Rowdha's rich antiquity
fort has two watchtowers, the taller of which stands independent of
the rest of the structure, but, from afar, looks part of it. Each
tower has three rooms. The main structure is made up of six rooms
and a storeroom. Standing sentinel on rocky hills nearby are several
other smaller watchtowers
magnificent Al Rowdha fort in the wilayat of Al Mudhaibi Picture
by Khamis al Moharbi
A'Shan in the wilayat of Al Mudhaibi
is steeped in history, as is evident in the fine fortifications and
archaeological sites located around this niyabat. Also, there are
oasis villages here of picture-book appeal that, together with the
niyabat's rich antiquity, makes a visit here a richly rewarding experience.
In today's episode, we turn the spotlight on Al Rowdha, a tiny village
of breathtaking charm. It lies on the fringes of the mightly Wadi
Samad which meanders through the Sharqiya and Al Wosta regions before
meeting the Arabian Sea at Mahawt.
Rowdha is located just 3km from Al Akhdar, another picturesque village
in Samad A'Shan, known for its oasis ambience and rich historical
legacy. Towering above the verdant countryside is Al Rowdha's most
famous landmark, Bait Hus'n al Rowdha. A dirt track snaking along
the bed of a dry wadi brings you to this imposing edifice at the entrance
to Al Rowdha village. The Ministry of National Heritage and Culture
renovated this elegant edifice, built atop a rocky outcrop, in 1988.
The original structure, it is believed, was built by local citizens
in the 1900s, at the end of the reign of the Nabhani dynasty.
the years however it underwent major structural changes, losing some
of the original towers in the process. Today, the fort has two watchtowers,
the taller of which stands independent of the rest of the structure,
but, from afar, looks part of it. Each tower has three rooms. The
main structure is made up of six rooms and a storeroom. Standing sentinel
on rocky hills nearby are several other smaller watchtowers. For foreign
tourists and local visitors alike, Bait Hus'n Al Rowdha is one of
Al Mudhaibi's better-known tourist attractions. A visitor's book maintained
at the fort is a testament to the numbers of tourists who come here.
around Samad A'Shan are many other gems of antiquity. Vying for attention
on another rocky outcrop in the distance is another impressive edifice
called Bait Awlad A'Thaneen. It was built by local residents around
the same time as Bait Hus'n A'Rowdha. One of its two towers has since
collapsed.Samad village also has its share of historical treasures.
Overlooking the sprawling date tree plantations is Samad fort, otherwise
called Hus'n al Khubaib.
not of great antiquity, it was built on the debris of early fortifications.
It was used by the presiding wali well into the 1970s and thereafter
went into ruin. Deeper into the village stands the Hozam bin Falah
fort, billed as the biggest and oldest of all forts in Samad A'Shan.
Currently in a state of spectacular ruin, this once grandiose structure,
was two-storeys high with four towers and seven water wells. It began
collapsing some 65 years ago, it is learnt.
of Samad A'Shan's special charm lies in its verdant cover of date
palm trees that grow along the edges of Wadi Samad. Located amid this
verdant swathe are fruit orchards nourished by bountiful streams.
You can stroll through this pleasant natural setting while exploring
Al Akhdar village, just 3km from Al Rowdha. There are atmospheric
mud homes and crumbling mansions deep within this luxuriant cover
that also invite discovery.Standing in the old quarter of the village
are remnants of the famous Al Akhdar fort once a splendid edifice,
with a formidable tower of stone and limestone plaster, and a total
of 17 rooms.
Adapted from Oman Observer. Nizwa.NET is not responsible for contents.