Khirbet Tannour Temple


The neglected ruins of the 2000-year-old Nabataean temple of Khirbet Tannour are worth the hike up the hill for the view, if nothing else. A famous statue of Nike was found here, a copy of which is housed in the Jordan Museum in Amman; the original is in Cincinnati (USA). A statue of the goddess Atargatis (also currently in Amman) was also unearthed at this auspicious little hilltop.

There’s not much to see here except for column bases and the outlines of a temple courtyard with adjoining rooms. Despite this, most visitors will relish the windswept site and epic location.

The turn-off to the ruins is 36km south of Karak town, at the crest of the hill – a dam is clearly visible at the bottom. The turn-off is marked as ‘AT TA NO I QUI ES SI’, which isn’t a Latin inscription but a weather-beaten version of ‘At Tannour Antiquities Site’. The 1.5km access road is potholed, but you can park off the track quite easily. Walk up to the communication tower and the path up the hill becomes obvious.

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