Al Mukalla

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Al Mukalla
تاريخ «المكلا
Old City of Mukalla as seen from the Mukalla port.
Old City of Mukalla as seen from the Mukalla port.
Al Mukalla is located in Yemen
Al Mukalla
Al Mukalla
Location in Yemen
Coordinates: 14°32′N 49°08′E / 14.533°N 49.133°E / 14.533; 49.133
Country  Yemen
Governorate Hadramaut
Was founded as a fishing settlement in 1035
Population (2004)
 • Total 531,205
Time zone Yemen Standard Time (UTC+3)

Al Mukalla (Arabic: المكلاAl Mukallā) is a main sea port and the capital city of the Hadhramaut coastal region in Yemen in the southern part of Arabia on the Gulf of Aden close to the Arabian Sea. It is located 480 km (300 mi) east of Aden and is the most important port in the Governorate of Hadramaut, the largest governorate in South Arabia.

Al Mukalla is the fifth largest city in Yemen with a population of approximately 300,000. The city is served by the nearby Riyan Airport.


Al Mukalla was founded in 1035 as a fishing settlement. This area was included in Oman state until middle of the 11th century, and later this area was included in Yemen states.

It was the capital of the Qu'aiti State of Hadhramaut until 1967 when it became a part of South Yemen. The Qu'aiti State was part of the Eastern Aden Protectorate until that merger. A British Resident Advisor was stationed at Al Mukalla.

Some people of the tribe Bafana who migrated to India and settled in Hyderabad claims that their ancestors were rulers of this place.

In 1934, British traveler and explorer Freya Stark began her journey into the hinterland of the Hadhramaut from Al Mukalla, and her stay in that city is recorded in her book, The Southern Gates of Arabia.[1]

Mukalla port[edit]

Mukalla port is located to the east of Al Mukalla town. This port is available for the vessels with length not more than 150 meters as per Pilot Book Pilot Directions (up to 2010 year). At the same time two vessels with the length 150 meters each and about 20 small fishing vessels can stay alongside in Mukalla port (fishing vessel moored alongside one to another). Cement carrier "Pacific Arrow" - is the first vessel with the length 180 meters about that entered Mukalla port and moored alongside in February, 2010 (to see photos). This port fitted with oil pipe line for tankers. Oil tanks located close to the port. Cement factory of "RAYSUT" cement company (Oman-Yemen company) located in the port and is able to receive cement in bulk from cement carriers.

Al Mukalla city[edit]

If you will pass from Mukalla port to Al Mukalla you will enter Old City from the east, than you will pass close to the Quaiti Palace and after this palace you can reach New Mukalla City with canal and bridges. Plenty goats are walking in the Old Mukalla City. Plenty small fishing boats anchored close to the coast of Old Mukalla City. And plenty guard towers (outposts) surmounted the mountains around the Old Mukalla City.

Trading in the city[edit]

There is only one supermarket in Mukalla and not every citizen calls this shop a supermarket due to its small size. This supermarket placed only on the ground floor of the building on the northern edge of New City of Mukalla (It is condition on the February, 2010). There are plenty small shops and some markets in the Mukalla city.


Al Mukalla is situated not far from "Cane" or "Qana'", the ancient principal Hadrami trading post between India and Africa, with incense producing areas in its hinterland.[2]


The College of Medicine HUCOM of the Hadhramout University is located in Al Mukalla.


  1. ^ Stark, Freya, The Southern Gates of Arabia, John Murray, London, 1936 (and reprinted in many modern editions)
  2. ^ "Myos Hormos". Maritime Incense Route. Retrieved 7 Dec 2008. 

Coordinates: 14°32′N 49°08′E / 14.533°N 49.133°E / 14.533; 49.133