Saturday, June 16:  After visiting Khasab Fort, we begin our long drive back to Nizwa, making a stop about 25km south of Khasab in the modest little town of Bukha.

the view of the town of Bukha, including Bukha Fort, from Al Qala’s Fort

We first drive up to a little hilltop where we find the ruins of Al Qala’s Fort, which overlooks the town.  There isn’t much here except the ruins of an old watchtower and a great view of the bay.

Al Qala’s Fort in Bukha

Al Qala’s Fort

the watchtower at Al Qala’s Fort

looking into the ruins

Tom in the watchtower

Tom playing king of the castle

the plantations on the back side of Al Qala’s Fort

the parting view of Bukha, Bukha Fort and the bay from Al Qala’s Fort

After probing around in the ruins and admiring the view of the date palm plantations in one direction and the Arabian Gulf on the other, we drive down to the old Bukha Fort, which sits right along the coastal highway.  When the fort was built in the 16th century, it stood right on the shore, but now the water has receded.  The fort is surrounded on three sides by a dry moat where, according to legend, prisoners were once chained to drown in the rising tide.

Bukha Fort with its circular southeastern tower

Boxy rectangular towers sit on opposite corners of the fort.  The southeastern tower is circular and curved inward at the top to reduce the impact of cannonballs.

the other end of Bukha Fort

Bukha Fort from another angle

Behind the fort sits the town’s old mosque that is unusual in that it looks more like a house than a place of worship and lacks both a dome and minaret.

the old and abandoned mosque in Bukha

After we pass through Bukha, we head on our merry way home, across the UAE border, through UAE, and back to Oman, after a very convoluted route!