Rijal Al-Ma`a village in Saudi Arabia … an architectural masterpiece in...

, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – With its architecture and miniature stone fortresses at the top of the hill, the ancient village of Rijal Almaa is an unmissable destination in Saudi Arabia.
The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia Credit: unusualtraveler

The village of Rijal Almaa is located 45 kilometers from the city of Abha in the Asir region, and has a history of more than 350 years, according to the official website of Saudi Tourism, “The Spirit of Saudi Arabia.”

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
The village consists of about 60 palaces built of natural stones, mud, and wood Credit: unusualtraveler

For decades, the village of Rijal Al-Ma`a still retains its apparent beauty in its built-in towers studded with white quartz stone, making it one of the Saudi archaeological sites nominated for registration on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
The village of Rijal Almaa is distinguished by its unique architectural art, represented by tall forts built in an exquisite artistic way that combines beauty and mastery and the exploitation of spaces remarkably Credit: unusualtraveler

According to the Saudi Ministry of Tourism website, the village consists of about 60 palaces built of natural stones, mud, and wood.

The village includes a museum that embraces a legacy of unique pictures, works of art and archaeological artifacts, which was established by the efforts of the people of the province with the aim of preserving the heritage of their region, according to the “Saudi Spirit” website.

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
Rijal Almaa village is located 45 kilometers from Abha city in the Asir region Credit: unusualtraveler

And in an interview with CNN in Arabic, the photographer W.Travel blogger The Norwegian, Chris Lindgren, The village of Rijal Al-Ma`a is distinguished by its unique engineering construction, and its history as an important trading center with travelers between Yemen and the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina.

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
Village residents love the colorful decorations inside their palaces Credit: unusualtraveler

And the Norwegian photographer, who visited the archaeological site in December last year, believes that the interior design of the houses from the colorful paints on the walls is one of the highlights of what he saw during his trip there.

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
The history of the village of Rijal Almaa goes back over 350 years Credit: unusualtraveler

Lindgren likens the architecture of the village of Rijal Al Ma`la to the house of gingerbread, as the village buildings look similar in color and elegance with some gingerbread houses that are prepared in Scandinavia as varieties of desserts during the Christmas season, as he put it.

“The walls look like pieces of gingerbread, and the white decoration on the buildings is like the powdered sugar we use to stick the cookie pieces together,” Lindgren explains.

Lindgren asserts that the people of the village of Mena Al Ma`la welcome tourists with affection and kindness.

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
A resident of Rijal Al-Ma`a village wears traditional costume and a crown of flowers on his head Credit: unusualtraveler

Language can be a challenge for foreign visitors wanting to learn more about the history of the village, so Lindgren recommends that an English-speaking guide from Abha should be accompanied, he said.

The village of the brightest men in Saudi Arabia
The Norwegian photographer and travel blogger likens the ancient Rijal Village to a gingerbread house made during the Christmas season in Scandinavia Credit: unusualtraveler

Lindgren notes that there are many ancient villages and hidden gems in the area that it is impossible to find without a guide who knows the area well.

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