Kaushalendra Singh – Salalah, May 26 – History is hidden in the city of Mirbat. Some 80 km east of Salalah, the city’s tranquility is so captivating that the visitors feel like getting disconnected from monotonous daily routine and feel refreshing in the true lap of nature.
The life goes on its own pace. No one is in a hurry here. As if everyone is occupied in his own world of peace and that is the best part of the place. It looks like a township that is trying to emerge out of the age old structures. In the struggle to understand the process, heritage and culture remains so prominent that people start living in Mirabat before they could realise that they have come here only as visitors.
The fishermen port located in the centre of city indicates the value of fishing and port for the people of Mirbat. This port is the centre of activity today and used to play an important role during pre modern times. The location of the Mirbat Fort very close to the port lets visitors connect with the past life of Mirbat, importance of trade through sea and an administrative set up to regulate things.
A leisurely walk from the port to the fort through the narrow lanes of the old Mirbat city is the best way to understand the history and inherent culture that it keeps. This is a challenge, however, how to preserve history as the old houses are in a dilapidated condition.
It is captivating to watch the doors, windows, provisions for locks and their engineering aspect of constructing double storey buildings. Almost every main door had a provision of a small door that allowed entry after proper body bending.
These houses are deserted yet look lively. They give the visitors a feeling of a close knit society that would have been flourishing very close to the sea. They look like a virtual museum of a city, which would have been prosperous and a major centre of trade.
The caves of Mirbat are good source of information for those who have interest in history and scriptures. Plenty of pre-Islamic writings can be seen in these caves.
From a tourist’s point of view, Mirbat serves a good centre to visit places like Tawi Attir sinkhole, bird sanctuary, Anti Gravity Point and Sumhuram, which dates back to 4,000 BC.
Every morning and evening the Fishermen Port is abuzz with activities as 50-60 big and small dhows are always parked there preparing either to start for fishing journey or coming back with loads of big catch.