One of the the major appeals of Europe - in my eyes at least - has always been it's rich history. The old age of this ancient landmass is reflected in almost any of its cities or towns. Numerous archaeological finds, dating back centuries in time make this continent an absolute paradise for anyone who finds history intriguing.
To me it is of outermost fascination to walk around the streets of old towns, where the tides of times can be read in every cobbled stone, where one can physically touch walls which has seen centuries of life and death, laughter and tears - where thoughts that redefined our history were conceived and decisions that changed our world were made.
The fact that I live in one of the fifty oldest cities in the world - and actually in the oldest Scandinavian city - makes my location on the map quiet interesting.
On the same note one would ask; Which is the oldest city in the world?
The answer to this is actually not that simple. After researching the web I found that another question should be asked first; what is actually considered a city? Closely followed by the limiting factor whether one is looking to find the oldest continuously inhibited city or just the absolute oldest city, that no longer exist. That of course is somewhat tricky, as the oldest city might yet have to be uncovered.
As the case is with any information find online, I have to say that there are conflicting reports to what is actually the true oldest city in the world. However, most sites list Damascus, the capital of Syria, located on the Asian continent as the oldest known city in the world. Inhabited as early as 10000 BC, it became a city of importance first around 1400BC. This is closely followed by Jericho (3000 BC) located on the West Bank and Byblos (5000 BC) in Lebanon.
In Europe, the oldest cities are found on the Greek Islands of Crete; Chania and Larnaca on Cyprus, and Athens, on the European continent, all dating back to around 1400 BC.
On the African continent, the oldest city Fayium is positioned in Lower Egypt dating back to 4000 BC.
In the Americas, the oldest city is considered to be Ticul in Mexico, from the 7th century BC and in the US most likely Acoma Pueblo and Taos Pueblo in New Mexico with settlements dating back to ca 1075 AD.
In 1999, archeologist began an excavation of Hamoukar in northeastern Syria, most likely the oldest city in the world, or at least one of the oldest. Inhabited some 6000 years ago, it came to redefine the traditional concept of the city appearance and the civilization on Earth.