Dire Dawa‘s Most Popular Neighborhood, known as Harar Jugol, is a vibrant and bustling area filled with history, culture, and delicious food, making it a must-see destination for any tourist visiting the city. With its unique mix of traditional and modern architecture, colorful markets, and friendly locals, a visit to Harar Jugol is sure to be a memorable experience.

The History of Harar Jugol

Harar Jugol, also known as the “old city,” has a rich history dating back to the 16th century. It was founded by Arab and Persian merchants, and quickly became an important center for trade and commerce. The old city was also a center of Islamic learning, and it is still home to several historic mosques and shrines.

Exploring the Architecture

One of the most striking features of Harar Jugol is its unique architecture. The old city is home to traditional mud and straw houses, known as “Harari houses,” as well as more modern buildings constructed during the Italian occupation. These houses are characterized by their colorful paint, intricate wooden doors, and flat roofs. Visitors can take a walking tour to see the best examples of Harari architecture and learn about the history of the houses.

Shopping at the Markets

No visit to Harar Jugol would be complete without a trip to one of the colorful markets. The largest market is the “Miskir Market,” where visitors can find everything from fresh produce to traditional textiles. The market is a great place to buy souvenirs, such as handmade baskets and pottery, as well as spices and other traditional ingredients for Ethiopian cuisine.

Trying the Local Cuisine

Speaking of Ethiopian cuisine, a visit to Harar Jugol is a great opportunity to try some delicious traditional dishes. Some popular options include “injera,” a sourdough flatbread that is a staple of Ethiopian cuisine, and “doro wat,” a spicy chicken stew. There are many small restaurants and food stalls in the old city where visitors can try these and other traditional dishes.

Visiting the Mosques and Shrines

Harar Jugol is home to several historic mosques and shrines that are worth a visit. The most famous is the “Grand Mosque,” which was built in the 16th century and is considered one of the oldest in Ethiopia. Other notable mosques include the “Jami Mosque,” which is the main mosque of the city, and the “Makina Mosque,” which is the oldest mosque in the city. There are also several shrines dedicated to local saints, such as the “Sheikh Abadir” shrine.

A Night Out in Harar Jugol

After a day of exploring the old city, visitors can enjoy a night out in one of the many bars and nightclubs in Harar Jugol. The most popular spot is the “Harar Cultural Center,” which is a lively venue that features live music and traditional dancing. There are also several bars that serve traditional Ethiopian drinks, such as “tej,” a honey wine, and “tella,” a traditional beer.


A visit to Dire Dawa’s Most Popular Neighborhood of Harar Jugol is a must for any tourist visiting the city. With its rich history, unique architecture, colorful markets, delicious cuisine, and friendly locals, a day spent exploring the old city is sureto be a highlight of any trip to Dire Dawa. Whether you’re interested in history, culture, or just looking to have a good time, Harar Jugol has something to offer everyone. So be sure to add this vibrant neighborhood to your itinerary when you’re planning your next visit to Dire Dawa, and experience the best of what this charming city has to offer.