Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Bastakiya - Wind Towers

Away from the hustle and bustle of the modern Dubai lies a small and tranquil area that is filled with wind tower buildings. The area is called Bastakiya and wind towers buildings are the traditional homes unique to the countries around the Arabian Gulf. Wind towers are built on the rooftops to funnel air into the houses to cool them in the summer (basically, an old fashioned air conditioner). Very few of the original wind tower homes remain because most of them have been demolished to make way to the new buildings in the city. Existing ones have been renovated and some new ones are being built in Bastakiya. Most of them now house art galleries, cafes, restaurants and government offices. Walking along the narrow alley way between the wind towers is a great way to spend an afternoon to take photos. Every time you go there, you will find something new because of the on going renovation. It is so quiet and peaceful, you can actually hear the birds chirping and the call to prayer from the mosques near by. It is a true treasure almost lost, but glad they managed to preserve. Bastakiya, Dubai, at the end of Al Seef Street, close to the Ruler's Court and Dubai Museum, Dubai

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