Sana’a Qadeem

Urbndervish here. Yesterday we took a trip to Sana’a Qadeem (“Old Sana’a”) which was about a ten minute drive from our place. The demarcation line that differentiates Sana’a Qadeem from Sana’a Jadeed (“New Sana’a”) is the ancient, century-old architecture of Sana’a Qadeem and the KFC’s (No product endorsement here) and such of the Sana’a Jadeed!


We visited a good brother (Let’s call him “Mystic Lover”) and his family and they showed us the ancient environs. Don’t let the adjective fool you; Old Sana’a has many modern contrivances as well! It is an interesting contrast to see a 200 year old building with a “Western-style” toilet (which basically means a commode) and an “Eastern-style” toilet (which is basically a porcelain hole in the ground). Initially I thought that Yemen only had the Eastern-style toilets, which would’ve meant for me uncomfortable…um… elimination and massive, muscular quadriceps as a result. Those of you with Eastern-style toilets know what I’m talkin bout!

Mystic Lover’s family were gracious hosts and, typical of Eastern hospitality, fed us till food came out of our ears! We had good discussions about various topics and in between our words, popped Yemeni grapes in our mouths like juicy Tic-Tacs (No product endorsement here). By the way, Mystic Lover taught me that one CAN eat grape seeds. His logic: “Why spend all of that time taking the seeds out of your mouth?” Hypothetical? Indeed!

I really loved the houses there in Sana’a Qadeem! The inside of Mystic Lover’s house was another blend of classic simplicity and modern amenities! The houses there are built to last with almost 16 in. thick, stone walls! It’s like 70’s polyester clothes: antiquated but enduring. Be careful, though! Some of the inside doors were apparently built for hobbits! Eternitysojourner bumped her head twice!

One of the other beautiful sites in Sana’a Qadeem is the Qubbat al-Mahdi (lit. “the Guided One’s Dome”). A qubbat is a mosque built in proximity to a holy personality’s tomb (but not on top). “Al-Mahdi” refers to one of these holy personalities of Yemen’s history. The architecture of the Qubbat is unique in that it has a fortress-like entrance with brick floors on the outside (called the “haram”). The inside of the mosque was carpeted with an elaborate design and the walls were lined with Qur’ans.   

Insha-Allah (God willing), I’m looking forward to returning to Sana’a Qadeem to partake in the ancient cities rich cultural legacy by seeing more places, and to partake in delectable delight of eating more of Mystic Lover’s wife’s killer pasta! :9


Well, we’re getting ready to split.  Look for more pictures of Old Sana’a.  We plan to go many more times, insha-Allah (God willing).


10 thoughts on “Sana’a Qadeem

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  1. Have you ridden a camel yet? 🙂
    We love to read your stories. Please write more.
    We miss you here!
    By the way, do you guys know ‘kurang gula’ (written on the soy milk box) means?

  2. I’m so glad you both made it safely!!! Have a great time…bring us all back something special. (maybe one big thing and we can all get a piece!) I love the breakdown about the difference in eastern and western toilets…that’s how I distinguished that talib as writing this particular post cause Chantal wouldn’t have gone there! lol. Take care! Love you both!

  3. haha i ran into the squat toilets in turkey and bulgaria….not bad for number 1 ;). anyways, great to hear from you, it looks absolutely beautiful there, can’t wait to hear and see more!


  4. As-Salamu Alaykum!!!!

    Alhumdulillah wa Allahu Akbar you guys made it!!! I am sooooo happy for you guys. May Allah bless you in all that you do. Enjoy those Adhans Subhan Allah. I was wating to see when u were gonna write and boom! there u were in the inbox, i was so excited to find out how your first week went Masha Allah. Keep me in ur duaas! Love u guys to pieces!

  5. As-Salaamu Alaykum

    I’m glad all is well with you two. I hope you get a chance to visit Tarim and meet the Habib. Please do not spend too much time on this blog stuff. Get your study on! I’m expecting big things from the both of you. May Allah increase you and give you big openings! Ameen!


  6. As-salaamu ‘alaykum

    Ma shaa Allaah! May Allah ta’ala bless you both and increase you in nearness to His good pleasure. Also, please, please, please don’t forget me in your supplications!

  7. I am so excited that the two of you are choosing to share this experience with me and all of your friends and family. It is lovely to be able to see how you are, and the amazing sights you’ve been witnessing. I hope you will keep us somewhat updated without getting burned out. I’m so impressed and amazed that you are actually in Yemen! It’s incredible! Soak in the experience!

    with love,

  8. so glad to hear you guys are having fun and safe in Yemen!!! Look forward to pictures! Want to hear about your family reunion more. miss you~


  9. afi- i saw my first camel in sana’a after you comment. insha’Allah, i will post a pic for you.

    lakeisha- you know i would’ve spared you the details! 😉

    umm talha- wa alaykum as salaam. alhamdulillah, we are enjoying the adhans. outside of the city, there are plenty palm trees. i’ll try to snag some pics for you! 😉

    imam dawud- you as well, ameen! we’re expecting great things from you too!

    br. muhammad- you as well, ameen!

    julie- jules! so good to hear from you! i hope you got the mail i sent you.

    xihua- ni hao! wo de ponyo! when are you going to call me? i miss you!

  10. salam alikum talib
    this mohmmad from sibawaih
    i hope you’r good and your wife and babies
    i am ok now ,,
    i hope to contact you if possible
    thank you

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