Bait al Safah - al Hamra, Oman
I recently had the chance to visit the Sultinate of Oman, and spend a few hours at Bait al Safah (which is sometimes transliterated into English as Bait al Safa, Bayt al Safah, or Beit al Safah). Bait al Safah, which means "Safah's House" in Arabic, is a living museum of traditional Omani life in the town of al Hamra. The three story house is about 400 years old and is built using the mud/clay bricks that were the common building material at the time.
al Hamra is an interesting village about 2.5 hours from Muscat and 30 minutes from Nizwa, site of Oman's oft-visited fort. In addition to Bait al Safah, al Hamra is home to Misfat al Abriyyin village, an old village built on the hillside with an ingenious series of waterworks irrigating a set of terraced gardens.
The house is decorated with old furniture and decorations and in a room in the back of the house there are village people demonstrating the traditional ways to make oil from local nuts, roast and grind coffee, grind grains into flour, and bake the traditional rukhal bread. Everyone was very welcoming and we had a great time.
We had not originally planned to visit the town of museum, but when we told our guide we were looking to understand what life in Oman used to be like he suggested we come here. We are very glad he did as it turned out to the highlight of our trip.
The museum itself is located in a section of town filled with the old mud brick buildings, most of which are abandoned and decaying. The area itself is interesting to walk around to get a sense of what life was like in old Oman.
If you enjoy my photos, please feel free to browse this web site or my photos on flickr.
No comments posted.
Recent PostsSyrian Monastery - Wadi el Natrun, Egypt Bait al Safah - al Hamra, Oman Arlington National Cemetery Letchworth State Park Battle of the Flowers at Carnival in Nice, France Kuang Daing Market on Inle Lake, Burma Camden Town, London Photographers To Know: Frank Horvat Chefchaouen Morocco Prasat Bayon