HADARAMOUT:Evidence of human greatness [Archives:2005/881/Last Page]

September 29 2005

Completed by:
Yasser Al-Mayasi
Eshraq AL-Bodigi
Yemen Times' Staff

The whole region is known to be one of the main roots of Yemen's civilization rich for its historical heritage, and in particular, the architectural art of which the province acquired its fame. While the latter is magnified by the presence of Shibam City of Hadhramout, there are many signs of archeology e.g. ancient towns, temples, and burial tombs of the prophets Hood and Saleh.

The main cities and archeological sites of Hadhramout are:


Tarim is the holy city of Hadhramout. The great number of dome tombs and the Mihdar mosque give an idea of the significance of Tarim and its many important Islamic figures. This mosque and the highest minaret (50 m) in southern Arabia stand out above Tarim's splendid buildings.

People of Hadhramout call this town “The agriculture splendor” due to the abundant quantity of palm trees that are giving shelters to the number of palaces built throughout Tarim. As soon as the visitor arrives Tarim, the feelings of ancient eras struck his mind i.e. ancient Yemeni civilization. He begins to loose control of his vision while his eyes wonder around those magnificent palaces, the sides of which are “crowned” by the chromes of ripped dates, and itself been designed by the decorations drawn through usage of “Al-Noora”- a white plaster type of wall paint.

This white paint beautified such palaces in such way it made Tarim itself look like a precious jewel at the heart of Wadi Hadhramout.


One of the travelers called this town of mud-built houses of eight or nine stories the “Chicago of the desert”. Like a big ship of the desert it stands right in the middle of a dry river valley. Not only archaeologists believe Shibam to be one of the most beautiful towns in the world. Its foundation goes back to the 3rd century AC.


The biggest town in the province, and its most important on the coastal strip lying at the coast of the Arabian Sea.

Most of its historical spots and monuments still to remain there, as it had not been subjected to any incidence of destruction or distortion. It is also considered one of Yemen's commercial ports, where important trading centers of the fishery industry exist besides; some locally famous markets are there, together with, a number of fish manufacturing industries.

Mukallah's most sites of tourism are the Sultan Palace, Al-Ghuwairi citadel, and some popular markets.


One of the most anciently historical towns of the province, and a commercial center of export for the dates and Arabic gum myrrh. It is situated 60 km away from Al-Mukallah, the capital of the province.

The citizens of Al-Shihr have had traditional expertise in weaving and spinning a particular brand of textiles adapted for making their national costumes. Besides, they earn their living from other skills such as chemical dying of cotton fibers; local clothing industries; and constructions of fishing boats. Long time back, Al-Shihr was one of the famous Arab markets.

Today, it is distinguished by its two sectors, the Old and New Shihr. The former had been made up of muddy blocked houses with particular architectural pattern, and fenced by a circle wall of two entrances named “Al-Khor” entrance gate and Al-Aidaraous exit gate. The town embraces several historical castles and fortresses. While in the new sector, the houses are made of stones.


The biggest in size of all towns, of Hadhramout, with houses surrounded by green line of expanded parks and gardens, together with, date-farm yards and forests. One of its recognized features is the Sultanate Palace known as “the Revolution Palace”. It consists of five floors each divided into several rooms, and accessories.

Sayun has been transferred into a cultural center, archeology museum, and a tradition museum for handicrafts and costumes.

Another monument is the Al-Ghalas Castle, which is one of the industrial complexes for wooden crafts, clay-pots manufacturing and leather industries.

Wadi Doan:

A tropical valley deriving from the Wadi Hadhramout, surrounded by date palms. The two old clay towns, Khoreibah and Al-Hajjarein are the end-points of the Wadi.

Hot and Sulfurous Water Springs:

The coastal part of Hadhramout is distinguished for the existence of several hot and Sulfurous water springs being spread in many areas such as:

– Suwaiber district is about 47 km of a distance from Al-Shihr.

– Al-Dees is about 50 km of a distance from Al-Shihr.

– Al-Hass is about 17 km of a distance from Al-Shihr.

– Shaballah is about 10 km of a distance from Al-Shihr.

However, the natural characteristics of these springs differ each from the other, and are regularly visited by the locals and others in order to be hopefully cured from certain illnesses, such as those affecting the human skin, digestive system, and others related to sugar diabetes, and excess fatness of the body.

Due to the fact of having some of these springs excessively flowing with water, the farmers all around these spring-flowing areas continuously utilize it for irrigation of their farmlands.