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Hidden treasure

Apr 23,2014 - Last updated at Apr 23,2014

Since the dawn of history, human beings have marked their daily life, arts, concerns, hopes and dreams on surrounding rocks.

These markings retaining memories of the past are known as “rock art” or “parietal art”.

In recent years, there has been increasing interest in the role different kinds of rock art could play in the tourism industry.

Recent developments in geo-tourism (tourism with a geological purpose) and cultural tourism have heightened the need to promote rock art as a significant tourist attraction.

Jordan has played an outstanding role in the history of mankind and represents a part of the area that is considered the cradle of civilisations.

A huge amount of rock art was produced on its cliffs, caves, ground surfaces and boulders. Eastern Jordan has abundant artworks produced in different contexts, particularly the ancient north Arabian (Safaitic and Thamudic).

Rock art could be a distinctive tourism product that could attract a new segment of tourists to Jordan, such as geo-tourists. 

It could bring economic and social benefits to the remote areas in Jordan and generate new employment opportunities for the communities adjacent to the sites. 

Sure, such sites need appropriate infrastructure and superstructure, and interpretation at visitor centres. Marketing and promotion campaigns should include the distinctive rock art of Jordan. The media can raise awareness about such artworks.

Mamoon Allan,

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