Bilad Sayt: A fairy tale village

Bilad Sayt is a fairy tale village typical of the Arabian settlements of the past. Truth be told, it is one of the most picturesque villages in Oman. The mere view of the village is enough to leave you awestruck for a few minutes.

The layered silhouette of the rugged mountain range and the adventures through the steep passes are always a dream for off-roaders. The journey takes you through a wild landscape of dramatic canyons, deep gorges filled with natural spring water and rocky valleys. The part of the track after Az Zammah village in Wadi Bani Awf should be covered with extra care as it is has steep climbs and descents, sharp curves and deep valleys on one side.

“Widely regarded as one of the most beautiful mountain villages in the Sultanate, Bilad Sayt is nestled within the Hajar Mountains and reachable only by 4WD vehicles from Al Hamra or Wadi Bani Awf,” says Oman’s Ministry of Tourism. “Villagers still practice traditional terrace farming that has served the community for centuries.”

“You discover the true essence of Arabia — so mystic, so unimaginable and so magical — when your four-wheel drive leaves the bustling cities, heading towards interiors of the arid desert region,” added the Ministry. “Drive to the mountains and villages on weekends and discover the true Arabia.”

Travellers are, however, required to check weather conditions before they leave and are requested to not attempt the journey during or after the rains. The road is quite steep, with 45 degree climbs at some points, and a drop of more than a thousand feet throughout. The narrow road, which is barely enough at some points for two cars to pass by, needs some experience of driving through mountainous roads.