10 Ancient Cities Still Thriving Today

Ancient history and the cities dating from that period have played an important role in creating the world we know today. While the vast majority of huge empires and cities became a distant past, a number of some historic settlements remained to this day reminding us of the glorious ancient times.


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Jerusalem Is Considered a Holy City By Christianity, Islam, and Judaism

Jerusalem’s Old City has made it to the list of World Heritage Sites Credits: Business Insider

Jerusalem’s Old City has made it to the list of World Heritage Sites. Credits: Business Insider

Jerusalem, also known as the City of David, was founded around 2000 BC. Being the cradle of the three most populous religions in the world, it is needless to say that the city is overwhelmed with spiritual and religious sites. Even though  attacked 52 times, besieged 23 times and destroyed twice, the city has still kept its glory and magnificence.

Plovdiv Was Once Named ”Philippopolis” After Philip II of Macedon

The Historical Museum of Plovdiv has a lot to offer to tourists. Credits: Lonely Planet

The Historical Museum of Plovdiv has a lot to offer to tourists. Credits: Lonely Planet

Plovdiv is an ancient city founded somewhere before 400 BC and located in Bulgaria. The city has been conquered by many, among whom are Thracians, Macedonians, Greeks, Byzantines and Ottomans. The most prosperous times of Plovdiv were during the rule of Romans, when many public institutions, theaters, baths, and water system were built.

Varanasi Is Considered a Holy Place of Salvation

Varanasi is exceptional when it comes to the cultural diversity. Credits: Varanasi City

Varanasi is exceptional when it comes to the cultural diversity. Credits: Varanasi City

Varanasi is more than 5000 years old and is one of those Hindu cities most known for its pilgrim ceremonies. Being located at the merge of rivers Ganges, Varana, and Asi, it has been the perfect spot for pilgrimages and water ablutions. The Buddhists scripts in which the city is mentioned many times attest to its glorious history. However, this city is not an exception when it comes to anglicizing Hindu cities during the rule of the British, who named the city Benares.

Athens Is Said To Be The Founding Father of The Western Civilization

Athens has been the symbol of both Greece and Europe. Credits: Cornerstone International Group

Athens has been the symbol of both Greece and Europe. Credits: Cornerstone International Group

Athens is the capital city of Greece as well as the largest city in the country. During its 3,400 years long history, Athens has stood for the name of prosperity, freedom, and peace. Given the fact Athens was making substantial progress, it was also called the birthplace of democracy. Even though conquered a few times, the city has been never destroyed.

Damascus Is In Danger Of Getting Wiped Out

Damascus has been an important cultural and commercial center. Credits: Four Seasons Hotels Limited

Damascus has been an important cultural and commercial center. Credits: Four Seasons Hotels Limited

Damascus is one of the long-established history cities, which has been constantly inhabited since 6300 BS. During the Middle Ages, the city was a prominent center of trade and craft industry. The city can be said to have multicultural origins because of the influence of many civilizations, including the Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine and Islamic. Due to the recent civil uprisings, the capital city of Syria is threatened to suffer irretrievable losses.

Xi’an Is Best Depicted By the Great Wall of China

Xi'an is best known for the Great City of China. Credits: Thousand Wonders

Xi’an is best known for the Great City of China. Credits: Thousand Wonders

This ancient city is located in China and was one of the four great ancient capitals of the country. As of today, it is the city which is full of monuments and ancient ruins. On top of that, one of the Seven Wonders of the World is to be found in the city. Tourists visiting this magnificent city are also in a position to visit the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, a famous terracotta army king and leader.

Cholula Is Most Famous For the Great Pyramid of Cholula

Cholula is rich in churches. Credits: Olympic Tours

Cholula is rich in churches. Credits: Olympic Tours

Founded somewhere in 500 BC, this city started as a pre-Columbian city. The city has turned into a mixture of the ancient and modern history, making it a very popular tourist attraction. Cholula is also very rich in art and monuments, being the center of culture. What’s more, one of the biggest pyramids in the world is located here, whose inner temple is the biggest one in the new world.

Istanbul Was First Known As Constantinople

Istanbul, the city that lies in the two continents. Credits: Flickr

Istanbul, the city that lies in the two continents. Credits: Flickr

Currently, the capital city of Turkey, Istanbul has changed both his appearance and names many times. Until 1453 and the fall of the Byzantine Empire, the city was named Constantinople. Though the city went through relentless plunder and pillage, it has preserved its glorious history and monuments such as Hagia Sofia, which was once a church converted into a mosque by the Ottomans.

Lisbon Was An Important European Trade Center

Lisbon was the entering gate of Western Europe. Credits: The Tig

Lisbon was the entering gate of Western Europe. Credits: The Tig

Knowing the fact that Lisbon is one of the oldest cities in Western Europe predating even Rome or London, it goes without saying that there are many religious and funerary monuments in the city. Since the location of Portugal is suitable for trading, Lisbon has turned into an important trading post for many, especially the Phoenicians back in the day. Nevertheless, a devastating earthquake that struck the city in 1755 had left a devastating impact on Lisbon.

Rome Is Perhaps The Most Influential City in the Western Civilization

Rome, the capital of the greatest empire. Credits: Goista

Rome, the capital of the greatest empire. Credits: Goista

The capital city of Italy and once of the Roman Empire was found by two brothers Romulus and Remus in 753 BC. Since the foundation, the city has been turning into a city-state and ending as the greatest empire known to man. Although the empire can be said to be short lived, the Romans left traces all over Europe and the city in particular. Colosseum is one of the most visited attraction sites in the world, and it was built by the Romans for the entertaining purposes.

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