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Harar Jugol: The Fortified Historic Town

Mon, Dec 14, 2009


You would get to know your unawareness about the great Ethiopian culture once you reach this place. This place is a great venue to learn African Islamic development. The country Ethiopia itself remained unexplored for many years. The town Harar Jugol recently in 2006 got added to the World Heritage list by UNESCO. It lies nearly 500km to Addis Abaga on a hilltop at an altitude of 1900m. The city has a population of 122000 and is ranked fourth among the holiest city of Islam. There are 82 mosques with three of them as old as that of 10th century and 102 shrines fulfilling the religious needs of people.

The place has been listed in World Heritage list because of its cultural significance but not many people know that this place is also famous for its distinct coffee.

There are many ethnic groups residing here like the amhara, oromo, somali, gurage, tigray etc, which counts Muslims and Christians both.

When it comes to residents of the enclosed city, the original Harari dominate, they name themselves as ‘people of the city’.

The city was established many centuries ago. Though it was both politically and culturally free for many years after several wars of conquests it succumb to stronger opponents. The city along with its surroundings turned into an Ethiopian region in 1995.

This is the place where you can find the amazing amalgamation of Christianity and Islam with the African character.

There is an age old tradition of feeding hyenas with meat which once in a year, which now more of a strategy used to attract tourist.

I can bet you that the place is so pious that you would take away the pure religious feeling back to your home; the place is really different in the sense that the lifestyle and culture of people living there is extremely unique. You would not only enjoy watching altogether different set of clothing and food habits but also learn how two different religions like Islam and Christianity and different ethnic groups co-exist so peacefully.

You would notice huge cultural impact even on the buildings that has been constructed in the region. The atmosphere is extremely serene in such a hot place because of the calmness you would find in you heart in this amazing religious place. You must see all the mosques and shrines and like the inhabitants you would also feel the peace in your heart. Complains that you have with your almighty this place where you would get all the answers. This is a real treasure all humans have; everyone should explore the place. Culturally as well as religiously drench yourself in Harar Jugol.

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