Wednesday, December 26: After eating a lunch of chicken soup, an omelet and chapati at a typical Arab restaurant in Ibra, we head down the road from Ibra to explore some more ruins in Al Mudaybi.
While heading in that direction, we come upon brown signs for Al Rawdah Fort. We park in the village below, along the falaj, and children simultaneously getting off their school bus happily greet us: “How ARRRD you? How ARRRD you?”
We take some pictures with the exuberant children and then climb up steps to the fort. We’re greeted by a gentle curator who doesn’t speak much English. He takes us around the quiet fort, which we have all to ourselves; at the top, we have fantastic views of the village, random ruins and date palm plantations.
Click on any of the pictures below for a full-sized slide show.
After this we poke around in the falaj, finding an interesting insect that looks like a deformed blade of grass.
We then continue our drive in the same direction, where we come upon Bait al Khabib. It is not only closed but the entire village seems to be deserted. We walk around the outside and walk briefly through the attached village. We don’t see a soul in sight as it is probably nap time.
I’m ready at this point for a nap myself. Though we intend to drive on to Al Mudaybi, I just don’t have the energy for it. At this point it is 2:30 and, as is usual with my frequent bouts of insomnia, I have been up since 4 a.m. We decide to call it quits and head back to Nizwa. Between our explorations of the fantastic Ibra ruins earlier, and these amazing forts, it’s been a wonderful day-after-Christmas adventure.