Photo Gallery: New 7 Wonders vs. Ancient 7 Wonders

Photo Gallery: New 7 Wonders vs. Ancient 7 Wonders
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Petra, Jordan

Perched on the edge of the Arabian Desert, Petra was the capital of the Nabataean kingdom of King Aretas IV (9 B.C. to A.D. 40).

Petra is famous for its many stone structures such as a 138-foot-tall (42-meter-tall) temple carved with classical facades into rose-colored rock. The ancient city also included tunnels, water chambers, and an amphitheater, which held 4,000 people.

The desert site wasn't known to the West until Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt came across it in 1812.

Jordan has taken the New7Wonders competition seriously. Petra is an important attraction in a country where tourism has recently suffered due to troubles in the Middle East region, particularly in neighboring Iraq.

The Jordanian royal family backed a campaign promoting Petra's selection.

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—Photograph by Richard Nowitz/National Geographic/Getty Images
 
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