Image by Bjoern Lauen Getty Images
Well-labelled and atmospherically lit at night, the ancient ruins of Al Baleed belong to the 12th-century trading port of Zafar. Frankincense was shipped across the sea to India from here in exchange for spices. Little is known about the port’s demise but the excellent on-site museum charts the area’s settlement since 2000 BC and illustrates the maritime strength of the nation including its recent renaissance. The site includes several kilometres of landscaped paths and the adjoining reed beds make for good birdwatching.