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Oman: forts, natural landscapes and traditions

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Oman (Saltanat ‘Omān) is a sultanate located in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula with the capital of Muscat (Muscat) which borders with the United Arab Emirates in the north-west, in the west with Saudi Arabia, in the south-west with Yemen is washed by the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian sea.

The state territory also includes the northern end of the Musandam peninsula, overlooking the Strait of Hormuz and separated territorially from the rest of the country, and the Madha exclave located within the territory of the United Arab Emirates.

Along the Gulf of Oman lies a narrow and fertile coastal plain, al-Batinah. Here are the main cities of the country, including Muscat, Matrah and Sur. Behind this plain rises the Jabal Al Akhdar mountain range, with the highest mountain in the country, the Jabal Ash Sham (3,035 meters).

To the south and south-west of this region there is a vast flat desert area covering most of Oman, formed by arid expanses of sand which in the west stretch towards the desert depression of Rub ‘al Khali. In the extreme southwest, on the border with Yemen, lies the mountainous region of Dhofar (or Zufar).


The country during the seventeenth century was the preeminent power in the western Indian Ocean. At that time, Omani control extended over a large part of the Persian Gulf, on the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula and on the African coast of present-day Somalia, Kenya and Tanzania.

Oman’s economy is mainly based on the exploitation of oil and natural gas fields, and to a lesser extent, of copper, chromite, gold and silver. Important are fishing (sardines, pearl oysters) and breeding (sheep, goats, cattle, and camels), agriculture is practiced in the oases (date palms, cereals (sorghum, millet, barley), fruit and tobacco) .

The climate of Oman.

  • Area: 309,500 sqkm. (Arable 2%, Pastures 5%, Forests and Woodlands 0%, Uncultivated and Unproductive 93%)
  • Population: 3,204,000 (2006 data)
  • State Capital: Muscat (Masqat).
  • Languages: The official language is Arabic.
  • Religion: Muslim 97% (Ibadhi 55%, Sunni 38% Shi’a 4%), Hinduist 2%.
  • Currency: Rial (OMR)
  • Time: UTC +4 hours.

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