The Republic of Yemen is an Arab country located southwest of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia. Yemen is bordered by Saudi Arabia on the north, Oman on the east, and it has a southern coast on the Arabian Sea and a western coast on the Red Sea. Yemen has more than 200 islands scattered between the Red Sea and the Arabian Sea, the largest among them are Socotra and Hanish.
Yemen is one of the oldest centers of civilization in the ancient world. It is not exactly known when the history of ancient Yemen began, but some inscriptions of the civilization depict that it began a long time ago. For example, Sheba was mentioned in a Sumerian text dating back to about 2500 BCE, that is, since the middle of the 3rd millennium BCE.
The inscriptions in Yemen revealed the history of ancient Yemen dating back to the late 2nd millennium BCE. One of the most important and famous kingdoms in ancient Yemen is the Kingdom of Sheba, Hadramawt, and Himyar, and they are credited with developing one of the oldest alphabets in the world.
It was the Romans who gave Yemen the famous name «Happy Arabia or Happy Yemen». There is archaeological and written evidence in Yemen more than in the rest of the regions of the Arabian Peninsula. Yemen has four World Heritage sites: Socotra, ancient Sana’a, the ancient city of Shibam, and the ancient city of Zabid.
The Most Famous Cities in Yemen
The Ancient City of Shibam
The buildings of the city date back to the 16th century CE. They are one of the oldest examples of meticulous urban organization based on the principle of a high building, as it contains tall tower buildings emerging from the rocks.
Old City of Sana’a
An ancient inhabited city from the 5th century BCE at least, some of the buildings were built before the 11th century CE. It became the temporary capital of the Kingdom of Sheba during the 1st century CE. It is called the «walled city», as it had seven gates, of which only Bab al-Yaman remained. It is one of those ancient cities that existed from the 5th century BCE.
There are 103 mosques and approximately 6000 houses. All of these buildings were built before the 11th century CE. The old city of Sana’a has its own distinguished architecture. As it is known for being richly decorated with different shapes and proportions, such as nub blocks, walls, mosques, brokers, baths, and contemporary markets.
Zabid’s Historic Metropolis
It is a Yemeni city that constitutes a site of exceptional archaeological and historical importance, thanks to its local and military architecture and urban planning. In addition to being the capital of Yemen from the 13th to the 15th centuries, Zabid was of great importance in the Arab and Islamic world for centuries because of its great Islamic university. The city is endangered since 2000.
A Yemeni archipelago consisting of 4 islands in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of the Horn of Africa, 350 km south of the Arabian Peninsula. There is a unique and distinctive vital settlement on the island due to its isolation. The archipelago is considered one of the most important natural reserves in the world, and was included by “UNESCO” in 2008 on the World Heritage List, due to the great biodiversity of this island and its ecological charm and impact on the world.
Socotra, the largest of the archipelago’s islands, harbors many types of rare and endangered animals and trees. It is characterized by its unique trees used in medical industries, the most famous of which is the «Blood of the Two Brothers» tree, the symbol of the island that does not exist anywhere in the world.
Architecture and Building Techniques
The architectural style in most of the Yemeni cities is one of the most prominent manifestations of culture in Yemen. The appearance of the four- and six-story houses in Old Sana’a is not much different from what it was in the old Yemen in the northern highlands such as Old Sana’a, which is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The houses were built with stones and windows were painted white. In other regions, such as Zabid and Hadhramaut, people used bricks and milk in building their houses. UNESCO included the mud towers in Shibam and Hadramout, on the list of World Heritage Sites.
Most Important Touristic Cities in Yemen
There are many beautiful touristic cities in Yemen, which include a group of attractions for tourists, in addition to various tourist activities. Here are the 7 most important touristic cities to visit in Yemen
The city of Sana’a is the capital of Yemen, it is considered one of the most important and prominent cities attracting tourism in Yemen. It is situated at 2,200 meters above sea level. Sana’a is considered one of the oldest cities in the Arab world. Their history dates back to more than a thousand years. Sana’a also includes more than 50 mosques, and several markets, orchards, museums, and popular baths that can be visited in Sana’a. Here we present some places that can be visited in Sana’a.
It is called the walled city, it had seven gates, of which only Bab al-Yaman remained. It is one of those ancient cities that existed from the 5th century BCE. There are 103 mosques and approximately 6000 0 houses. All of these buildings were built before the 11th century CE. The old city of Sana’a is distinguished by its architecture, as it is richly decorated with different shapes and proportions, such as nub blocks, walls, mosques, brokers, baths and contemporary markets.
Al Bakiriyya Mosque
The Al Bakiriyya Mosque is considered one of the most beautiful mosques in the capital, Sana’a. It is located in Qasr al-Silah Square. The dome of the Al Bakiriyya Mosque consists of two main sections, one of which is on display and called the sanctuary or courtyard, and the other is covered and known as the House of Prayer.
The Great Mosque was built during the era of Prophet Muhammad. It is one of the oldest Islamic mosques. This mosque is very similar to the mosque established by the Umayyad Caliph Al-Waleed bin Abdul Malik, as it is rectangular in shape with a very large area. It has 12 doors and its outer walls were built of Turkey stone, the black balconies were built of bricks and plaster.
Dar Al-Hajar Palace
Dar Al-Hajar Palace consists of seven floors, in harmony with its design with the natural composition of the rock, and at its gate, there is a perennial taluka tree that is estimated to be 700 years old. Black turkey stone. It is considered one of the most important touristic attractions in Yemen.
The Military Museum
The Military Museum in Sana’a displays the Yemeni military heritage, as it includes more than 5,000 artifacts, some of which are from the ancient Sana’a military tools. The exhibits are arranged according to the historical and chronological sequence of successive historical facts and events starting from the stone ages and prehistoric times to the present day.
The location of the city of Aden is a distinctive and attractive location, as it oversees the coasts that bring a wonderful atmosphere in the city. The city is located above the crater of a volcano that has been dormant for millions of years. In the city of Aden, you find a famous port. This port was naturally formed, without human intervention in its formation.
Here are some of the attractions of the city of Aden
Aden cisterns are one of the most prominent historical and touristic attractions in the city, which attract tourists very much. These cisterns are located at the bottom of the Aden plateau, which is about 800 feet above sea level. These cisterns are considered one of the most visited attractions in Yemen.
Sira Castle is one of the fascinating castles and fortresses of the ancient city of Aden. The castle played a defensive role in the life of the city throughout the ages. The castle was named Sira, in reference to the island of Sira where the castle is located.
The Lighthouse of Aden is one of the prominent archaeological monuments in the city of Aden. Some historians say that it is a minaret of one of the ancient historical mosques, which disappeared with the passage of time, and only this part of the mosque remained.
The city of Taiz is called the dreamy city, and the cultural capital of Yemen, as it is famous for its civilization prosperity throughout the historical ages. The city of Taiz is located near the port city of Mocha on the Red Sea, it is the 3rd largest city in Yemen. Taiz is one of the important cities in Yemen that includes many wonderful attractions, ranging from charming landscapes, recreational parks, archaeological sites, and beautiful beaches.
Taiz provides its visitors with the enjoyment of many wonderful recreational activities, such as roaming in the wonderful amusement parks and botanical gardens in the zoo, Sheikh Zayed Park, and the Al-Gareeb trees. Visiting mountains such as Sabr Mountain, enjoying the therapeutic spa of Sabr Mountain, going to impressive valleys, such as Wadi Al-Dhabab and Wadi Jarzan, and meditating in the scenic landscapes.
You can also enjoy the beaches of the city of Taiz, and practice multiple water sports, and interesting beach games. This is in addition to exploring ancient and historical monuments such as the Great Gate, the city wall, and the Cairo Citadel. Here, we present some of the attractions of Taiz.
The mosque is located on the eastern side of Taiz. The Jund Market located near the mosque was one of the most important seasonal Arab markets, it was even famous before Islam. The Al-Jund Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Islam.
The National Museum
The National Museum is a palace of Imam Ahmad Hamid al-Din, where the palace was the seat of his rule, and today it has turned into a museum that contains heritage exhibits and the collections of Imam Ahmad Hamid al-Din and his family, in addition to old weapons and memorial photos.
The Castle of Al-Qahira or Cairo is located on the northern slope of Mount Saber, where it rests on a rocky hill.
Al-Damla Castle is considered one of the most prominent archaeological monuments. Throughout history, this castle was an impenetrable fortress that was difficult for invaders to break into, which made it one of the famous castles in Yemen.
The city of Seiyun is famous for its Al Kathiri Palace. The roots of Seiyun go back to the beginning of the 4th century CE, when the Sabaeans destroyed it at the time along with other civilizations in Hadhramaut. Seiyun enjoyed a distinguished position during that period. The beautiful desert of Seiyun is one of the attractions for travelers. With time, Seiyun turned into the largest area of Hadramawt.
Seiyun consists of a flat plain surface as part of Wadi Hadramout surrounded by mountain ranges from the north and the south. There are valleys that penetrate this chain, the most important of which are Wadi Shahuh and Jathmah. Seiyun has a tropical climate, with high temperatures in summer and mild in winter, and rain scarce in winter.
Seiyun in the 13th century CE was a small village, and in the 16th century CE, it developed after its adoption as the capital of the Kathiri Sultanate. With time and the expansion of urbanization, its successive rulers built large mosques, the most prominent among them is the Jami Mosque, which is the oldest Seiyun Mosque, Taha Mosque, Al-Qarn Mosque, and Basalim Mosque.
Sultan Al Kathiri Palace
Al Kathiri Palace is located in the center of the city of Seiyun. It is one of the prominent landmarks of Seiyun and Hadhramaut. It is considered one of the finest clay architectural masterpieces. This palace was built on a hill that rises about 35 meters above ground level, which made it overlook the city’s market and its commercial activity center.
The city of Mukalla is the bride of Hadhramaut, a city full of life, as well as a distinctive blend between historical authenticity and attractive modern buildings, which made it one of the most beautiful Yemeni cities.
You can relax on the charming beaches with soft sand, swim, sunbathe, walk along the coast, and watch the fishing boats dotted on the shores of the city and laden with fish.
You can also visit important archaeological and historical sites such as the Royal Palace with its amazing architectural style, Al-Ghwezi fort, castles and rocks, and the city’s magnificent port.
The Dhamar Governorate is located in the southwestern section of Yemen, in a valley 12 miles wide between two volcanic peaks, 8100 feet above ocean level. It is one of the most important touristic sites in Yemen.
You can enjoy many interesting recreational activities, such as exploring important archaeological sites at the high altitudes, climbing mountains and heights, and getting the best panoramic views of the city from above.
In addition to the experience of therapeutic baths in natural, mineral, and sulfur springs, in order to refresh your blood circulation and heal from many diseases.
The village of Zabid is the first Islamic city in Yemen, and it is one of the important touristic attractions in the country. Zabid was registered by UNESCO in 1993 as a World Heritage Site.
The village of Zabid includes a distinctive group of touristic attractions, such as the Al-Ash’ar Mosque, which is distinguished by its unique architectural structure, as well as many mosques and religious schools. This is in addition to a collection of excellent and unique fruits for which the village is famous.
Island and Beach
Island and beach tourism in Yemen are considered one of the most important elements of tourist attractions. Yemen has a large number of islands, numbering more than 183 islands, which are islands with unique, picturesque, charming, and attractive natural characteristics for marine tourism, diving, and recreation tourism.
Yemen has a coastal strip that extends to more than 2500 kilometers along the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean. Here are some of the attractive islands and beaches.
The most famous group of islands in Yemen is an archipelago consisting of 4 islands in the Indian Ocean off the coast of the Horn of Africa near the Gulf of Aden. Socotra is the largest among the Arab and Yemeni islands. The island’s capital is Hadibo.
The island is located in an exceptional location in terms of the great diversity of its floral life and the proportion of endemic species, as 73% of plant species (out of 528 species), 09% of reptile species, and 59% of wild snail species found in the archipelago are not found in any other place.
As for the birds, the site harbors important species at the global level (291 species), including some endangered species. The marine life on Socotra is characterized by its great diversity, with the presence of 352 species of Reef-building corals, 730 species of coastal fish, and 300 species of crabs, lobsters, and shrimps.
The island was classified as a World Heritage Site in 2008. It was called “the most exotic area in the world”, and the New York Times ranked it as the most beautiful island in the world for the year 2010.
Al Ghadeer Beach
It is located in the Al Ghadeer area in the Aden Governorate, and it is one of the most beautiful beaches. It opens from 7 am till 8 pm on daily basis, it is a beach at the top of splendor and beauty, characterized by a moderate natural climate and a beautiful location. It has a lot of tourist services, chalets and rest houses.
The Golden Coast
It is located in Al-Tawahi District in Aden Governorate. The Golden Coast or Goldmore is one of the beaches that is most visited by Yemeni people. Children can have fun while they are swimming, and you will see groups of women gathered together, chatting and drinking tea.
It is located in the Khor Maksar region in the governorate of Aden. It is characterized by the beauty of its scenery, soft sand and clear water, and several rest stations. It is the longest beaches and coasts of Aden Governorate. The coast of Abyan is one of the most important beaches that adorn the temporary capital of Aden, of its wide area and the corniche on which it is built. The most important feature of the Abyan coast is its clear waters and fine sand.
It is located to the south of the city of Al-Hodeidah on the eastern side of the Red Sea coast. It is a very beautiful beach covered with soft white sand with crescent shapes surrounded by white sand dunes. It is one of the most beautiful Yemeni beaches, shaded by palm trees that are spread all over the beach. There are wonderful summer resorts, characterized by their fresh air and the clarity of their waters. The beaches of Al-Khokha are among the most visited beaches in Yemen.
It is located in the city of Al-Luhayyah, north of Al-Hodeidah Governorate, on the eastern bank of the Red Sea coast. The island is most known for its large creek of forests, mangroves and seagrass in large quantities, along with many migratory and endemic birds. In addition to the coral reefs in large quantities and at close depths. The most important characteristic of this beach is the nearby forests, dense trees, and seaweeds, as well as the abundant numbers of migratory birds.
It is located to the south of the city of Al-Hodeidah. It is characterized by soft sand dunes shaded by palm trees, more than one million palm trees that are a few kilometers tall.
South Beach Mandhar Village
It is located in the southwest of Hodeidah, it is famous for its surreal nature, lovely white sand, moderate atmosphere, and quietness.
It is located in the Al-Dis district in the Hadhramaut Governorate. it is considered one of the most beautiful and purest beaches in the Hadhramaut governorate.
Famous Archaeological Sites
The history of Yemen is very ancient, it is a country full of monuments, castles, forts, palaces, temples, and dams. It is the first home of the ancient Arabs. Many civilizations were present in this old land, such as the Sabaean and Himyarite kingdoms, which testify that the land of Yemen was the forerunner in many architectural, cognitive, and military arts, as the civilized vocabulary of Yemeni civilizations can be seen.
In the various Yemeni museums and in historical and archaeological sites in the eastern regions in particular and throughout the country in general, and at the beginning of the first millennium BCE, Yemeni civilizations were at the height of their prosperity and contributed a large share of knowledge and human development. All that rare mixture of rich heritage and fragrant history made Yemen an important destination that many tourists and visitors wish to visit. In addition to being one of the important archaeological touristic areas in the world.
Here are some of the attractive archaeological sites.
It is an ancient town and the center of Shibam District in Hadhramaut Governorate in eastern Yemen. The walled city of the 16th century is one of the oldest and best examples of meticulous urban planning based on the principle of vertical construction. It is called “Manhattan of the Desert” due to its tall towering buildings emanating from the rocks. In 1982, UNESCO added the city of Shibam to the list of World Heritage sites.
Queen of Sheba Throne
It is the Temple of Bran, the most famous archaeological site among the antiquities of Yemen. It is located 1400 meters to the northwest of Muharram Bilqis. It is followed by the Awam temple in terms of importance and it is known locally as “The Baptists”.
The archaeological excavation revealed its buried details under the sand, as it was found that the temple consists of different architectural units, the most important of which are the Holy of Holies and the front yard and their accessories, such as the large wall built of bricks and affiliated facilities.
The architectural elements of the Temple of Bran in different periods of time since the beginning of the 1st millennium BCE, and it seems that the temple consists of a harmonious architectural unit in which the main entrance and the courtyard meet with the high amphitheater in a way that suggests splendor, beauty, and grandeur of the achievement. It should be noted that the throne witnessed a wide restoration process and thus the temple became ready to receive tourists.
Al Kathiri Palace
it was originally built as a fortress for the popups of protecting and defending the city. However, after many modifications and restorations, it became the official residence of Sultan Al Kathiri. The palace dates back to the late 16th century CE, it includes 90 rooms. Part of it is now used as an archaeological museum for the history of Hadhramaut as well as a public library.
The palace is situated on a hill in the center of the public market in Seiyun. It is considered one of the most prominent historical monuments in the valley, as it is characterized by its beauty, consistency, and huge size. The palace was built of mud, where mud architecture flourishes in Hadhramaut Valley to this day, due to its suitability to the valley’s climate, which is characterized by heat and drought.
The image of the palace is shown on the front of the 1000 riyals currency, as it is one of the most important historical monuments in Yemen, and it is considered the most important architectural masterpiece in the south of the Arabian Peninsula and a source of pride for the historical Arab architecture.
Dar Al-Hajar Palace
Dar Al-Hajar Palace consists of 7 floors, in harmony with its design with the natural composition of the rock, and at its gate there is a perennial taluka tree that is estimated to be 700 years old. Black turkey stone. It is considered one of the most important tourist attractions in Yemen.
One of the most ancient water dams located in Yemen, as the archeological excavations showed that the Sabaeans tried to limit water and take advantage of rain since the 4th millennium BCE. However, the famous dam itself dates back to the 8th century BCE. Marib Dam is one of the most important historical ancient Yemeni dams.
The dam was built of stones cut from the rocks of the mountains, where they were carefully carved. Gypsum was used to connect the carved stones to each other, in order to be able to stand firm against the danger of earthquakes and violent torrential rains. According to archaeological excavations, the dam suffered at least four collapses. The dam was restored and renovated in modern times.
Religious tourism in Yemen is represented in the features of the Islamic civilization, such as mosques and shrines, including the Great Mosque in Sana’a, the Al-Jund Mosque, the Mosque of the People of the Cave in Taiz, the mosque and mausoleum of Sheikh Ahmed bin Alwan in Taiz, and the Al-Aidaros Mosque.
Historical Mosques in Dhamar
In the Atma area, many historical mosques are spread in the district, including, for example, The Bag Mosque and the Mosque of the Choir. Most of the mosques in the Atma district are considered old mosques, whose construction dates back to ancient historical periods.
Mausoleums in Dhamar
There are many shrines and domes for the righteous people, for example, Al-Humaydah, Al-Sharam Al-Safel, and Hijra Al-Mahroom, which are made of wooden coffins decorated with ornaments consisting of floral and epigraphic bands and geometric shapes, all executed on wood by the method of a deep engraving. A number of tombs are still standing and in good condition.
Al-Jarmuzy Mausoleum and Mosque
It is considered one of the important shrines in the district in the migration of Mikhlaf. It is one of the most famous historical mosques in Yemen.
Yahya bin Hamza Mosque
It is situated in the district of Al-Zahir, its construction dates back hundreds of years and contains manuscripts and decorations decorated with bright and unique inscriptions, in addition to the Great Mosque in the heart of the old city of Al-Hazm. The mosque was built of mud and it can host about five hundred worshipers. It has a newly built minaret and a wooden roof adorned with wooden panels on which inscriptions and Quranic verses are fixed.
This mosque had a great role in calling and spreading the teachings of the Islamic religion in the region. It was founded by Ahmed bin Suleiman.
The mosque is located in the middle of the archaeological area of Baraqish. It was built by Imam Abdullah bin Hamza. It was from this mosque the call for peace spread to the various regions of the province. His wife also dug a well in this place and she named it after her, Nubia, and the well still carries her name until now. She also built a mosque next to the well.
Yemen is famous for its desert, the Empty Quarter is one of the vastest, most famous, and most mysterious deserts in the world. The ancient Yemeni trade of incense and frankincense route associated with the ancient Yemeni civilization, they are one of the attractions of desert tourism, which makes the adventure on these roads very interesting and interesting.
Yemen possesses many natural components that, in total, constitute the main and secondary factors for the establishment of medical tourism, which depends mainly on the sources of therapeutic mineral water baths, especially in Al-Huwaimi in Lahij, Tabla in Hadramout, Hammam Al-Sukhna (southeast of Hodeidah), Hammam Damt in Al-Dhalea, Eastern Diss in Hadramaut, Hammam Ali in Dhamar and other areas.
In Hadhramaut, there are many natural hot therapeutic water sites whose temperature ranges between 40 and 65 degrees Celsius. The well-known among these sites are Ma’yan Awad, Mayan Al Rami, and Ma’yan al-Dunya in Tbala. All of these natural healing sites are visited by people daily throughout the year to recover from diseases.
The baths of the old district of Sana’a include Sultan’s bath, Qazali bath, Spa bath, Aortic bath, Toshi bath, and many others.
They are all spread in the old Sanaa lanes, they were supplied with water from wells, where one or more water wells were attached to each lane. It is believed that the Bath of Sheba is ancient, as well as the Yasser Bath, which may be attributed to the Himyarite King. As for the rest of the baths, they date back to different times of the Islamic era.
It is believed that its history dates back to the 16th century CE, which is the date of the construction of the neighborhood by the Ottomans, during the first period of their rule in Yemen.
Its history goes back to the beginning of the 18th century CE, when Imam Al-Mutawakkil established a number of service facilities in the Al-Qaa neighborhood, including these baths.
One of the oldest public baths represents the inherited and famous historical model. This bath bears the name of its builder until today.
One of the well-known ancient baths. It follows the Ottomans construction style.
It is one of the famous baths in Sana’a, and its location is “Bab al-Sabbah”. It is still standing in its original state today.
Activities Never to Miss in Yemen
A large number of Yemeni islands with beautiful and attractive natural characteristics provide a great chance for marine tourism, diving, and recreation activities. In addition to the multiple mountainous heights that are characterized by the beauty of the picturesque nature and its permanent green terraces, especially during summer of each year. There are peaks, slopes, and caves, even the mountains can be used for meditation and speculation, climbing, and hiking activities.
It is one of the favorite ancient sports of the Arabs, and in Yemen, the traditional horse race is held, as one of the activities of the Qarnaw Festival.
There is also the traditional horse race in the desert of Al-Jawf Governorate, in which the top three in the race are honored. In addition to the endurance race for horses for a distance of 80 km.
Camel racing is also an exciting watch and exciting sport. It has occupied a prestigious position in the hearts of Arabs for hundreds of years. It is a sport of originality, heritage, honorable competition, excitement, and speed.
The Red Sea is one of the most famous waterways on its banks. It is considered one of the best diving areas in the world due to the diversity and scarcity of the picturesque coral reefs, especially in the far south of the Red Sea.
There are many islands scattered along the coast of Yemen where marine life is diverse. It is considered one of the most attractive places for visitors from all over the world, where the splendor of diving and water skiing is clear.
Excursions and Hiking
The mountains of Yemen are the best places to go hiking due to the scenic views, especially in the mountains northwest of Sana’a where distances between villages are short, in addition to the authentic Arab hospitality of locals in those regions. the heights of Yemen are certainly among the largest undiscovered hiking areas in the world.
Culture in Yemen
Yemen’s culture is abundant and rich in various folk arts, such as dances, songs, dress, and women’s Janabiya ornaments. Its origins go back to very ancient times as they have a role in defining the features of the Yemeni identity and nationalism.
There are several folk dances in Yemen, the most famous among them is the Al-Bara dance. The word “bara” is derived from the word “wit” or “ingenuity” in controlling the dagger. The styles of the dance differ according to each region and tribe. All of the dances are distinguished from the other by the accompanying music and the speed of movement and their differences, except that all of them are ancient war and fighting dances.
The most important meaning of this skill is to teach the people of the tribe to work as an interconnected group in difficult circumstances. The dance often consists of three to four paragraphs, and the number of participants may reach 50. They perform miniature movements. The speed of the rhythm and the difficulty of the movements increase with the progress in the paragraphs. The worst performing dancers come out of the dance.
Among the famous folk dances are Sharh and Shabwani, and Zamil for Hadramis is another dance. The Jews in Yemen have a famous dance called the Yemeni Step in which both sexes participate and no weapons are used in it, it is similar to other dances in Yemen and is often performed at weddings.
Yemenis wear a dress they call the Zanna, they place the Janabi in the middle and wrap turbans on their heads. In recent years, they added the overcoat to their everyday wear. They also wear the Ma’oz, which is a loincloth that is wrapped over the lower part of the body, in the coastal and southern regions.
The people of the desert studded their daggers with Yemeni onyx, while the people of Sana’a were content with metal, so they planted their daggers in silver, gold, or bronze with handles of cow horns.
The use of jewelry is ancient in Yemen, only minor differences occur in the shape and placement of clothing from one region to another. Yemenis have been known since ancient times for wearing gold and silver. Jewelry is manually made and decorated with cloves and various precious stones such as coral, agate, sapphire, pearl, amber, and emerald that are extracted from Yemeni mines.
Yemeni cuisine contains many unique dishes. The most famous dishes are Mandi, Madhbi, Shafut, Salta, Jalameh, Fahsa, Uqdah, Harees, Al Aseed, Madfoun, Wazf, Sahawq, Jahnun, Masoub, Mutabbaq, and Bint Al-Sahn. As for bread, there is Malouja, Moulouh, and Khameer. And drinks such as Aladani tea and Alhaqin.
Hadhramaut honey, known for its rich, strong flavor, it is famous throughout the Arab region and is considered one of the best and most expensive species in the world. Besides its delicious taste, it has medicinal uses. Beekeeping is probably one of the oldest forms of obtaining food in the area. Many beekeepers are nomadic, moving between areas where there are flowers. The highest quality honey comes from bees that feed on natural plants in the desert areas that only grow in Wadi Hadhramaut, namely Sidr trees and cans.
Mandi is made of rice, meat (lamb or chicken), and a mixture of spices. The meat used is usually young to give a delicious flavor. The main thing that distinguishes mandi from the rest of the other meat dishes is that the meat is cooked in the tandoor (the Hadrami taboon), which is a special type of oven. The meat is then suspended inside a tandoor without touching the coals. After that, the tandoor closes and the smoke inside is vented. After the meat is cooked, it is placed over the rice decorated with raisins, pine nuts, walnuts, and almonds.
Yemen is considered one of the first countries that cultivated coffee and exported it to the world, with evidence that coffee is called Arabica or Arabic coffee originating from Yemen; The most important and luxurious type of coffee is the mocha, which is a distortion of the “Mocha coffee” in relation to the famous Yemeni port (Mocha). The port of Mocha is considered the first from which merchant ships set out and exported coffee to Europe and the rest of the world in the 17th century. Yemeni coffee is famous for its special taste and unique taste that differs from other types of coffee that are grown and produced in other countries of the world.
Saltah is a dish with a variety of ingredients. It is considered one of the main dishes in the northern parts of Yemen, especially in the highlands. The main component of the Saltah is the fenugreek. Diversified vegetables are added to it along with the meat broth and cooked in a stone pot at a very high temperature. The crumbled meat can be added to the Saltah and in this case, it is called Fahsah.
Best Time to Travel to Yemen
The climate in Yemen is subtropical, dry, and hot desert. It is characterized by low rainfall, and high temperatures, especially during summer. This is where the daily temperature during the summer reaches 40 degrees Celsius. The ideal time for tourism in Yemen is during the spring, fall, and winter seasons. It is worth noting that:
Winter in Yemen
One of the distinguished tourist seasons. With the beginning of January, the long dry season begins, which is a great time for great water activities such as snorkeling, diving, and exploring the exciting marine life. As well as exploring the country’s prominent landmarks, and wandering among the green spaces resulting from the monsoon rains.
Spring in Yemen
Also, a great time to travel in Yemen, as it is the middle of the long dry season. The climate is drier, and the calm waters are ideal for snorkeling and diving on the wonderful Yemeni coasts. You can also take boat trips, contemplate the surrounding landscape, relax in the theme parks, and wander in the fresh air.
Summer in Yemen
The summer is very hot in Yemen, in addition to its dust and sand storms. However, it is also a good time to visit Yemen, where you can enjoy paragliding, go to the tourist beaches, watch turtles and take beautiful pictures with them.
Autumn in Yemen
Autumn is the best time ever for travel and tourism in Yemen. This is where you can walk long distances, and practice mountain activities, where the valleys are filled with clean fresh water, and lush landscapes, which gives you a great chance to enjoy the bright colors of the country.
Language in Yemen
Arabic is the official language used in Yemen. There are also many other non-Arabic languages prevalent in Yemen, perhaps the most famous of which is the Al-Razihi language.
The Ideal Period for Tourism in Yemen
The ideal duration of tourism in Yemen is about a week or so. This time is enough to explore most of the country’s important landmarks. The following is a suggested tourist program in Yemen that can help you plan your program:
Start your trip by heading to Old Sana’a, and enjoy discovering its attractions and landmarks, then relax in your hotel.
Visit Wadi Dhar, Thalaa village, Hababa city, Shibam village, Kawkaban village and Tawila city. then, you can head to the city of Al Mahwit to spend your night, as it is an ideal area to see many tourist attractions in Yemen, and important historical sites.
Days 3 and 4
Visit the magnificent Haraz Mountains in the city of Al Mahwit, to enjoy the best scenic landscapes, and satiate your senses by contemplating the green mountains in Al Mahwit, and the mixed views of the valley, as well as the desert landscapes in the city of Al Hudaydah.
Head to the weekly Friday market at Beit Al-Faqih, where thousands of people come to buy and trade everything from goats to clothes and biscuits. End your day by going to the mountains and enjoying exciting desert sports.
Days 6 and 7
Visit Al-Hatib Village, a beautiful and clean village located in the mountain, famous for its coffee cultivation. Then head to Sana’a to visit the Saleh Mosque, and shop for souvenirs.
Communications and Internet in Yemen
Communication companies in Yemen are constantly working on the development of this sector, in order to provide a great spread, as they have provided and improved internet offers throughout the country. The internet speed in Yemen is acceptable, and prices are low. Internet is also available at airports, stations, and restaurants.
Transportation in Yemen
To move within Yemen, there are many options for public transportation, and here are the important ones:
Shared taxis are one of the common means inside Yemen, you can use them to facilitate movement between cities.
Renting a car in Yemen is the safest and most popular way to get around the country and explore all it has to offer.
There are many buses and minibusses in Yemen that connect cities to each other. Buses are comfortable and affordable.
The Official Currency in Yemen
The Yemeni riyal (YR) is the official currency of Yemen. The Yemeni riyal is divided into 100 sub-currencies called fils.