Nizwa: In a first of its kind in the Sultanate, visitors to Al Aqar village in Nizwa, one of the most important heritage spots in Oman, can ride in electric cars to travel back in the past!
The tours will start from Nizwa Heritage Inn and will include Al Aqa village, Nizwa Souq, Aflaj (such as Falaj Dars, Falaj Al Ghantak, Falaj Dhot), Omani Halwa Factory, Al Aqar Wall, old villages adjacent to Nizwa Fort (Al Shahba) and other tourist places in Nizwa.
Initially, the cars will be for the guests at the inn but the public will also get a ride soon.
Sulaiman bin Mohammed bin Sulaiman al Sulaimani, an official at Bawareq Nizwa involved in the development of the Nizwa Heritage Inn, said, “The project initially includes four cars – Two cars can accommodate nine people while the other two can accommodate six guests.
Recharging is easy and driving uncomplicated and smooth with a speed of 40 kilometres per hour’’. As for the challenges faced, al Sulaimani said: “Through my experience in driving these cars between farms and villages, I found some challenges.
One of them is the condition of the street as it is damaged by leaking sewage and water. We will try to repair these roads ourselves so that they are ready for driving. There is also waste in the farms that block the road. It needs to be cleaned’’. Yousef al Anqoudi, Chairman of Abu Yamna Trading Institution, said, “The procedures of the project started in October last year after getting approval from the Royal Oman Police, Ministry of Tourism and other authorities.”
He said that the cars were imported from China with a specified colour and design to suit the castle.
“We seek to make Nizwa a more prominent tourism destination in the country. We want to ensure that the tourists not only visit the castle but also other attractions in the area. Tourists can use bicycles or cars to facilitate their travel between narrow places. It is also an opportunity for everyone to experience electric cars,” he said. The project was launched after Abu Yamna Trading Institution and Bawareq Nizwa International for Investment signed a memorandum of understanding for the operation and investment of electric vehicles. The car project is the result of a series of activities that Bawareq Nizwa planned to set up, starting with the transformation of old houses into a heritage property in the last two years which is now called the Nizwa Heritage Inn.