Rustaq Fort

Top choice in Oman

Two cannons mark the interior courtyard of this enormous fort – the entrance alone signals its former importance. Built on top of pre-Islamic foundations, the massive outer walls date from the 18th century while the inner keep is of much earlier vintage. The fort has been carefully restored and is an impressive sight looming above the town, with the mountains as backdrop. The interior is a fort-lover's dream, with hidden passages, vertical stairways and massive ramparts.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Oman attractions

1. Qasra Museum

0.39 MILES

Tucked into the unlit and crumbling old quarter of Rustaq, behind the fort, this unique museum is the personal project of the owner, Zakia Al Lamki. Left…

2. Ain Al Kasfah

0.95 MILES

These hot springs attract visitors who believe the water issuing from under the ground at Al Kasfah has therapeutic properties. As a result, the…

3. Rustaq Gateway

2.03 MILES

Befitting a town of its size, Rustaq has a fine gateway similar to those in Nizwa, Bahla and Sumail. Wedged between a cut in the mountains, this landmark…

4. Wadi Bani Awf

6.32 MILES

This spectacular wadi is a major artery through the mountains and often flows year-round with spring water. It looks particularly gorgeous when mountain…

5. Wadi Sahten

8.52 MILES

The exciting route through Wadi Sahten begins near Rustaq and winds through a narrow corridor that is often flowing with water. A paved road opens out…

6. Thorn Tree Copse

8.86 MILES

Where the paved road through Wadi Bani Awf ends, a magnificent stand of trees comes into view. These are Ziziphus spina christi, or 'Christ thorn trees' –…

7. Al Awabi Castle

9.17 MILES

Functioning less as a sight in its own right, picturesque though it may be, this fort as an excellent landmark for the slightly obscure entrance into Wadi…

8. Petroglyphs

9.47 MILES

At the first bend in the road that leads through Wadi Bani Kharus from the village of Al Awabi, there's a great slab of smooth pale-grey rock on the…