Bait Al Nuaman archaeological landmark in Barka

BARKA: Bait Al Nuaman Fort is one of the most notable historical tourist attractions in the Wilayat of Barka. Many tourists visit this historic, architectural landmark. Ibrahim bin Sabeel al Balushi, a Tour Guide at the fort, said: “Since centuries, the journey between Muscat and headquarters of the Ya’aribah rule in Al Rustaq and Al Hazm on the backs of camels and horses was arduous. “In the middle of the road between Muscat and Al Rustaq, Bait Al Nuaman Fort was built in the 17th century as rustic shelter, as well as a guesthouse for the Imams of Ya’aribah on their travels from and to the capital in Al Rustaq. It is believed that Bait Al Nuaman Fort was built about 1691-1693 during the reign of Imam Bal’arab bin Sultan, who had his seat of rule at Jibreen Fort. It is also believed that Bait Al Nuaman Fort was built at the initiative of the Imam Saif bin Sultan al Ya’rubi, brother of Imam Bal’arab bin Sultan,” he said.
Al Balushi further said: “Imam Saif bin Sultan, who succeeded his brother in the position of the Imamate, was a man with a vision. He built a strong merchant fleet and worked to activate foreign maritime trade and the implement reclamation project in order to raise agricultural production. So, it is said that during his period more than a third of the trees in the country were grown, as he gave orders to grow about 600 date palm trees, and 300 coconut trees in the west of Bait Al Nuaman Fort, in the fertile soil of Al Batinah Plain, and many palm trees still run for several miles in the west”.
He pointed out that Bait Al Nuaman Fort was renovated by Imam Ahmed bin Said al Busaidi (1749-1783) after nearly a century of the building. The building was fortified by strengthening the walls and the construction of two new defensive towers on the diagonal axis, which enabled the guards to shoot in all directions, so the luxurious countryside house, which was only originally equipped with openings for guns and barricades, was transformed into a fortress.
To enter the fortress, one has to pass through a carved wooden gate under an arch that is placed in an open rectangle made of decorated plaster, a wide hall leads into five rooms; each with vaulting, and the ground floor rooms receive light from windows located at the top of the walls.
The Ministry of Tourism conducted a comprehensive maintenance for the fortress and also organised a historical exhibition that deals with the history of the fortress, as well as the cultural and historical symbols of the Wilayat of Barka in order to highlight the traditional legacies and crafts the wilayat is famous for.
He added that service facilities were lately completed, including guide office, toilets, a cafe and a souvenirs shop of Omani craft products, in addition to the expansion of parking area and beautification of the in-house and out-house yards of the fortress.