Abu Dhabi’s second city Al Ain has become the first site in the United Arab Emirates to make it to Unesco’s World Heritage List.
Unesco has cited Al Ain’s distinguished cultural sites and the geological, archaeological and historic importance of sites throughout the city. These include: Jebel Hafit, the 1,249 metre high peak – the highest in the emirate - which backdrops the city and which boasts 500 ancient burial tombs dating back 5,000 years in its foothills; the bronze and iron age sites of Al Hili; the tombs of the Bida Bin Saud area as well as Al Ain’s ancient oases with their preserved traditional Al Falaj system which irrigated palm groves and farms.
“This long-sought accreditation will do much to lift the tourism potential of Al Ain and ADTA will move to leverage the listing as wide as possible,” said Sheikh Sultan Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman, Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (Adta). “ We also look to our expanding stakeholder base to leverage its own entrepreneurial instincts and skills to ensure that the anticipated increasing visitor demand for Al Ain is met in the most professional and respectful way possible.”
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