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Hiring a car is an excellent way to explore the Dead Sea region. From the capital of Amman, drive south along the Dead Sea Highway, which clings to the Dead Sea’s eastern shore, and stop in at the many coastal resorts along the route. Short detours bring you to the historic sites of Madaba and Mount Nebo. Cross to the Palestinian West Bank to see the ancient city of Jericho, view such sites as Qumran and Masada, and pay a visit to Jerusalem.
The eastern shores of the Dead Sea are dotted with resorts that make it easy to take a dip in the famous waters, and to pamper yourself with a Dead Sea mud pack. Drive out to Madaba to visit St. George Church with its world-famous mosaic floor map, and climb up to Mount Nebo, where tradition holds that Moses gazed upon the Promised Land, and enjoy the unparalleled views across the Holy Land. Then continue south to the Mujib Nature Reserve with its dramatic canyon walking trails.
Cross over to the Palestinian West Bank to view the historic attractions of Jericho, including the Mount of Temptation Monastery, Zacchaeus’s Tree and the monasteries and Roman ruins of Wadi Qelt. Drive south along the coastal highway, stopping in at the Qumran Caves, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered by a Bedouin boy, and continue to the breath-taking clifftop stronghold of Masada, where Jewish zealots held out against a Roman army in one of history’s most famous sieges.