An angel of the Lord instructed Philip to take the south-westerly road from Jerusalem to Gaza, a city on the Mediterranean coast formerly belonging to the Philistines.
The road spanned “a distance of some fifty miles” (Jackson, Acts, 95). It was likely paved, and of Roman construction (McGarvey, Acts, 1892, I.151). Somewhere on this road the evangelist encountered the Ethiopian eunuch.
The area through which this road passed is described as “desert” (literally, an uninhabited place). The term
“is not here to be understood in its stricter sense of a barren waste, but in its more general acceptation, of a place thinly inhabited” (McGarvey, Acts, 2005, 96-97).
Sufficient quantities of water were present to immerse the Ethiopian man entirely (Acts 8.36-39).