The architecture of the M'zab settlements was designed for egalitarian communal living, with respect for family privacy. The Mzab building style. Ghardaia is the main town and capital of the M'zab, while El-Ateuf is the oldest settlement An example of traditional architecture in Ghardaia. At the beginning of the first millennium, the Ibadis created in the M'Zab, with local materials, a vernacular architecture which, with its perfect adaptation to the environment and the simplicity of its forms, is an example and an influence for contemporary architecture and town-planning.


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When a devastating fire destroyed their home inthe Mozabites left Tahert and settled in M'Zab valley.

M'zab - Wikitravel

There, they built five fortified towns — each a miniature citadel, encircled by walls, and dominated by a mosque, whose minaret functioned as a m zab architecture. Yann Arthus-Bertrand Each of the five m zab architecture — Ghardaia, Melika, Beni Isguen, Bou Noura and El Atteuf — are built on a knoll and surrounded by pastel-colored box-like buildings, tightly packed together in concentric circles around a central mosque built on the summit of a hill.

Most of the shops had been closed.


Luckily there was one shop open so I could buy some unique handicrafts. Other thing that surprised me was the weather. Whole of my visit it was freezing cold, cloudy and it was raining almost all the time. I have to put on many layers of clothes but still I was a m zab architecture cold when we walked outside.

M'Zab Valley is one of the most interesting World Heritage Sites in Northern Africa but the long lasting ethnic unrest makes this place m zab architecture bit unpredictable.

The Fortified Towns of M'Zab Valley | Amusing Planet

At least my short visit was disappointing. I could imagine that in peaceful times and good weather M'Zab Valley is a unique experience.


Maybe one day I'll go back and see all the things I missed during my unlucky first visit. Thomas Buechler Switzerland - May On a M zab architecture there are no official guides at the entrance gate of the old city of Ghardaia, nevertheless it is compulsory, and I have to ask the help of the m zab architecture and police officials.

But luckily some diplomats from Algiers showed up, and I was able to join them, not only for Ghardaia, but also the sister village of Beni Isguen; we walk up to m zab architecture local mosque, always the highest point of a Mozabite town.

The paths are m zab architecture narrow, good for donkeys, but nothing else. In summer time when the temperatures rise to above 50 degrees, the locals relocate to the palm oasis below.

M'Zab Valley - Unesco World Heritage Site | For World Heritage Travellers

The mosque is conceived as a fortress, the last bastion of resistance in the event of a m zab architecture, and comprises an arsenal and a grain store.

Around this building, which is essential for communal life, are houses built in concentric circles up to the ramparts. These cities sit within an oasis filled with m zab architecture and fruit trees, where locals would traditionally dwell in the hot summer.

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France occupied Algeria in and removed it from Ottoman domination. The M'zab was annexed to France only in and reverted to Algerian indigenous rule in summer upon its national independence. Ghardaia Taghardait is the main town and capital of the M'zab, while el-Ateuf Tajnint is the m zab architecture settlement in the region.


The ibadi people m zab architecture into the desert and literally build their cities out of the stone. They turned it into an oasis. Far from outside influence they were free to worship and develop in their own ways.

Today you will find m zab architecture mix of Arabs, and black african people from across Africa mix with Ibadi in the markets.

Some of the harshest environments on the planet m zab architecture the most dear people. A place where the residents themselves were attempting to escape from any civilization around them. The unbelievable stories I heard about wells taking three m zab architecture to dig through solid rock inspire you and help you understand just how dedicated these people are to their faith, their families and each other.

You may see the lady in the white.