This is a view of the centre and Old town of Sayun, the major city in the Wadi Hadhramawt area of southeastern Yemen.
Sayun is about 19 km from the more famous town of Shibam, the "Manhattan of the desert", and the most convenient place to stay during a visit to the area. It is close to the regional airport, has a terminal for long distance buses and there are a few hotels and restaurants.
I took this photo through a window of the Sultan's Palace, which today houses a small museum. You can see the palace in a workshop, It's a bad photo, but never mind.
Both pictures from 1998 were scanned from Kodachrome slides.
rigoletto, ourania, mehrdad-t, worldcitizen, PaulVDV, saxo042, pajaran, mirosu, Wanda1, SnapRJW, gildasjan, Romano46, InasiaJones, trevormoffiet, mcmtanyel, imageme, kato, jhm, Kielia, macjake, Angshu, josepmarin, aleXundar, annjackman, COSTANTINO, adores, Didi, Tigerlily has marked this note useful
Critiques | Translate
rigoletto (34231) 2014-01-20 7:34
hello gert. now, this is what should be called a "descriptive POV", or a "captivating POV", you choose which. in a single photo, you deliver all the feeling of being there. i haven't seen any photos from sayun before, but if one needed to see what is it like inside, then he should come and see this one. deserves to be printed in a tourist guide about yemen (or maybe it has been already)
yquem46 (38382) 2014-01-20 7:36
A good quality shot, hard to date it as 15 years old !
Excellent luminosity and colors that blend well together
In my unconscious mind Yemen is so much in the Middle Ages that I'm always surprised to see it crowded with cars and trucks, lol !
best regards, have a nice day
SNOOP_Chan (3841) 2014-01-20 7:37
Hello Gert, a very interesting image here. I love the colors on the shot. Good contrast against the blue sky. Good angle also, it really apperas like in the title.
Royaldevon (27611) 2014-01-20 8:25
This looks like a wonderful place to visit. The houses have a similarity to those recorded in Biblical times.
You have shown us the ancient, the modern and the countryside, in this one photograph.
After seeing this, I Googled Yemen and was left in no doubt that this is not a safe place for westerners to visit. That is such a pity, with such interesting villages and scenery to explore, it would be mutually profitable to encourage tourists.
We will just have to be satisfied sharing your photographs.
My warm regards,
wolf38 (31088) 2014-01-20 8:32
Hello Gert. Steep mountain slopes, rocks, mud houses, people - and some pick up Today's Photo from the Hadramaut is impressive. It shows the Yemen as it is.
Best rgds, Wolfgang.
mrichat (1653) 2014-01-20 8:57
There are lots of things to see in your photo.a very compact pov with strong composition.natural colors and well balanced light.i enjoyed this photo.Thanks for sharing.
rychem (20885) 2014-01-20 8:57
Wiat a beautiful view of this desery city, great high POV, fantastic Arabic architecture, excellent sharpness, simply great
dta (64142) 2014-01-20 9:20
Hello Gert ,
An impressive plunging view on the square , with the outstanding buildings , and the arid moutains in the BG .
Stunning presence of all these pick-ups !
ourania (28400) 2014-01-20 10:41
a very attractive and intriguing cityscape in the desert. This time your presentation of the "Manhattan of the desert" is close and detailed and features a lot of cars too -the way they are parked is so strange and fascinating. I like how your point of view and composition lead our glance downwards and then upwards again. The excellent depth and clarity, the strong light and vivid colours bring this amazing daily life scenery to life. I wonder what daily life is like in this place, in the strong sunshine, the deep shadows, the peculiar buildings. Congratulations and thank you!
All the best, have a great evening,
siudzi (32829) 2014-01-20 13:00
Wow! What an interesting scene you discovered and photographed! The city with its unique architecture and cars in the foreground looks superb original and was perfectly presented from your selected POV. Like it a lot! Bravo!
worldcitizen (6655) 2014-01-20 14:45
Fascinating view of this town. Without the cars in the foreground, it would look like it did thousands of years ago. There are certainly lots of pick-up trucks, and it looks a bit chaotic! It's nice that you had an elevated view from the palace. Great WS photo, too.
PaulVDV (21173) 2014-01-20 15:00
Although I was never in the former South Yemen, I know several people here who have visited it in the 90s and they all told me of Shibam. Also of Sayun and Tarim. But I haven't seen much pictures of the two latter.
In Sayun you surely found an excellent POV to show us this second Manhattan of the Hadramout.
The town looks very picturesque and impressive and many buildings have the rock colour of the mountain behind it. The white buildings are probably the newest ...
Did you also find Sayun a fairly dirty and empty place as you wrote of Shibam ?
Some people remark that they're surprised by the number of cars. While North Yemen in 1988 looked medieval at most places, there were also a lot of cars and expecially jeeps.
I also like the picture in the workshop. The Sultan's Palace looks huge and impressive with the two tiny men at the bottom of the wall. It also looks like an impregnable fortress.
Best regards, Paul
siamesa (27733) 2014-01-20 15:07
Boa noite Gert
Interesting architecture. thanks for sharing thie beautiful and interesting photo with us.
carlo62 (29483) 2014-01-20 16:02
queste immagini sono una vera ricerca nel passato, anche se non antichitā, ma qualche anno c'č.
Ottima ripresa, il pov č eccellente e ci permette di godere di una bella vista, il soprannome di Manhattan lo merita abbondantemente.
npecanhuk (62564) 2014-01-20 16:06
What an interesting, unique and exotic place!
Weren't those cars, I'd assume it had been taken decades ago!
Sharpness, exposure, colors, large vertical format, chosen pov and composition are all excellent!
TFS - congrats,
abmdsudi (41284) 2014-01-20 19:01
First of all, congrats on such a high quality scanned image as if it was taken yesterday:) The colours are natural with excellent white balance. Impressive high view point looking down at those desert-friendly skyscrappers which are almost camouflaged into the harsh hot environment but they look small dwarfed by the jabel to the left. The toning works well too, the exposure is second to none at high noon, also of interest is the foreground reflecting frenzy of human activity judging by the vehicles around. This is a breath taking shot so well set off to background blue sky for at least cools the whole scene and this picture. Very well done, Congrats.
saxo042 (37062) 2014-01-21 0:09
Ser man bara till bilarna skulle man kunna tro att detta är I Texas, bara sådana där pickups eller vad det heter. Själva landskapet är ju också lite av vilda västern. Det enda som är annorlunda är ju arkitekturen. En mycket intressant bild!
PS fick du brevet?
dkmurphys (47690) 2014-01-21 0:20
What a superb capture of this town. I like the panorama and the choice for the vertical. Well taken.
mesutilgim (81424) 2014-01-21 0:28
Hello dear Gert,
If I see this, than I think how happy we are with much green around us but we are not aware of !
Here the only green is some small palm trees squesed by buildings.
Nice capture with many interesting notes.
TFS and best regards
pajaran (49690) 2014-01-21 1:15
Interesantan tekst o starom gradu, sa opisom ...
Dobar rad skeniranjem slajda, lepo pokazana tradicionalna arhitektura.
Lepa fotografija i secanje.
Imajte lep i uspesan dan, sve najbolje.
An interesting article on the old city, with a description ...
Good work by scanning the slide, well demonstrated traditional architecture.
Beautiful photos and memories.
Have a nice and successful day, all the best.
Subhogen (4065) 2014-01-21 1:27
That is a fantastic view of an old town from the Mid-East. The cliff is providing such an attractive backdrop for this little town. From your high POV you have shown every details of this town. Fantastic image quality for a scanned photo dating back to 1998. One thing is for sure the residents of this town are not jealous about each others house, they are all so uniform and identical. Thanks for sharing a very less known part of our world.
Wanda1 (14980) 2014-01-21 1:38
It seems like the main form of transport is the pick up van ;-) .The buildings blend in with the surrounding landscape but seem small in comparison to the hillside that overlooks it. An image worth seeing.
I was reading in our newspaper that a South African man has recently been kidnapped in Yemen and is soon to be executed if the family can not raise the money. It seems like a more peaceful place when you visited there.
SnapRJW (30115) 2014-01-21 3:35
How did I miss this shot Gert? It's superb. What a fascinating overview of the town with the mud highrises! This is a sight I would really love to see with my own eyes. I presume the low building in the FG is a shopping centre or market; boxes are piled up and the number of vehicles parked outside give the impression of a busy shopping day in any town on earth. The difference though is the striking architecture and rocky terrain. Superb! Warm regards Rosemary
Nicou (118192) 2014-01-21 5:07
quelle image quel ciel avec la trace des nauges sueprbe et la belle montagne et se découpage tout en ocre et toues ces belles mainsons blanche et brune sueprbe compo et vue.,
Bravo et amitié
Fis2 (83230) 2014-01-21 6:26
A very interesting city.
Excellent colors, light and sharpness.
Very well done.
Have a nice afternoon
subhendu_bagchi (25410) 2014-01-21 7:06
it is a razor sharp image indeed. Great composition. Wonderfully exposed. Those architectures are nice to see with such a nice background. Superb colour quality and excellent depth. Great work. Tfs.
Silvio1953 (118330) 2014-01-21 8:28
Ciao Gert, great view of fascinating old city in the desert, excellent clarity, splendid light and wonderful warm colors, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio
Kamilutka (8095) 2014-01-21 10:05
it is truly amazing how resilient people can be and how they can adapt to the surrounding them conditions. This city in the desert is just another example of this everlasting power which forces us to go further and further. Very good POV allows to see quite big part of the city and gives one really good view over the buildings. The hills included in the image indicate exactly where the city has been built. Great natural colors and well managed light.
Thanks for sharing
chrislo (4151) 2014-01-21 10:06
What a fascinating place ! I wish I could travel back in time to see these places you show us, when the country was relatively safe to visit. I like the impressive and unique sight of this town which looks as if it was carved out of the rock itself. The harmonious combination of the architecture and the natural scenery makes a very attractive image. The blue sky sets off the earthy colours of the mountain and buildings beautifully. The composition is spot on. Very well done.
gildasjan (41212) 2014-01-21 10:09
L'arričre plan donne la bonne échelle ā cette image.Bel accord de teintes entre le bleu de ce ciel et les teintes chaudes du relief et de l'architecture.
Romano46 (16584) 2014-01-21 11:19
delle tue foto dedicate allo Yemen sicuramente la pių bella e la cosa incredibile che, nonostante la scannerizzazione, con l'inevitabile perdita di dettagli, essa appare di una nitidezza e di una ricchezza di dettagli incredibile.
Magnifici sia i colori che la composizione e se non fosse per qualche auto che fa intuire l'anno in cui l'hai scattata sembrerebbe una foto fatta oggi con una buona cam digitale.
Ciao e buona serata
InasiaJones (31448) 2014-01-21 16:39
A South African biology teacher is currently held hostage in Yemen by al-Qaeda since the 27th of May, for a ransom of $3 million USD... So although this city possess a strong appeal and a unique personality, I guess it isn't the right timing to add it to my priority list of places to visit...
So I consider yourself very lucky and somehow adventurous to have been there. I don't know to which extent it is feasible to walk freely in these (few) streets, but without a doubt, it must be a thrill, providing a sense of being in a very singular place. Your strategic point of view allowed a good sense of the place from within, different from the images I am used to see from the outskirt. A place I would really like to visit, when the political situation might allow it.
I will have a look at your other shots from this place and read your notes.
adidas5nb (4648) 2014-01-22 0:18
this is a special pic from an exotic location.tells so much about the country and the culture.what an amazing pov.
trevormoffiet (2860) 2014-01-22 3:36
Det finns mycket att studera i den här bilden. Detta är ett mycket bra dokumentation av denna stad i öknen. Den låga byggnaden i mitten är en självklar fokus för jemeniter. En studie av de bilar som omger centrum avslöjar att de flesta är 'utes' eller 'utility' lastbilar. Många är dubbelhytt och många är enkelhytt.
Den kulle ovanför staden ser hotfullt med de lösa stenar på sluttningen. Några större stenar verkar ha potential att krascha på staden.
emka (75143) 2014-01-22 3:41
Amazing architecture of Yemen. Where you found such a high POV ? It must be fun to stay in one of these houses. This supermarket, already open but the building still unfinished reminds me similar buildings from Peru. Whole cities looking like this.
WArm regrads Malgo
eldancer1 (26110) 2014-01-22 7:31
I like your high pov of the center of this town and the inclusion of the mountains in the background. I wonder if this place is as peaceful as it look now. Good lighting and sharp details. Well done, tfs.
mcmtanyel (11631) 2014-01-22 10:40
What an exotic place and what a charming photo to share, especially with me at this time. When I left for work this morning, the dashboard was indicating a temperature of -1° F (= -18.3° C). My hands have not quite warmed up the whole day and I can just imagine the dry, bone-warming heat of this desert town. What a nice souvenir you have of these beehive buildings at the bottom of this majestic hill. very well preserved and well-scanned slide, TFS!
fabbs99 (16147) 2014-01-22 10:47
Excellent shot of the golden desert town.Nice colors and sharpness.Very well done.TFS.
imageme (1625) 2014-01-22 13:28
Hi Gert, Brilliant city view with sand hill in the BG. Excellent POV and composition with great details and sharpness. Interesting buildings with nice blue sky along with many activities happening on the ground. Splendid light and colours. Thank for sharing
boa (5881) 2014-01-22 14:00
en mycket fin och intressant bild från Yemen, kanske din bästa! (vi har inte sett alla än)Än en gång ångrar jag mig djupt att jag inte reste hit när det var möjligt, som jag nämnde tidigare. Staden här ser nästan overklig ut, speciellt när man ser berget i bakgrunden som hotar staden om det rasar från toppen! Tänk bort bilarna så är man 100-tals år bak i tiden! Det vertikala formatet var ett bra val här så att du fick med det viktiga berget i sin helhet. Fina färger och en fin överblick! (vad sägs om att åka tillbaka? haha!)
kato (11630) 2014-01-22 19:54
You're capturing well this town by a good angle and excellent tone/clarity, so it's interesting and impressive to see the a lot of buildings with unique shape in foot of mounatain. It's also impressive in the color contrast with single tone of brown and white outer wall, and many cars/trucks in square. It seems to constitute original race society.
jhm (136728) 2014-01-23 4:10
Almost incredible a city middle of the desert, these picture is fifteen year old, but very in the actuality.
Colours and presentation make these picture attractive.
Sharpness and clarity be superb.
Very well done, TFS.
Enjoy the day ahead,
lousat (73987) 2014-01-23 4:34
Hi Gert,spectacular view on this village and its incredible but typical architechtures,magnificent choice of point of view and excellent scannering work as usual! Have a nice day and thanks,Luciano
Kielia (23055) 2014-01-23 6:55
you are adding an interesting impression of Sayun to the gallery here. Excellent light brings out the colors and contrasts in this fascinating scene. The photographers perspective is also excellent. My compliments also for the notes!
macjake (54124) 2014-01-23 17:25
is it just me or does it look like this is fake!
looks like a TOY set-up
its funny hot sometimes photo's can do that.
I wonder if its the way the buildings are set against the hillsides, therefore the perspectives are all out of wack? not sure...
of course i'm not saying its a fake photograph, it just seems odd to me for some reason. Maybe i've been staring at the computer screen for too long :)
anyways...i think its absolutely cool to have a city in the desert like this.
Its also funny how all the white trucks are similar with the same red stripe down the side! notice that?
Angshu (55035) 2014-01-23 22:05
The Sultan's Palace...is it also made of dried clay?
The architecture is marvellous...I haven't heard of or seen any pictures of Sayun, but the piture which you present shows so many details which is worth exploring...wonder how the place looks today! Another fine post!
josepmarin (57627) 2014-01-24 2:43
I admire the quality of these old photos, which you have scanned perfectly from slides.
The unique architecture of these buildings, its shapes and its construction techniques, makes them a true wonder of the world.
I like the contrast between the houses and the cars which crowds the streets, and the good light and natural colors as well.
The framing is structured well.
A beautiful work.
aleXundar (1256) 2014-01-24 8:57
What a great view -- from top of the hill to the grounds ... and everything so clear. Colors are great too. Wonderful pov with almost the whole town in one frame! An outstanding image.
annjackman (18511) 2014-02-09 0:35
The city is mainly built of materials that blend in with its dry, rocky mountainous environment. Your viewpoint is interesting and there is plenty of detail to observe. The Yemen is a place that few people visit so it makes it even more interesting to view it through your eyes.
Very well photographed.
Kind Regards, Ann
COSTANTINO (52862) 2014-02-09 11:53
every time I visit your gallery I am suprised
about the treasure of photos you have
this one is too real for me because I
am feeling being into this frame
you must be very pround about your
photos this is very interesting
view of the centre and Old town
of Sayun in southeastern Yemen
adores (35106) 2014-02-09 15:46
Great view you had from there! Seems the lower buildings in foreground are more recente, probably for shops, and all those desert skyscrapers are just great near the rocks. A very unique country, I'm sure.
And forget about the quality of the Ws, the photo is good and it's always great to see a place we don't see here often! Good post!
NorthernLight (1903) 2014-02-11 8:06
En underbar kombination av vackra färger. Blått, vitt och ockra med olika nyanser. Dessutom en intressant plats med intressanta detaljer. Man undrar om de människor som bor där har ingen rädsla för sten laviner.
En vacker bild av en ovanlig plats.
Vänliga hälsningar från Härjedalen
serp2000 (38864) 2014-02-12 4:08
Excellent photo and bla bla bla, but I'd like to say you about the last news from Algeria about The C-130 crash. Reason: the snowy storm. In Algeria. I can't explain it...
Best wishes from hospital! I hope to go home in the weekend.
jemaflor (82128) 2014-02-14 8:31
a photo well composed with architecture, cars and people to give life and an excellent effect in this blue sky with these clouds, tfs.
claudeD (31261) 2014-02-18 6:16
very fine picture from Yemen showing this unsusual view of a city in the middle of the desert. Excellent high pov and fine clarity.I like the view very much.TFS.
With regards from Luxembourg
Ninello52 (7542) 2014-02-25 11:29
This fantastic picture! Testimony of a reality for us in the West, really amazing! Where this magnificent panoramic sembranodi clay houses, cars and live in a desert with extraordinarily great!
Best Regards, Nino.
Didi (55567) 2014-03-09 1:39
The best part of this picture is on the background with these original typical houses
And of course the tocky mountain
Tigerlily (3053) 2014-04-27 12:07
A superb shot. Wonderful colour and detail..I nearly mistook it as a digital image. Thanks Gert.