SANA'A, Dec. 19 (Saba) - Shaharh is certainly not the only fortified mountain village in Yemen, but it is definitely among the most spectacular. At 2600m above sea level in the middle of a craggy mountain landscape of fissures and gorges, the town’s landscape is heaped in drama.
The only approach to the village is via an impressive, arched stone bridge, which spans one of the mountain gorges.
Its secluded position and its sole point of entry made Shaharh incredibly inaccessible. Water cisterns within the village and nearby terraced fields enabled the village to endure even lengthy sieges. For centuries.
Since the 9th century, the village also held a reputation of being an important place of Islamic learning, and scholars throughout the region in the town were well known.
It was built by a local lord to connect two villages located on either side of the Jabal al Emir and Jabal al Faish. Aptly nicknamed the Bridge of Sighs, the 20m long bridge is suspended 200m above a canyon. Besides the spectacular views of the surroundings, the bridge itself is an engineering masterpiece that took about 3 years to complete.