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The Batinah Plain, Oman

North of Muscat lies an area of cultivated land sandwiched between the Jebel Akhdar massif and the ocean. Protecting the springs that form at the base of the mountains was historically important as they allowed the Batinah Plain to be made fertile, and so a series of forts were built.

Today three have been expertly restored: Rustaq, Nakhl and Al Hazm. A trip to these forts is a photographer's dream: crenulated battlements draw the eye towards the extensive palm plantations and towering mountain backdrop.

Dungeons, secret passages, painted wooden ceilings and collections of ancient muskets are all to be found, and you can also admire how the original architects incorporated knolls and outcrops of rock into the forts’ designs to strengthen their defenses.

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Audley Travel specialist Paula

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Map of the Batinah Plain

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near the Batinah Plain