Sunday, April 02, 2023 | Ramadan 10, 1444 H
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Sab Bani Khamis.. the Jewel of Jabal Shams

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The Wilayat of Al-Hamra abounds with many tourist sites and is unique in mountainous areas of pristine nature, its moderate temperatures in the summer, and freezing cold in winter.

Jabal Shams still holds many surprises for its visitors, lovers of tourism, travellers, and adventure enthusiasts. Its towns or villages are hardly devoid of beautiful scenery and tourist areas. However, accessing these sites most of the time is not an easy thing, as it requires patience, endurance, will and strong determination.

Among those areas is the "Sab Bani Khamis" area, which is located in Jabal Shams, below the Hail Al-Raq area. visitors to the “Sab Bani Khamis” area have to take the road leading to Wilayat Al-Hamra, and when they reach the roundabout near the gas station, they should head towards the west and continue driving until they reach the village of Al-Minthar in Wadi Gul. after that they should begin to climb to Jabal Shams until they reach the roundabout of the village of Al Khatim close to the Jabal Shams tourist resort. from the Al-Khatim area, they should head to the bank that leads to the steep gully, and then start walking on a path along Wadi Al-Nakhar for one hour until they reach the Sab Bani Khamis area. The ruins of the old houses still exist even now, despite the fact that the people left them decades ago, and most of these houses have been destroyed, and they are built of stones and mud, and their roofs are made of trees.

The site of Sab Bani Khamis is unique in the abundance of water throughout the year as a result of the continuous rainfall, in addition to the waterfalls descending from the tops of Jebel Shams. The rains create a number of waterfalls that finally flow into Wadi Al Nakhr, which is one of the deepest wadis in the Sultanate. the area is also the home for swimming lovers because of the large water pool, as well as for hikers and skydivers.

There is also a large cave, from which water falls in the form of drops. stalagmites and stalactites were formed as a result of the flow of this water from the top of the mountain. The people benefited from this water in the past, so they built canals and made agricultural terraces under this lake. the remains of agricultural meadows remain to this day.

Hamad Al Khateri, director of one of the tourist rest houses in Jabel Shams says “shurfat al Nakhr (balcony) is close to the high summit of Jabel Shams, and it serves as a collection and drainage hole for rain water coming from the wadis of the mountain. It has become a magnet for tourists and those coming to visit Al-Hamra.

“The height of the balcony is more than 2,400 meters and in some places it reaches 3,009 meters above sea level. Al-Nakhr village is located in the middle of the Canyon and surrounded by wadis. There are also several land roads linking the balcony to the bottom of the wadi”.

Jabal Shamsis the highest peak in the Sultanate of Oman, with a peak of over 3,000m and 20 degrees cooler than in Muscat city. Wadi Ghul is often named Oman’s ‘Grand Canyon’, a majestic semi-circular canyon, mid-way around the rim of which is the ‘Balcony Walk’ – featuring amazing views through the valley, village ruins and centuries old Pomegranate trees.

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