The Baptism site was called in the Biblical time as Bethany beyond the Jordan. Located at or around the natural hill at Tell el Kharrar where John the Baptist lived, preached and baptized, the village of Bethany beyond the Jordan was explicitly mentioned in the Bible, John 1:28
Bethany beyond the Jordan where John was Baptized, while John 10:40 mentions an incident when Jesus escaped from hostile Pharisees in Jerusalem and went away again across the Jordan to the place where John at first baptizing.
The region of Bethany beyond the Jordan witnessed many significant associations with ancient prophets and biblical personalities including Moses, Joshua, Elisha. The main mound at tell el-Kharrar has long been calls Elijah’s Hill, or tell Mar Elias in Arabic. It has been identified as the place from which Prophet Elijah ascended to heaven in a whirlwind on a chariot and horses of fire after having parted the water of the River Jordan and walked across it with his successor the Prophet Elisha.
In the Roman period The Bethany area known as Betennaboris.
The 6th century AD Byzantine Madaba mosaic map of the Holy Land labels it as Ainon where now is Saphsaphas.
(The name Saphsaphas comes from the Arabic word for willow tree).
Starting with a small hill where Elijah ascended to heaven in the fiery chariot, this vally cross over the ancient road between Mount Nebo and Jericho and ends by the River Jordan, where churches dedicated to John the Baptist were later built.