Oman


Oman tourism: Sand dunes and Ghaf trees of Al Jiza beckon tourists


Al Jiza attracts visitors, especially during the afternoon when the sun is at its spectacular best. Photo: ONA

Al Mudhaibi: Among the several unique tourist sites, especially in the desert, is Al Jiza, which is located in the Niyabat of Sinaw in the wilayat of Al Mudhaibi in North Al Sharqiyah Governorate.

It is an area populated with Bedouins and is famous for its high soft sand and covered with Ghaf trees to form a natural forest, with Bedouin homes that are made of palm fronds.

Al Jiza attracts visitors, especially during the afternoon when the sun is at its spectacular best.

The life of Bedouins here is different from those found in the cities, as Al Jiza is an area of stability for the sons of the desert while the cities are not inhabited by Bedouins until summer.

Al Jiza is an important area of settlement for the Bedouins, and there are dozens of houses here.

The inhabitants still maintain their inherent ancestral customs and traditions.

Among the most important Bedouin customs that still exist here are the meetings at public councils (Majlis) at various events to discuss issues affecting them.

Bedouins here take care of animal breeding and pay great attention to their animals due to the geographical nature of the region. It has helped cattle farming, along with the practice of many traditional industries and crafts like spinning and weaving.

Bedouin life in Al Jiza has not changed much despite the passage of time and the availability of services to cities in the present time. The Bedouin housing here has its known values and descriptions.

The Bedouin women look after the interests of the family and children, as well as taking care of the sheep. In the past, they were involved in spinning and weaving, which is still practiced by some. As for cooking, it was done with the use of wood and traditional methods. Today, Bedouin women use modern methods in cooking although traditional methods - as seen by many – make for tastier food.

Al Jiza's weather during the summer is fresh and mild and there are numerous places where tourists can spend the day in the shade of the trees, especially during the evenings when a mild and sometimes cold breeze blows through. The Bedouins take good care of the soft sand dunes because these are frequented by tourists for the numerous trees on top of these dunes. There are also a lot of birds in the region, such as Sand Grouse that flock together in the valleys like Wadi Andam, which runs West past Al Jiza and connects with Wadi Halfin in the south.

The citizens here also practice camel and sheep breeding. There are 800 camels in Al Jiza and the many estates for breeding racing camels usually participate in camel races in various governorates of the Sultanate. There are also designated areas for the races.

There are development projects in Al Jiza, including a school of general education with a large number of Bedouins studying there, and 55 km of paved road. There are 97 housing units in Al Jiza and a health centre.

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