Discover the beauty of this misterious country, the Sultanate of Oman with White Oryx

Sohar

Sohar

When he visited Sohar, al Maqdisi described it as "the gateway to the east a prosperous, beautiful city and a pleasant place to live with a large number of inhabitants." He noted that its residential areas were strung out along the shore and that its mosque, which overlooked the sea, had a tall minaret and a mihrab that changed colour because it was plated with copper. In his book Mu'jam al Buldan (Geographical Dictionary) Yaqut al Hamawi refers to Sohar as "the kasbah of Oman", while al Farisi, author of Hudud al 'Alam (Boundaries of the World) describes it as "the market-place of the whole world." In his book Al Masalik wa'1 Mamalik (The Roads and Countries) al Istakhri says it is rich and beautiful - a description which indicates that even at that time it was economically prosperous and a haven for the ships that plied the Arabian Sea. Amr bin al `As - the Companion of the Prophet who brought the Prophet's message to Abd and Jaifar, the sons of al Julanda and kings of Oman, inviting them to embrace Islam - visited Sohar in the 3rd year of the Hijrah/624AD.In later years, Sohar was one of the richest ports in the Islamic world and ships sailed to it from China and India and unloaded cargoes to be sold in its souqs. 
Historians admired the fine buildings along its seafront and described the town in the most glowing terms.
The Wilayat of Sohar is 240 Kilometres from Muscat and borders on the Wilayat of Liwa to the north, the Wilayat of Saham to the south, the Wilayat of Buraimi to the west and the Gulf of Oman to the east. It has a 45-Kilometre-long coastline and an area of around 1,728 square Kilometres. Its mountains extend for over 70 Kilometres. A traveller approaching the wilayat from the south will enter it through Majz al Kubra and drive through it until he departs through Majis in the north. Recognizing Sohar's historical and economic importance and potential, the government has transformed it into one of the most beautiful cities in Oman. The past has left its mark on every part of Sohar, but a tour of this wilayat would not be complete without a visit to Sohar Fort - an imposing white building near the sea which has witnessed the twists and turns of Sohar's history over the ages. The Sultan Qaboos Mosque, which stands beside the fort, occupies an area of 16,992 square metres and its 1,394 square metre main prayer hall can hold over 2,090 worshippers. The mosque has a well-stocked library. To celebrate Sohar's glorious seafaring history, the ship "Sohar" sailed from Muscat for the Chinese port of Guangzhou at the command of His Majesty the Sultan in 1980. The return voyage ended in 1981. The vessel was an identical copy of the ships of the Middle Ages and navigated with the aid of the sun and the stars.Sohar also used to be an important commercial centre for overland caravans travelling to other regions of the Sultanate laden with goods from faraway places.Anyone entering Sohar will be amazed at the sight of its gigantic gates, like the Sohar Gate at the wilayat's eastern entrance at its border with the Wilayat of Saham. These entrance gates are shaped like a line of boats with their sails raised, symbolising the ships berthed in Mina Sohar harbour and their importance to the local economy. The city's roundabouts and open areas have been embellished with lawns, flower-beds with seasonal flowers, fountains and ponds, with models depicting aspects of the region's history, civilization and environment, including a terrestrial globe in the Omani Islamic architectural style and a date-palm to represent economic activity. The Sallan Roundabout has an Islamic-style dome above a giant incenseburner, symbolising the country's attachment to its traditional values. Other roundabouts display aspects of Oman's environment and heritage.  
Traditional Occupations
The people of Sohar are employed in a wide range occupations and crafts, many of which are similar to those found in other parts of the Sultanate. They include fishing, ship-building, gold and silver jewellery, Omani halwa, metalwork, and leatherwork and palm-leaf wickerwork. Visitors to Sohar can visit the craft market to see the craftsmen at work and learn more about local crafts and products.