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Top 5 oldest cities in world

Avid fans of history are in awe when it comes to the oldest cities in the world. The ancient cities have all the more tales engulfed with rich cultural heritage to share. The majority of them are located in the Middle East. This region claims to be the cradle of civilization. In these cities, there are ruins of ancient metropolises where local residents live – descendants of former ethnical groups. Read about the five oldest cities of the Middle East in our photo gallery

Top 5 oldest cities in world

Jericho (Palestine, 9,000 BC)

A small city, Jericho, which is located in the northern Judean desert, is believed to be the oldest city in the world. There are several natural springs in its vicinity. People have settled near them for thousands of years. Situated in the Jordan River Valley, Jericho is the lowest town on Earth (at 258 m below sea level). It narrates the undisputed story of 10,000 years of human life. During the excavations in Jericho, archaeologists unearthed the remains of 8 successive layers of settlement at the site of Jericho, the first of which dates back 11,000 years.

Top 5 oldest cities in world

Byblos (Lebanon, 5,000 BC)

Byblos takes second place among the oldest cities in the world. It is one of the largest ports of the Mediterranean Sea. In the past, it was a fishing village that turned into a busy port thanks to trade with Egypt. Byblos brought wood and wood resin to Egypt. For transportation of goods, the Egyptians built special vessels, which were called Byblos Boats. These days, Byblos (Jubail) is a small town with a population of 3,000 people. This is a paradise for archaeologists and historians. They can find there the remnants of many ancient temples of the Bronze Age, Persian fortifications, and Byzantine churches. The main monuments of Byblos are the temple with obelisks, the royal necropolis, and the ancient amphitheater. The sights of Byblos are under the auspices of UNESCO.

Top 5 oldest cities in world

Aleppo (Syria, 4,300 BC)

The third position in this ranking goes to Aleppo – one of the oldest densely populated cities in the world, previously running along the Great Silk Road. In ancient times, Aleppo was considered one of the centers of trade and military art. Nowadays, the city is remarkable for a variety of ancient architectural monuments – the Citadel of Aleppo, the Great Mosque, and many medieval palaces, hammams, and bazaars. Modern Aleppo is surrounded by dead cities, including 700 abandoned settlements in northwestern Syria, ancient historical monuments, and remnants of Byzantine architecture. The sights of the city are listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Top 5 oldest cities in world

Damascus (Syria, 4,300 BC)

Damascus occupies fourth place on the list. Damascus is one of the oldest cities in the world that has seen many of the great civilizations rise and fall. It is the most ancient of the eastern cities, located at the foot of Mount Kasyun. According to legend, in one of the caves of this mountain, Cain killed his brother Abel. The Cave of Blood looks like a frozen stone toothy mouth. Modern Damascus is surrounded by an oasis, the Ghouta. Fed by the Barbuda River, the urban core of Damascus has made it the greenest city in the Middle East. Its location, abundance of water, and fertile soils boosted its economic prosperity. Nowadays, Damascus is a major cultural and religious center of the Middle East.

Top 5 oldest cities in world

Susa (Iran, 4,200 BC)

Susa (Shush) closes the rankings of the top 5 oldest cities in the world. There is a version that the name of the capital comes from the Elamite word "susan" (or "shushun"), meaning "lily". There are multiple references to Susa in the Old Testament and other ancient books. This ancient city has seen many destructions but it has always been restored. Currently, 65,000 people live in Susa. The main attraction of the city is the Archaeological Mounds. The Grishman fortress, built in the 20th century, is widely popular among tourists. Susa is also home to one of the shrines of the Eastern world – the tomb of Prophet Daniel.

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