The site of John the Baptist's settlement at Bethany Beyond the Jordan, where Jesus was baptized, has long been known from the Bible (John 1:28 and 10:40) and from the Byzantine and medieval texts.
Today, the Baptism Site at Bethany beyond the Jordan River, maintains it position as one of the most significant sites in Jordan historically, and for Christianity specifically as part of the pilgrimage routes. The site was recognized officially by the vatican and the majority of Christian denominations since 2000, and was nominated in 2014 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site has now been identified on the east bank of the Jordan River, in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and is being systematically surveyed, excavated, restored, and prepared to receive pilgrims and visitors. Bethany Beyond the Jordan is located half an hour by car from Amman.
The Bethany area sites formed part of the early Christian pilgrimage route between Jerusalem, the Jordan River, and Mount Nebo.
The area is also associated with the biblical account of how the Prophet Elijah (Mar Elias in Arabic) ascended to heaven in a whirlwind on a chariot of fire.