His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tariq Al Said
Welcome to Oman
Marhaba, the traditional word for welcome in the Sultanate of Oman. Wherever you go you sense the air of tranquility and optimism. Genuine friendliness is something that you will experience in Oman. In fact the Omanis are proud of the fact that they are renowned for their good manners. One of your memories on leaving Oman would be the sincerity of her people.
Visit Oman and experience the essence of the Middle East's best kept secret. Oman is the best destination of the Orient. There is so much more to taste, to see and to explore. As you go through this album on Oman, you'll find yourself asking "What is it that makes this place so different? A place worth visiting ?" let us take a look...
Conservation is a major priority in Oman. Once you arrive in the country you will notice something very unique. A respect for nature.
A legacy that has been passed on from generation to generation. The art, the culture, the folkore and the artistry. But there is much more in the heart of Oman. The sense of respect for time, for people, for nature. An understanding of people who built these cities, travelled far and wide singing these folklore, searching and following the path of their hearts. Come and taste a part of Oman's rich heritage. Kept alive and unchanged for generations. It may help you understand tomorrow a little better.
Oman has a wealth of first class and luxury hotels and resorts, as well as a wide range of excellent restaurants offering Arabic and international cuisine. Travel agencies can arrange sightseeing tours of the cities and overnight trips to the interior. Buses and car rental facilities are available throughout the country.
From designer clothing to traditional Omani garments, Oman offers something for every taste. The souks have handcrafted jewellery and antiques, and a colorful array of products and foodstuffs imported from all over the Middle East and Southeast Asia. Merchants expect to haggle, and there are bargains everywhere.
You can scuba dive in the morning, wadi bash in the afternoon, enjoy fine dining and dance the night away. All in a single day. Or visit ancient sites and stroll through colourful markets. Photograph or film your choice of scenery. Go rock climbing or camping over night. Watch camel races, bull fights or just take in a sightseeing tour.
Oman more than just a visit. A way of life. So much more than a holiday. A chance to renew yourself.
If you are someone who has an understanding and appreciation of history, the arts, architecture and intricacies of a civil society, Oman is the place for you. From the ancient city of Nizwa to the towns along the coast to the capital to Salalah, all seeped in history, you can experience Oman's sense of timelessness.
Omanis have a great association with their heritage. An outward looking people, they have a renowned maritime history and the vital understanding that to know the future you must know your past. From their dress, their cuisine to their hospitality to their guests, they appreciate the benefits they have received from diverse cultures over the centuries.
Oman is an intriguing blend of the past and the present. From ornate silverware to detailed embroidery, Omani fashion is up to date and progressive. Visit shopping bazaars (Souqs) right out of the 'Arabian Nights' or the marvellous outlets in modern shopping centres. Your eye will sparkle at the wares on offer. Something for all the tastes and fashions. And treasures galore for the bargain-hunter.
Oman's 12,000 year old civilisation is still evident all over the country. Over 500 forts, castles and towers in architectural style are proud witnesses of a glorious past. A wide collection of historical books and manuscripts are on display for the historical buff. Vestiges of Oman's prehistoric past indicating the presence of nomads who were hunters and gatherers go as far back as 13,000 B.C. Amr Ibn Al As, the companion of the Prophet Mohammed arrived in Oman to preach the word of Allah in A.D. 630 leading to Islam, that became the state religion. The present reigning dynasty of the Al Bu Said began with Ahmad Bin Said who came to power in 1744.
Concern for the environment is the national necessity in Oman. The government ensures that economic growth occurs without destruction of the environment or loss of its renewable resources. Preservation of wildlife is a priority. Visit botanical gardens where Oman's varied flora is being nurtured and absorb an atmosphere of cleanliness and greenery.
Omanis are a courteous, friendly and spontaneous people. They are renowned for their unmatched tradition of hospitality. A manifestation of their heritage can be seen in their craftsmanship, superior nautical and agricultural skills and finely honed commercial acumen. Experience the essence of Oman... you will understand the heart of her people.
Oman is home for several rare species of animal. These include the Arabian oryx, a gazelle which came close to extinction and is now being reintroduced into the wild by the government, and a species of goat called the Arabian tahr. The offshore waters are a haven for many whales. Oman is a birdwatcher's paradise with many local species as well as migratory birds.
Castles & Forts
>> Al-Jalali Castle
>> Al-Mirani Castle
>> Ar-Rustaq Castle
>> Nakhal Castle
>> Sohar Castle
>> Nizwa Castle
>> Bahla Castle
The Primacy of Indigenous Materials
Design Features of Forts
Structural Changes over Time
The Future of the Forts
Oman's pride is its splendid coastline with long reaches of sandy beach. There are shells to examine and rocky caves to explore, and the water is always warm. Sailboats can be rented at the beach hotels and marinas, and tourism groups can provide for offshore cruising, fishing, and scuba diving.
Winter begins around October and continues to April, and the weather is cool and pleasant. Summer is between April to September and the Weather is hot and humid.