Our next and last destination for the day was Ajloun(Ajlun) Castle, located to the west of Jerash. Ajloun Castle, also known as Qa’lat ar-Rabad, is an important destination in the historical journey of Jordan. The castle was built in AD 1184-1185 by Izz al-Din Usama, a commander and nephew of Salah ad-Din al-Ayyubi, to protect the Arab land from the Crusaders.
The Castle originally had four towers around its square boundary, and later in 1214 one more tower was added. Located on top of the hill, the fortress controlled a wide stretch of the northern Jordan Valley’s three main passages that led to it (Wadi Kufranjah, Wadi Rajeb and Wadi al-Yabis), and protected the communication routes between southern Jordan and Syria.
Like most places in Jordan, the earthquakes of 1837 and 1927 harmed the castle the most. Recently, the Department of Antiquities of Jordan has sponsored a program of restoration and consolidation of the walls and has rebuilt the bridge over the fosse The castle is quiet ordinary from the outside but the interior is full of rambling walkways and staircases. There is haunting beauty about the lighted corridors and dark balconies. There used to be a water body around the castle to protect from invaders. The only entrance to the castle is through a bridge.
Inside the castle, there is a main room which could have been the waiting room in the olden days. The room has stone benches were people were sitting to rest after a long day. Beyond this on the left is the remarkable Ajlun Archeological Museum, displaying pottery and ceramics as well as other warfare displays and artefacts from the region and on the right there is staircase leading to the upper levels.