Walata and Tichitt. Mauritania
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Caravan cities of the Sahara
Walata and Tichitt, scenes of an old glory, conquered heroically over the hostile environment of the desert. Today, both cities are small and quiet villages that seem to doze under the burning of the saharan heat, and where numerous ruins witness a lost vitality, that traveler feels irrecoverably. Lighthouses left over the cliff of the commercial history of the Sahara.
With naked eye, it looks like an absurdity to qualify of cities these two venerable villages, placed to the south-east of the current Islamic Republic of Mauritania, wich scarcely have a few hundreds inhabitants. But undoubtedly, no other place from the vast Mauritanian desert can claim with major legitimacy the cosmopolitan stamp of its inhabitants. In an environment marked by the nomadism rigors and the Sahara caravans, Tichit and Walata always offered itself as a point of sophistication, as great creation centers of Islamic culture and, in sum, as fountains to spreading faith, and likewise as markets where nomadic economy revolve around and grow.