NB: Some of the years in this article (especially Damascus) are historically estimated years from findings. However, they are backed by records and archeological factual discoveries. Therefore, there may be other cities that may have existed before.
10) Varanasi, India – 5,000 years old.
Known as the birthplace of Hinduism, Varanasi is known as the oldest city in India and has its earliest human inhabitants as far back as 11th BCE.
The city is located near the Granges River in the Northern Indian region of Uttar Pradesh, which till today continues to attract tourists and worshipper’s from all over the world.
The Golden Temple of Shiva is also located in this city!
9) Plovdiv, Bulgaria – 6,000 years old.
The city of Plovdiv is historically located in the ancient Thrace region. The city is known as the cultural centre of Bulgaria and Historians cite that evidence exists that inhabitation of the region goes way back to 6th BCE, especially in the Nebet Tepe Hill.
8) Sidon, Lebanon – 6,000 years old.
Known locally as Saida, Sidon is located on the Mediterranean sea and has been in existence for at least 6000yrs according to Historians.
The ancient city was bride to constant conquering (in no order) by the Babylonians, Assyrians, Greeks, Egyptians, Persians, and Romans alike. Must have really been an important city to warrant such constant occupation.
There were also biblical reference to this city, with Jesus, Paul and Herod the Great all said to have visited the place at one point in time.
7) Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan – 6,000 years old.
Erbil is the capital city of the Kurdistan region, Iraq. According to Historians and Wikipedia, it was known as Arbella and is currently the most populated city in the region.
From history, Arbella has been a place of continuous occupation by Greeks, Persians, Mongols, Romans, and the Ottoman Turks.
The city is also host to the Erbil Citadel and is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
6) Susa, Iran – 6,300 years old.
Susa was one of the most paramount cities in Ancient Near East ( what many will say is the ancestors to the current Middle East), and located near the Tigris River.
During its peak, Susa served as the capital of Achaemenid Empire as well as that of Elam. Again, during the Parthian rule, the ancient city of Susa also remained an important and strategic place.
It is believed that the city was probably rebuilt soon after its destruction by the Assyrian Empire.
5) Athens, Greece – 7,000 years old.
Athens is one of those ancient cities that have been featured heavily in Hollywood movies, especially when Greek mythological entities are being utilised.
According to Historians, the earliest known inhabitation of Athens can be traced back to the 7th – 11th BC.
Athens is also historically known to produce many widely known philosophical truths and inquisitions and has helped define democracy which has had numerous importance on modern westernisation principles in Europe. Popular philosophers like Plato, Aristotle and Socrates are examples of the gift Athens gave Europe and the world.
Athens is currently still bubbling as a metropolitan city in current day Greece.
4) Argos, Greece – 7,000 years old.
Argos is located in Argolis, and under the administrative region of Peloponnese, Greece. It is the largest city in Argolis and one of the oldest cities still in existence today after a continuos inhabitation that has spanned centuries.
Argos is notably known for its Swiss-like neutral attitude during the Greco-Persian Wars. Argos is currently being occupied by an estimated 22,000 people, and has a lot of historical heritage sites and monuments.
3) Byblos, Lebanon – 7,000 years old.
Historians clock the earliest human inhabitation of Byblos between 7,000 – 8,000yrs. The ancient city can be found 42km north of Beirut.
Byblos is also generally believed to be the oldest and largest ancient city in Lebanon at the time, and have witnessed continuous and extended human occupation for centuries. The amount of human waste archeologists have uncovered in the city also lay credence to this.
Byblos is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
2) Aleppo, Syria – 8,000 years old.
Allepo is located along the Mediterranean Sea, giving it easy access to the oceans and a viable hub for trades. This is what made Allepo a thriving commercial area in ancient times.
According to historians and archeologists, Allepo has been continuously occupied since 8,000yrs ago.
At the moment, the clashes between the officially recognised Syrian government and rebel forces have forced most of the inhabitants of Allepo to flee the region.
1) Damascus, Syria – 11,000 years old.
Most people who are familiar with biblical stories must have heard about this ancient city. Even one of Christianity’s greatest apostle to the gentiles, Paul, was converted on his way to Damascus.
Damascus is the capital city in present day Syria and the oldest city in the world. According to research and studies, the earliest known habitation of the ancient city of Damascus was probably in the second millennium BC.
Damascus is part of the Official UNESCO World Heritage Site and is mostly referred to by many as the capital city and cultural centre of the whole Arab world. Currently, Damascus is a metropolitan city in the partly troubled country, Syria. In 2008, it was named “Arab Capital of Culture”.