From the coast of Oman we headed inland and visted the old towns of Nizwa, Bahla and Jabrin. Here is a selection of my images. All images can be viewed and ordered in my new webshop.
Nizwa is the largest city in the Ad Dakhiliyah Region in Oman and was the capital of Oman proper. Nizwa is about 140 km (1.5 hours) from Muscat. Nizwa is one of the oldest cities in Oman and it was once a center of trade, religion, education and art. Its Jama (grand mosque) was formerly a center for Islamic learning. Nizwa acquired its importance because it has been an important meeting point at the base of the Western Hajar Mountains. Set amid a verdant spread of date palms, it is strategically located at the crossroads of routes linking the interior with Muscat and the lower reaches of Dhofar thus serving as the link for a large part of the country. Today, Nizwa is a diverse prosperous place with numerous agricultural, historical and recreational aspects. Nizwa is a center for date growing and is the market place for the area.
Bahla Fort is one of four historic fortresses situated at the foot of the Djebel Akhdar highlands in Oman. It was built in the 13th and 14th centuries, when the oasis of Bahla was prosperous under the control of the Banu Nebhan tribe. The fort’s ruined adobe walls and towers rise some 165 feet above its sandstone foundations. The fort was not restored or conserved before 1987, and had fallen into a parlous state, with parts of the walls collapsing each year in the rainy season. The fort became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987. It was included in the List of World Heritage Sites in danger from 1988. Restoration works began in the 1990s, and more than £6m were spent by the Omani government from 1993 to 1999. It remained covered with scaffolding and closed to tourists for many years. It was removed from the list of endangered sites in 2004. It is unfortunately still being closed and therefore it was not possible to visit the fort.
Jabrin Castle is located in an oasis between the mountains of Jabal Akhdar. It was built in 1675 by Sultan Bila’rab bin Sultan al-Yaarubi as a summer residence. The palace was also a centre for learning. Although it has the form and structure of a military fort, it never served this purpose. The large, rectangular castle is three stories high and has more than 50 rooms. Many rooms lead from one to the next and you are in a real maze with many doors, stairs, rooms and corridors.Share on Facebook