Erbil, Kurdistan is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in history. The first mention of Erbil in literary sources comes from the archives of Ebla, recording two journeys to Erbil (Irbilum) by a messenger from Ebla around 2300 BC. Later, Erridupizir, king of Gutium, captured the city in 2200 BC. It was an integral part of Assyria from around 2500 BC until 605 BC, and it remained part of Assyria under Persian, Greek, Parthian, Roman and Sassanid rule.
"Shibam, a town in Hadramawt, Yemen, is considered to have the world’s oldest skyscrapers. All of the town’s houses are made out of mud bricks. While Shibam has existed for around 2,000 years, most of the city’s houses come mainly from the 16th century." Photograph by Pascal and Maria Marechaux.
Kirkuk, Iraq Earliest inhabitation: 2,200 BC Located around 150 miles north of Baghdad, Kirkuk stands on the site of the ancient Assyrian capital of Arrapha. Its strategic importance was recognised by the Babylonians and the Media, who have also controlled the city. The ruins of a 5,000-year-old citadel are still visible, while the city is now the headquarters of Iraqs petroleum industry.