Welcome to Qurayat
Famous for exporting horses that were reared on the surrounding desert plains, the attractive coastal town of Qurayat was once an important port, although it's difficult to imagine from the sleepy corniche today. Sacked by the Portuguese in the 16th century (and more recently devastated by tropical cyclone Gonu in 2007), the town has never regained its status. Despite sinking into relative oblivion, Qurayat still has one claim to fame: its basket-making. The porous baskets, made from the local mangrove that grows in abundance in the town's large khor (inlet), are used for keeping bait fresh aboard the small fishing boats that pack the harbour. Presided over by a 19th-century watchtower, the boats make an attractive sight moored along the corniche. There are other points of interest dotted around the area, including a castle in the centre of town, a landscaped park with water features and a beautiful stretch of sandy beach.