Jordan / Cities and Towns /
Town in west-central Jordan with 80,000 inhabitants (2005 estimate), in the Balqa highlands, at an elevation of about 800 metres.
Honey coloured houses makes Salt unique in Jordan. The city was built by immigrants from Nablus, which in the 19th century was only a short journey away.
Houses in many different styles. Jordan is a country of many cultures and ethnic groups.
Salt is largely an agricultural town and with administrative and service functions. The main agricultral produce are peaches, grapes, olives and grains. It has been suggested a link between 'Salt' and 'sultana', a type of raisins produced from local grapes. Tanning extracts are also produced here, using the sumac bush. Of more modern industries are a pharmaceutical factory.
Salt is well connected to other urban centres, being only 30 km west of Amman and the main highways.
While most of Salt is dominated by standard, modern houses, it is still noted for its many architecturally elegant buildings of the Nablusi style made from honey-coloured local stone. There are also ruins of a 13th-century fortress.
In Byzantine times, known as Saltus, and the seat of a bishopric.
13th century: Destroyed by the Mongols, but quickly rebuilt by the command of the Mamluk sultan, Baybars 1.
1830's: Blown up by Ibrahim Pasha during his campaign in Palestine.
Late 19th century: Becomes the capital of the region, and grows into becoming the only sizeable town on the east bank of the Jordan river. Traders of Nablus establishes themselves in Salt, and build many houses after their native patterns.
1921: The Emirate of Transjordan is declared in Salt, but the capital would still be Amman, which was on the railway linking to Damascus.
1948: With the establishment of the state of Israel, Salt loses its connections with Haifa, which was central to its trade.
1967: Is disconnected from Nablus as a result of the Six-Day War.