Tag Archives: small town Oman

Misfat Al Abriyeen

Sometimes I’m glad to be lost while traveling around Oman!  It is at those moments that I often find the most fascinating spots.  On a recent trip coming back to Muscat from Al Hoota Cave, getting lost lead me to the towns of Al Hamra and the more famous tourist spot of Misfat Al Abriyeen.

I’ve seen plenty of white dishdasha scarecrows around Oman but this was the first scarecrow I’ve seen made out of ladies clothing!

Don’t forget to stop and smell the flowers as you walk around and explore Oman (or anywhere else you may be for that matter!)  🙂

Just one quick example of the beauty of the entire region around Nizwa!

This is just one picture I took of the small town of Al Hamra which is located about 40 kms from Nizwa.  You have to drive through Al Hamra to get to the more impressive Misfat Al Abriyeen.  Al Hamra is an enchanting village and well worth a visit on its own (sometime in the future, God willing!)!

Not the best shot but I wanted you to see the winding road that leads up the mountain to Misfat Al Abriyeen from Al Hamra.  It may not look like much but it’s quite a ride up that road with plenty of twists and turns!

This is looking down on Al Hamra from one of the first rest areas on the ride up to Misfat.

Such are the sights you are treated with at the top!

Rogan Fort is one of the famous landmarks of Misfat Al Abriyeen.

Falaj al Misfat is a source of life to the banana, citrus fruit and palm trees that make up the well maintained agricultural terraces.  To learn more about Misfat Al Abriyeen and its falaj, click here to read this interesting article from Oman Observer titled, “Misfat Al Abriyeen: The Secret of Jabal Shams”. 

This is a pic of the main tourist information center at Misfat.  Great maps and info provided by the Ministry of Tourism!

My friend and travel companion on this trip, Devin, giving you a fine example of how picturesque the village of Misfat can be!

Scenes of Sifah

Village Views Between Rustaq and Ibri


near Magham

The small town of Qarti with a population of no more than 400

Two gentlemen from the village of Qarti.  The man on the right is Saeed alGhafri and he told me that most of the residents of Qarti are al Ghafris and that as a result, the nearby wadi is called “Wadi Al Ghafri”.  He was even kind enough to invite me in for tea! 🙂

You really do need to take care when driving through these small towns which are sometimes right along the highway.

Have You Ever Been to “Hadbeen”?! (Southern Oman)

If you’re looking for “small town Oman”, Hadbeen is it!  If you ever get the chance to drive the Salalah-Hasik road in Dhofar, Oman, don’t blick when driving through Hadbeen/Hadbin, or you just might miss it!!  Oman2Day magazine describes Hadbin as “an unmemorable fishing village” and I think they were right on the money!  Hadbeen village – Gents Tailoring  In Canada, we describe tiny towns as “a one horse town”.  In Oman, I guess you might call them “one street towns” or “one mosque towns”.  Well, Hadbeen has one tiny mosque and one tiny street.  Imagine stating, “I live on Hadbeen Street“.  (“You’re nothing but a has-been living on “had been street”, ha!ha! 🙂 )  Most of the homes are not that impressive here.  This shop owner was probably confused about the difference between “Foodstuff” (like what we would call “convenience stores” in Canada…) and “Fodder” shops.  Put them together with a lack of English and voila, you get “Fooder“! 🙂  (The Arabic indicates that this store is supposed to read “Fodder”.)  Hadbeen Public School and front gate  I like this scene on leaving Hadbin for the 160 km drive back to Salalah: sea coast, mountains and sand-dune all in one!

Hasik Village, Southern Coast, Oman

  The charming but not so exciting seacoast village of Hasik – 200 kms from Salalah  The best views of Hasik are from the small harbour that one can reach by driving through the town.  “Hasik itself, with its unique harbour, was well-known to Arab seafarers as a trading centre on the Arabian Sea, particularly for merchants trading in top quality hawjari frankincense. Hasik has a natural sheltered harbour. Popular picnic spots during the rainy season include the cascading waterfalls of Natif and the overflowing pools fed by the springs of Shairookh and Ain ‘Aidhah. In earlier times traders used to meet on the edge of the town to barter over their wares, which would then be loaded onto ships and transported to East Africa, Yemen and India.” (from omanet.om)
  Here’s another blogger’s post on Hasik from 3 years ago.  Interesting to note that the paved road out to this isolated spot of Oman was only completed in 2005.  A dhow out at sea near Hasik – Here’s a short vid I took of this coastal town  If you’re interested, read more about Hasik here.  This is as close as I could get to capturing the whole village from the harbour.  There only seemed to be 4-5 dozen houses in Hasik (not including the 200-300 villas that are under construction as part of a big building project going on there).  A typical home in Hasik  This home may seem ancient but it is still being used today!  What are these?  My guess is crab nets but someone told me they’re for collecting honey.  Any experts out there?  A close-up example of the villas they are constructing in Hasik  Small town Oman!  More info on Hasik here:  http://home.kpn.nl/~janm_schreurs/Hasik.htm  There’s not much to do once you’ve seen Hasik but to turn back to Salalah and prepare yourself for the repeat 200 km trip!  There are the impressive Natif cliffs and (sometimes present) waterfall 6 kms down the road, but if you venture any further than that you will be stopped by Omani military personnel demanding that you turn around. At least you’ll get to enjoy the majestic ocean/mountain views once again on the ride back to Salalah!  🙂