viewers take a narrated tour using Google Street View to see the sites in spectacular detail as well as being able to learn of the historic finds and developments made over the years.
And once you’re done exploring Petra, check out the other offerings by Google Maps. For example, explore The Grand Canyon, climb Mt Fuji, go underwater at The Great Barrier Reef, or amaze yourself at Everest Base Camp, among many other digital explorations available.