Barawe Coastal Town, “Portuguese City”


Brief history

Barawe is one of Somalia’s oldest coastal towns. The capital of the Southwest regional government is situated in the Lower Shebelle region. It is located about 220 km from Mogadishu.

It has been narrated by well-known historians about how Barawe was discovered. Oral history, however, tells that Aw Ali was Barawe’s first settler. He visited a wide area between Goobwein and Barawe before moving on, Aw Ali liked the freshness of the ocean air and ordered his people to clear the forest and build a variety of houses for him and his family inside. This was the beginning of 900 AD.

Until the settlement of Aw Ali, Tuni Shangamas used to live the area surrounding Barawe with their livestock. The presence of Tuni in the region was instrumental in Aw Ali’s decision to settle the region. Aw Ali himself is believed to have descended from Tuni Shanghamas.

In the medieval era, Barawe fell under the Ajuran Empire along with the rest of southern Somalia and some other neighboring countries. The region was invaded by the Portuguese in 1506, which was determined to maintain control of Barawe both for its location and trading routes across the Indian Ocean. Despite the city being burned to the ground at the Battle of Barawe, the resistance that the Portuguese faced eventually forced them to retreat.

At the end of the 1880s, Italy acquired what was to become Italian Somaliland (a region that included Barawe) and the region remained under Italian rule as the fascist dictatorship of the country gained more power. Along with the likes of Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Djibouti, the area became East Africa, Italy, in the 1930s, until it was lost to the British during the Second World War.


Barawa and surrounded has a population of around 32,800 inhabitants the broader Barawa District has a total population of 96, 901 residents


Barawe has many popular tourist attractions. Visitors are fascinated by the beauty of Jilani’s historic building.

It also includes the impressive village of Ambareysa, which is part of the Barawe district. The last place to visit is the castle of Ziyad Barash, and the place has a wonderful history.

It was one of Barqash’s main headquarters. Other interesting things to see in Barawe include camel carts, Arabian-style houses, and Barwani cuisine. Barawe is also famous for tailoring Barwani dresses, hats, and more

The facility of Barawe City

Barawe is good for accommodation and food, the city has classic hotels including Shamo Hotel, Hotel Africa, and Hotel Balanbaalis, and also has good restaurants and gust houses.

Airport of Barawe is opened last year and working properly as well as Barawe Port reopened when south west State announced to be the Capital of Southwest State.