The new digital and social media to discover Arabia and the Middle East. Offbeat. Innovative.

6 of the most creative cities are from the Arab world

Sharjah / Credits: Sarathmaroli

Sharjah / Credits: Sarathmaroli

In 2004, UNESCO created the Creative Cities Network to encourage interaction with and between cities that have demonstrated creativity in their sustainable urban development. The new list, published this autumn, marks the entry of 6 new cities in the Arab world...

“All over the world, these cities, each in its own way, make culture the pillar, not the accessory, of their strategy. This was stated by Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, about the latest entries in the list, bringing the total to 246 cities.

Each one relies on its own strengths

Selected on very specific criteria, they all have at least one strength that has enabled them to join the network. For Beirut, the Lebanese capital, and for Slemani, in Iraq, it is literature. For Essaouira, in Morocco, it is the musical aspect that allows him to make his mark just like Ramallah in Palestine, while Muharraq, in Bahrain, relies on design. Finally, the Emirates’ cultural hub, Sharjah, stands out for the quality of its creativity in the field of crafts.

These cities join illustrious cousins such as Zahlé, in Lebanon, privileged for its gastronomy, Baghdad, for its literature, or Dubai, for its exploits in the field of design.