This Mauritanian city was set up around the 17th Century. It started off as a Caravan City, which thrived between the 13th and 14th centuries thanks to the Trans-Atlantic trade. It was part of the Ghana Empire and later the Mali Empire and was one of the places visited by Moroccan explorer, Ibn Battuta, who said:
My stay at Iwalatan (Oualata) lasted about fifty days; and I was shown honour and entertained by its inhabitants. It is an excessively hot place, and boasts a few small date-palms, in the shade of which they sow watermelons. Its water comes from underground waterbeds at that point, and there is plenty of mutton to be had
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Although it was later sidelined by Timbuktu, it is still inhabited in presently even though parts of it is in ruins.