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Petra’s High Place of Sacrifice

The High Place of Sacrifice is located on a summit above the ancient Petra. The 700 steps climb (!) passes by two obelisks carved in the rock, each 6 m high.  They are possibly representing the two chief Nabatean deities – Dushara and Al Uzzah. Perhaps the obelisks are the reason the summit is called in Arabic “Zib Attuf” (English: “The place of the merciful phallus“). On a hilltop next to it massive walls of a Crusaders era fort can also be seen. It’s stones are possible recycled from a former Nabatean or Roman building that stood at the same spot.

The High place of Sacrifice is behind the fort and consist of a shallow rectangular pool carved in the rock, perhaps to collect rain water, and next to it an altar as well as a niche to drain blood of the sacrifice.  A Nabatean insciption from Madai’n selach suggest daunting possiblity that perhaps even humens were offered at this site:

abd-Wadd, priest of Eadd, and his son Salim, and Zayd-Wadd, have consecrated the young man Salim to be immolated to Dhu Gabat“.

Book a Private Tour to Petra

Petra is in the southern part of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. It is about 2 hours drive from the Israeli border crossing near Eilat, and takes 3-4 hours to explore.  A hike to the High place of Sacrifice is an extra 2-3 hours. 

Entry into Jordan also requires setting a visa.

Contact us for a proposal of a full day tour of Petra, with an optional visit also to Wadi Rum.

Points of Interest in the Area

  monsatery petra ad deir Ad Deir
wadi rum camel rideWadi Rum 
Petra Night Tour
Aqabah fortress Jordan flagEight Days Tour of Jordan