Historical Forts and castles of Oman


Historical Forts and castles, built thousand years ago, are considered the most important historical monuments in the Sultanate of Oman, totaling more than one thousand eight hundred seventy historical building. One of the major achievements of the Ministry has been the restoration of these forts, castles and towers, whereas the restoration of over 77 old buildings ranging from fort, castle, tower, wall, historical building, traditional gates and markets (souq) were achieved successfully

One of the magnificent historical sites in Oman. It was built by Imam / Sultan bin Seif bin Malik Al Ya'arubi in ( 1059 A.H. - 1649 AD). It took him twelve years to accomplish and he spent all what he gained in one of his historical conquests known by ( Dio ) which was one of the largest Portuguese marine centers in the East

Nizwa Fort is characterized by its height, solid fortification and unique location, lying in the middle of Nizwa town adjacent to the old location of Nizwa Castle which was built by Imam / Al Salt bin Malik Al Kharousi in the beginning of the third Hijri century. In 1411 A.H.- 1990 the Ministry fully restored and furnished the fort with all traditional handicrafts and artifacts to attract tourists and visitors.

Located in Jibrin town in Welayat Bahla. It is a big rectangular building constructed by Bala'rab bin Sultan bin Seif Al Ya'arubi (1091 -1104 A.H) (1680 -1692 A.D.). It consists of three floors and fifty-five rooms. It is 43 meters high, 22 meters wide and its eastern wall is 72 meters long. The Castle is penetrated by Falaj Jibrin, which crosses it from the western south to the eastern north. It contains the tomb of the late Imam / Bala'rab bin Sultan bin Seif Al Ya'arubi. The castle was designed to be a beautiful palace for the Imam. The Ministry restored and furnished this monument in 1404 A.H. – 1982 A.D. and since then it is open to visitors.

It is a walled triangular shaped building. Its main buildings are located on a high land in the eastern corner. Some parts of the Fort may probably date back to the Pre-Islamic period. The Fort witnessed three renovation periods, the first one was during Nabhani reign ( 280 A.H. - 830 A.D. ), the second was during the reign of Imam Nasser bin Murshid Al Ya'arubi ( 1034 A.H. -1624 A.D. ), and then was renovated during the reign of Imam A'azan bin Qais Al Busaid ( 1285 A.H. - 1868 A.D. ). Due to the importance of the fort, UNESCO listed it in 1490 A.H. - 1988 A.D. –on the World Heritage list. Restoration works are still being carried out in this Fort.

Located on top of a high mountain of 200-meter height. Its construction is dated to pre Islamic period and was restored in the 3rd & 10th century A.H. during the reign of Bani Kharous and Ya'ariba Imams. The gate, fence and towers of the fort were built during the reign of Imam Said bin Sultan in (1250 A.H. - 1834 A.D.). The fort was built on rocky platforms thus having a distinct and unique characteristic. In 1990 restoration works were completed in the fort and it was furnished with crafts and antiquities to attract tourists and visitors.

Located in Al Hazm town in Welayat Rustaq. It was built by Imam Sultan bin Seif (the 2nd.) in ( 1123 A.H.–1711 A.D.) when he established Al Hazm town as a capital of Oman instead of Rustaq. The Castle is distinctive from other Omani Castle and forts by its magnificent shape and massive building. It contains the tomb of its builder / Imam Sultan bin Seif (the 2nd.). It was restored by the Ministry in ( 1416 A.H. - 1996 A.D. ).

Located in Rustaq. Dated back to the first century Pre Islamic Period (Sixth century B.C.). It is a building constructed of special selected stones fixed together by mortar and mud - bricks. It contains several buildings and fortifications, which were used for housing and storage purposes. It is penetrated by Falaj Al Sa' eghi and contains several wells, Bayadha mosque, and the tomb of late Imam / Sultan bin Seif (Qaidh Al Ardh). The Ministry restored the castle in ( 1407 A.H. - 1986 A.D. ).

Located in Harat Al Hajara in Sohar town. Dated back to 179 A.H., It was renovated, to its present shape, in the (Eighth - Ninth century A.H.) (14th A.H. - 15th A.D.). During the reign of Imam / Nasser bin Murshid Al Ya'arubi, he was able to conquer and expel the Portuguese from this castle. Sohar castle remained as administration Centre for the ruling Al Busaid dynasty. The Ministry restored the Fort in 1985 and used it as a museum in 1993.

Dated back to the 19th. century or earlier than that and located in the Welayat of Mirbat in Dhofar Governorate. This castle played defensive and administrative roles throughout history. It was restored by the Ministry in 1991 and was officially opened in 1996 on the occasion of the Year of Heritage. It was furnished and equipped with handicrafts from Dhofar Governorate and from the other Regions of Oman.

Located opposite to the seacoast in Welayat Khasab in the north of Oman. It consists of four buildings surrounded by a wall and it was built in the sixth century A.D. The Ministry restored it in 1989.

One of the oldest castles in Welayat Badiya. Built during the reign of Imam / A'zzan bin Qais Al Busaid ( 1285 A.H. - 1868 ) and was used in the past as a center for the Welayat. The Ministry restored it in 1989.

Located in Hamasa town in Welayat Buraimi. It was called ( Al Khandaq ) because of the ditch surrounding it . It is a square shape building with four circular towers and a main gate surrounded by high fences . The Ministry restored it in 1994.

Which are among Oman's most famous forts stand at the entrance to Muscat bay. Mirani, which was built before the arrival of the Portuguese, was originally shaped like a tower. Then in 1588 the Portuguese rebuilt it on the ruins of its old structure, adding emplacements, stores, living quarters for the commander and a place of worship. The building was enlarged to its present size in the reign of Imam Ahmed bin Said, the founder of the Al Busaidi state in the 18th century, and his grandson Sayyid Said bin Sultan, at the beginning of the 19th century. The forts of Al Jalali and Al Mirani are the capital's most prominent landmarks and were built in the 16th century AD. The Portuguese completed their construction of Jalali Fort in 1587. Its present-day form dates from the reign of Sayyid Said bin Sultan, and this Fort was restored and converted into a museum in the reign of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said.