Ksar Tafilelt (in Arabic قصر تافيلالت) is an Algerian city in the wilaya of Ghardaïa , known for its ecological design.

The city is located 600  km south of Algiers , on the edge of the Sahara , near the historic city of Beni Isguen , it is nestled at the top of a plateau which dominates the Mzab valley .

The idea of ​​building an ecological city was born in the 1990s, in the context of a housing crisis and the massive construction of concrete housing.

It was in 1997 that the Amidoul foundation was created by Ahmed Nouh. The latter bought the twenty-two hectare (0.22  km 2 ) land from the State, then promoted the project and offered interest-free loans for the purchase of houses.

The first housing distributions took place in 2000. The project is a social response to the housing crisis leaving mostly poor and young populations without land to afford for housing. Priority has been given to families as well as to women with dependent children or dependent parents.

The city was inaugurated in 2004 by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

In 2013, the threshold of 6,000 inhabitants, living in a thousand houses, was reached.

In 2014, the city received the Arab League Prize for the Environment.

InNovember 2016, during the COP 22 in Marrakech , it obtained the first prize for the sustainable city.

The 6,000 inhabitants of the city are mostly Mozabites of the Ibadi Muslim religion . A charter makes the touiza compulsory , that is to say participation in work of general interest, such as construction or cleanliness 1 .

The houses are divided into blocks of 28 to 30 houses, in which each is responsible for cleanliness in turn. 

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Discover Tafilalet Palace.. the typical eco-city in Algeria

Tourism is one of the most growing sectors across the world because of its positive effects on various social, economic and cultural aspects.  With interest in Algeria, we find desert tourism, which has become an important economic and social option, due to its distinction from other types of tourism in terms of natural and environmental diversity, and considering it as an alternative development model aimed at achieving sustainable development.

   Ghardaia is known for its architecture and its many palaces, including Ksar Ghardaia, Bannoura, Al Qarara, Brian and Taginet (currently kindness), and Malika, Beni Yazqn, the latter being one of the five palaces in Ghardaia classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage Organization.

 The Tafilalet Palace of the “Bani Isguen” Palace is located on a rocky summit in the Mzab region of Ghardaia, in the north of the Algerian desert.

  This palace is an exemplary human experience unique in Africa, as it combines authentic architecture, sustainable development and preservation of the environment.  Amazigh), where the city appears as an ancient historical heritage with the smell of originality, while preserving the fragile environment in the region famous for its palm oases.

 Tafilalet Palace in Beni Isguen, Ghardaia Province, is the best place to visit:

 The idea of ​​constructing this city appeared in 1997 by Ahmed Noah, the owner of the project, with the participation of Mozabite engineers and experts, as an alternative to the reinforced concrete that distorted the oasis of Bani Yazqen.  The establishment is 22 hectares of rocky land located 600 km south of the capital Algiers at a cheap price, although it overlooks one of the oldest palaces in the region, which is the “Ksar Beni Isguen”.

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 Notables from Beni M’zab contributed with their own money, and the state provided subsidies, and the first residents participated in the construction work through a famous tradition in the Algerian desert called “Twiza”, which is collective participation in volunteer work.

  It was completed according to traditional architecture using stone, gypsum and lime, instead of the cement that deformed the 1000-year-old oasis of Azgen, and these materials were chosen because they provide good insulation from heat and external noise in addition to their low price.

  The palace currently includes a thousand and fifty houses of one height, not exceeding a ground floor and an upper floor, all of which are built according to the local architecture with modern amenities.  While the houses were painted in natural colors, which are the shades of yellow, brown and white suitable for high temperatures, the windows were designed from wood mesh to preserve the privacy of the homes and provide natural ventilation, as the difference between the internal and external temperature in summer reaches 5 degrees.

 Tafilalet Palace in Beni Isguen, Ghardaia Province, is the best place to visit

 The palace won several international and local awards, including the prize for the international competition entitled “Model Sustainable Neighborhoods”, which was organized in Marrakesh, Morocco, and the results of the competition were monitored based on a vote by Internet surfers.  The world is a role model and the best place to visit

 The “Amidol” Foundation in Beni Isguen (Ghardaia) won the “International Energy Globe 2020”, which is one of the world’s most prestigious awards in the field of environment and sustainability granted annually by the Austrian Energy Globe Foundation for the achievement of a palace with a unique lively climate, “Tafilalet Palace”  “.

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 The award was given to the president of the “AMIDOL” Foundation and the initiator of this project, Mr. Ahmed Noah, in the presence of the commercial advisor to the Ambassador of Austria to Algeria, Mr. Franz Bachleitner, members of the “AMIDOL” Foundation, and local notables and elected representatives from the region.

 Ahmed Noah, the owner of the palace project, sees “here the modern coexists with the heritage in order to obtain an ecological city suitable for life.”

 As for daily life inside the palace, it has its own distinctive character, as “the region is governed by laws and rules concerning all aspects of life, from good neighborliness to wedding parties. Life is organized according to a charter signed by all residents.” The city is perhaps the only one in the world that does not need a police and a judicial council because  Everything is organized and based on everyone’s agreement.

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Mohamed SAKHRI

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On this blog you travel with us around the world and discover beautiful places, stories, cultures but also mysterious places and some are even bizarre.

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