"Manhattan of the desert" Say'un by K1W1

Say'un Travel Guide: 29 reviews and 71 photos

Sayun and Shibam

Sayun is a small town, way out in the desert to the east of Yemen. It has a couple of worthwhile sites of its own, namely the huge central palace the old town, constructed of only mud bricks and the 'old town', also created just out of mud bricks. Sayun is also the base many travellers use to visit the amazing Shibam.
Dubbed as the Manhattan of the desert, Shibam is widely believed to be the first city of skyscrapers in the world. The city was built with clay and the amazingly the 6 storey buildings are still standing and inhabited. It is a great testament to the original architects that the city is still standing, but it is now taking millions of Euros to maintain this UNESCO site. Getting lost among the narrow alleys in the shadows of the buildings while dodging the goats and children running around is a real highlight -Iýve not seen another city that compares. For the best overall view, take some time to climb the mountain, or at least some of the way, to see the city at sunset

  • Last visit to Say'un: May 2004
  • Intro Updated Feb 22, 2005
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K1W1

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