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"Aali" redirects here. For people with the name Aali, see Aali.
A'ali is located in Bahrain
Coordinates: 26°09′07″N 50°31′32″E / 26.15194°N 50.52556°E / 26.15194; 50.52556Coordinates: 26°09′07″N 50°31′32″E / 26.15194°N 50.52556°E / 26.15194; 50.52556
Country Bahrain
 • Total 100,553

A'ali (Arabic: عالي‎) is one of the biggest towns in Bahrain. It was formerly a part of the municipality of Mintaqah but since 2001 lies within the Central Governorate. A'ali is famous for its ancient burial mounds, especially defined by several very large burial mounds in the middle of the city centre.[1] A'ali is also famous for its old pottery handicraft, which can be seen and bought from different potters and boutiques in A'ali.[2]

Geography and demographics[edit]

A'ali is located in the middle of Bahrain island, south of Isa Town and north of Riffa. A'ali is famous for its burial mounds and its home for the National Driving School. A'ali is a relatively new suburb of Bahrain. First construction in the area started approximately in the late 1970s to early 1980s. Today, however, A'ali is one of the largest towns in Bahrain housing many of Bahrain's middle and high class families. A'ali is a cosmopoltian city; the nearby A'ali village is mainly a Shia town.

Burial mounds[edit]

The A'ali burial mounds.

The burial mounds date to the Dilmun era (3200 BC-330 BC). The site was excavated by many foreign archaeological teams throughout the 20th century.[3] An important group of artefacts was excavated by the British archaeologist Ernest Mackay that can now be found in the British Museum, London.[4] It includes an unusual statuette of a nude women with curvaceous body dating from between 2000 and 1500 BC.[5] The discovery of a "new and rare type of burial mound encircled by an outer ring wall" has led archaeologists to believe that specific mounds were made for the social elite, indicating that early Dilmun culture had a class system.[6]


The mounds have come into controversy in Bahraini politics; In July 2008, the municipal council chairman of the central governorate called for the demolition of 62 ancient burial mounds to make way for the construction of a nearby junction.[7] In 2009, the construction of a museum dedicated to the history of the mounds and of A'ali was announced.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Go Reader Go". The Irish Times. 2008-11-29. p. 15. 
  2. ^ "Feats of Clay". Bahrain Guide. Retrieved 2 September 2012. 
  3. ^ Rice, Michael (1994). The Archaeology of the Arabian Gulf. Routledge. pp. 33–48. ISBN 978-0415032681. 
  4. ^ British Museum Collection [1]
  5. ^ British Museum Collection [2]
  6. ^ Laursen, Steffen Terp. "Early Dilmun and its rulers: new evidence of the burial mounds of the elite and the developmentof social complexity, c. 2200–1750 BC". Academia.edu. Retrieved 2 September 2012. 
  7. ^ "Bulldoze A'ali burial mounds". Gulf Daily News. 12 July 2008. Retrieved 2 September 2012. 
  8. ^ "New museum near A'ali Burial Mounds". Gulf Daily News. 16 August 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2012.