Ghardaïa (Arabic: غرداية , Mozabite: ) is the capital city of Ghardaïa Province, Algeria. The city has a population of 104 645 (2005 estimate).


It is the traditional heart of the M'zab valley, home of the Ibadi Muslim sect in Algeria, and has preserved its original medieval architecture remarkably well; the valley of which it forms a part is an official World Heritage Site. Ghardaia is renowned for its coarse goat hair carpets, generally with simple geometric patterns in black and white.

Ghardaïa and its Rugs: The area of the M’zab known since the stone age as attests the traces and, sculptures rupestral found on the spot, various civilisations concentrated become vestiges today. Ghardaia, known under the name of the pearl of the oases is regarded as one of the most important tourist areas in Algeria and more particularly in the sahara (south). Five valleys of the M’zabs are found, all enclosed by walls and gates in the middle of the Algerian desert, where nobody enters or leaves without guide or authorization. The carpet of M’Zab has a very beautiful love story behind. The Tapestry offered by the bride to her future husband for their engagement, asking him, for her and their hearth, the wedding presents through the figurative drawings which she wove, which is called the belt of the bride. Each symbol has a well defined representation. Only one carpet can take up to six months to complete considering its complexity, and the message transmitted through its patterns carefully chosen, which all have an Amazigh inspiration (Berber). The colors used are generally natural mineral or plant origin. The most used colours are five: White, black, red, yellow and green. In addition, vivid and modern colours and shades come to enrich the range of hue range used as well at the background and the patterns. The modern colours of the Rugs like blue, beige-brown natural colours are obtained mixing unbleached and brown wools at the time of carding.


It is served by Noumérat - Moufdi Zakaria Airport (or simply Ghardaïa airport).

See also

2008 floodings

The town was hit by flooding in october 2008 due to heavy rains

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