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Souks (Markets) in Oman


Al Dhalam Souk

This intriguing souk starts at the Al Lawatiya Mosque and runs to Khour Bimba. Al Dhalam means ‘darkness’, an appropriate name for this area since the narrow alleyways receive little sunlight. When the market was originally built from mud and barasti, shoppers used lamps to find their way around. Today it is slightly more modern and there are paved alleyways and lanterns on the walls to light the way. The Al Lawatiya quarter was previously closed to foreigners, even non-Lawati Muslims. However, now you are free to wander around to your heart’s content, browsing through the silver jewellery, traditional Omani ornaments, textiles and spices. Please note that you should dress appropriately and leave your camera behind.

Muttrah Souk

Every place has its distinctive flavour and every city has a market that relates its stories, embraces its history and accompanies its evolution. Muttrah Souk is one of the oldest markets in Oman, dating back about 200 years. Its antiquity has perhaps increased the extent of its beauty, magic and allure.

You can't see the souk from the outside, as it stretched deep within the city. The market starts at a gate facing the Sea of Oman and Mutrah Corniche, and ends with another gate in the city’s old quarters that usually receive the majority of visitors coming from other Omani towns and villages.

The souk is known for its handicrafts like silverware, daggers, traditional cloth, new apparel and shoes, in addition to the famous Omani sweets (halwa), spices and braziers (receptacles in which incense or frankincense is burned).


Nizwa Souk

Nizwa Souk is a two-hour drive from Muscat, in the vicinity of the walls of the famous Nizwa Fort. Its building embraces both traditional and modern architectural lines. Through its many alleys and divisions, it has remained for hundreds of years home to a number of local industries, such as daggers, copper, spinning, livestock sale, fish, vegetables and handicrafts.


Al Hafah Souk

Set in the coconut groves, Al Hafah Souk lies three kilometres from the city of Salalah. It is surrounded by lofty coconut trees and is the perfect place to buy the best kinds of gum and incense, not only in the Dhofar region, but also in the Sultanate. The souk is replete with a variety of products, including traditional textiles and clothing, gold and silver jewellery as well as many other traditional artefacts. Local coffee shops serve snacks such as hummus and mishkak (Omani style barbecued meat).

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