The Forts of Liwa

My recent clear out meant finding a gem of lost information in my library of thousands of books, tapes, articles etc. One such bit included information on Liwa’s historic buildings which has of recent attracted a lot of interest amongst architecture specialists. Now I’m a great fan of the Architecture Heritage society and in particular of Rashad Bukhash & Peter Jackson and their work with traditional buildings in the UAE.

However it pains me that I often end up missing out on the society’s talks and excursions due to work and personal commitments. This does not stop me from doing my own research about intriguing buildings in between my zumba and yoga classes.

I learnt that most of these forts were built in the early 19th centrury by the Bani Yas tribes prompting communities to grow around the forts. Some of the structures to visit in Liwa include the Al Khnour Fort, The Muqib Tower, Hyeela Tower, Dhafeer Fort, Muzeira’a Fort, Arrada Fort, Jabbana Fort. I’ve also heard of Umm Hosn and Al Meel but have not read much about them. If anyone has any information about them it would be delightful.

Forts in this part of the world have cylindrical towers and built with a local mixture of clay, gypsum and sand, locally known as sarouj. Most have towers, wall openings and are usually built near water. Images of Liwa will be with you soon as soon as I secure my next luxury car for a weekend outstation. Do I hear Jebel Hafeet whispering my name seductively???

Next up – The Forts, oasis and towers in Al Ain. Watch this space!

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