Bidbid – Where time stands still

The most amazing characteristic of the Wilayat of Bidbid is the hanging bridge over the valley connecting Muscat with Al Dakhiliyah’s wilayats. When we talk about Al Dakhiliyah, Bidbid comes up first as it is the gateway to the governorate. Previously, the wilayat was located 70 km away from Muscat, but now they adjoin each other due to rapid urbanisation witnessed in both areas.

The wilayat is famed for its picturesque wadi that divides its banks into two parts. Bidbid borders Al Seeb on the north, Wadi Al Tayeen on the east, Samayil on the south and Eastern Al Hajr Mountains on the west.
Wadi Fanja often has running water especially after usual seasons of rain. Most of the residents and visitors enjoy lovely evenings here, especially on weekends. The wadi is beautifully surrounded by date palms and other trees. The peaceful and tranquil place offers ambience for a great day out. What distinguishes the place is that it has springs that gush from the top of Al Hamri mountain. The area enfolds many aflaj that have become tourist destinations.
Among the main villages of the wilayat is Fanja. It offers a unique mixture of old and new landmarks. It comprises many ancient buildings like towers, castles and old houses built of mud on the mountains overlooking the wadi. Many people from Fanja and the neighbouring villages come to Fanja’s souq either as buyers or sellers who showcase a wonderful collection of handicrafts that are locally made.
The souq exhibits antiques and household products as well as dried fish displayed in the yard of the souq. It also includes artistic products made of wood such as decorated boxes, called Mandoos, in which people used to keep clothes. Pottery is also sold in the local market which is well-made and beautifully decorated with different shapes and colours.
As evidence to its rich heritage, the wilayat includes 40 towers scattered in different villages. One of the most historic landmarks is Bidbid square castle that is located in the centre of the wilayat. Bidbid Fort is a beautifully renovated example of Omani heritage. It was one of the first to be restored using local construction materials such as palm tree trunks, which are used to support parts of the fort’s roof.
The Wilayat of Bidbid enjoys many government services like eight public schools, Sultan Qaboos Mosque adjacent to the public road, health centre and military and security apparatus.