Project Description

The medieval walled city of Harar in Eastern Ethiopia, founded in the 7th century A.D. Harar was a major trading crossroad and a center of Islamic learning. Harar was a fiercely religious city dedicated to Islam and the city is considered by many to be the fourth holiest city in the Islamic world. Richard Burtons was the first European to enter to Harar in 1855 when he founded it harder to evade detection there than on his earlier visit to Mecca and the poet Rimbaud also chose Harar as his place of exile from French intolerance.

The whole setting of medieval walls tightly embracing the ancient city, its colorful weekly market is also one of the most tourist attraction in Harar and its towering and majesty mountains, conducive weather condition makes Harar a very alluring place. The town is famous for unique layout of its house, its intricate basketry, coffee, Hyena feeding and for trade of Khat- a stimulant leaf that is chewed. Fortified against invaders its protective wall was built between the 13th and 16th century and the historical wall of Jegol is still intact and pierced by five gates.

The ancient walled city of Harar was a major commercial center for many centuries. The medieval walled city with its 92 mosques, shrines and it is also famous for its old cultural buildings are registered by UNESCO as world heritage site.