Khasab Fort

Top choice fort in Khasab

With its command of the bay sadly diminished since Lulu Hypermarket was built on reclaimed land opposite, Khasab Fort nonetheless cuts quite a dash with its four stone turrets and fine crenellations. Built by the Portuguese in the 17th century around a much older circular tower, this well-preserved fort now houses one of the best little ethnographic museums in Oman. The central tower displays the peninsula's flora and fauna and a video highlighting the famous sea chants of local fishermen.

Allow an hour to do a visit justice and to explore the Bait Al Qufl, literally the ‘house of locks’, built by a master craftsman in the courtyard. Typical of the region, such houses were built with a floor well below ground level – one of several features keeping the house safe during the empty summer months when the occupants moved to the shore to fish and harvest dates. You can see remnants of these houses in Rawdah Bowl, a two-hour off-road drive through the mountains. Also on display is arish, a house built on stilts to allow for ventilation in the sweltering summer months.