Harar – the Ethiopian city known as ‘Africa’s Mecca’ marks its 1,010th anniversary

In 2006, Harar was listed as a Unesco World Heritage Site to highlight its unique and exceptional architecture, which captures the African and Islamic culture of its habitants.

Harar – a long history:

7th Century: Part of Coptic Christian Kingdom of Axum, area adopted Islam

1007: Harar city founded

16th Century: Capital of Harari Kingdom, major centre of regional trade and Islamic learning

Said by some to be Islam’s fourth holiest site, after Mecca, Jerusalem and Medina

2006: Named Unesco World Heritage site

Unesco hails the city as a “rare example of a relatively well-preserved historic town that has retained its traditions, urban fabric, and rich Harari Muslim cultural heritage to the present time”.

This is why, as the city marks yet another milestone in its proud and long history, locals believe that it still has much to offer the rest of Africa as a beacon of culture and conservation.

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