Misfat Al Abriyeen
If you are keen to enjoy a unique mountainous village in Oman, Misfat al Abriyeen would be a suitable choice to keep on your bucket list. This beautiful, almost 500-year-old village created by the nomadic tribe has attracted many tourists in recent years with its several amazing features and entertainment opportunities. Some people even call it the “most beautiful village of Oman” for its attractions. Many people come here to enjoy their relaxing leisure time in an overnight stay.
In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about Misfah Oman and why you should visit this place.
Misfat al abriyeen location
How to go there: (google map)
Located 1000 meters above sea level in the Jebel Sham Mountain range, Misfat al Abriyeen is 204 kilometers away from Muscat. Muscat to Misfat al Abriyeen will take around 2 hours and 15 minutes to reach. You can easily reach here following Muscat-Al Dakhiliyah highway. It is very near to Nizwa city and also from Al Hamra, a well-known village. From Nizwa, it’s only 40 minutes long drive. From Al Hamra, the distance is only 6 kilometers through a zigzagged uphill road that ends to the village entrance. You can take either of the ways- crossing the path to Al Hamra through Bahla or following the side road via Tanuf just before the Nizwa exit point.
When You Should Visit
Travelers visit Misfat al Abriyeen all year round. However, the climate of Oman is relatively warm thus, avoiding the scorching summer days lasting from June to August is the wise decision. Between October to April, the temperature is moderate and suitable to visit a place like this. Though due to the presence of numerous trees, the temperature here is not that extreme.
This place is quite busy on weekends. Avoiding weekends is, therefore, better to enjoy the serenity. You can start your journey early in the morning to get the whole day for exploring. Many people also stay to get the feeling of spending a night in an Omani village. Bring warm clothes if you visit in the winter since this place is at a high elevation.
Main Attraction of Misfat Village
Misfat al abriyeen village is full of mind-blowing alleys, old houses on solid rocks, and agricultural terraces. There is a viewing platform inside near the entrance containing maps with information and tips. You will get to see a clear wide view of the village from here. Here, we will tell you some of the key attractions of the village.
Beautiful Mud Houses
Misfah Oman is notable for its traditional houses that embody the original Omani culture. These are unique architectures made on a large rock foundation. The upper portion also contains small stones and rocks excavated from the mountains. They are kept together with mud and plaster finishing. Almost all buildings blend with the next one telling the theme of a unified mountainside village.
Some of them are decaying still stands with pride. It tells how strong the building materials are. Some houses contain air conditioning and satellite dishes. Even then, these houses are traditional and they keep the village unique from the rest of Oman.
The doorways and gates of the houses here come with various designs and multiple colors. These doors are the main reason you could differentiate between the blended houses from one another. Each house has its unique design and color that the implementation in all of their gates. These stunning door designs will blow your mind away for sure.
Misfat al abriyeen Old House
Misfat Old House is the main guest house of the village. It hosted Prince Charles in 2016 during his visit. You can expect a comfortable stay here while enjoying the calmness and tranquility of the place. It is at the heart of the village. You can easily roam around from here. Besides they offer local cuisines and accommodation facilities.
It has gone through renovations to make it more tourist-friendly and luxurious. There is enough space inside each room. There are green trees around and they are visible as soon as you open the window. You can enjoy the sunset from the rooftop. They include breakfast and dinner with a package full of traditional recipes with local ingredients.
The present owner inherited it from the family. It is the third generation that is running it now. This place is always full of guests being the most popular accommodation spot and needs previous reservation. You can invite the owners to dinner and listen to local legends of the valleys to make memorable nighttime.
Hissen Al Misfah or the Castle of Misfah
This beautiful inn offers a great environment to stay in the village. The rooms are cave-shaped. With a mattress on the floor, they make the original Omani flavor. The owner of it, Abdullah, is a friendly and welcoming personality. All the staff here can speak English and room service is available 24/7.
This place has also gone through renovation and now has become a super cozy place for staying. It has a separate restaurant, lounge, guest rooms with a seating area. The rooms offer an air-conditioning facility with a patio attached to some of them. From the balconies, you can see the beautiful green garden of Misfat al Abriyeen.
Besides all these, the chief attraction of Hissen Al Misfah is its stunning rooftop view enables you to see the whole place precisely. They use it as a restaurant and serve breakfast and dinner here. Having breakfast with the amazing view in the morning will be an experience to remember for life.
The Doorless Tower
This doorless stone tower is another key attraction of Misfat al Abriyeen. It is almost 3 kilometers from the Misfah Old House. Reaching here will need some off-road hiking adventure since it is further away from the regular hiking trail.
You will hardly find any established route to go there thus, make your way alone. However, come back before evening since they don’t allow visitors after evening prayer. There are some tales that this tower is home to many jinns. Also, they don’t like any disturbance.
This partly ruined tower is the highest point of the place contains two Omani flags placed oppositely. Previously there was a stone stair leading to the top but it is no more. Now it is impossible to reach the top without climbing gear. However, this historical structure will still give enough pleasure even if you can’t reach the top.
Al Hoota Cave
Though this is not inside Misfat al Abriyeen, you must see it as it is very nearby. This 5-meter-long cave is in Al-Hamra and is nearly 2 million years old! Archeologists discovered it a few hundred years ago but the government opened it for tourists in 2006. Now, only 500 meters are open to visitors. Yet it is the only open cave for people in the whole Arabian Peninsula.
One of the significant features of Misfat al Abriyeen is its vivid greenery sceneries. There are tall date palms, other fruits, and vegetables everywhere. Traditional Omani irrigation process Aflaj keeps the cultivation alive. You will see freshwater from nearby mountain springs flowing through channels made of concrete and stone.
Things to Do
Exploring Grassy Gardens and Aflaj
You can have a beautiful walk by following this channel. Going down following it will show you stunning green plantations. It meets a reservoir in the middle of the village for distributing water separately. You will see local boys are jumping and splashing with childish noises.
Getting Around the Village
The whole village is open for tourists except for women’s well-marked bathing areas. Since it’s a small village, finding your way around is a lot easier. Several paths are there to reach further up the mountain. The valleys to the west are comparatively complex and rugged than the Eastern valleys. You will also find a trail map at the visitor’s center to get a clear overview.
You can follow the staircase walks and path to the wadi. The trail in the wadi continues further deep. It ends with an oasis and a few pools. This hike will give you some incredible mountain views that you will never forget like Bandar Al Khairan. Weekdays here are quieter and you will feel traveling through time while trekking around alone.
Few Local Customs You Should Know
Though this place has become a well-known tourist spot in recent years, the inhabitants are typical conservative Omani families. Here are a few customs you should know and follow:
- They are practicing Muslims and thus try to dress modestly and wear unrevealing clothes covering arms and knees.
- Do not enter into any private property without the settler’s permission and pick fruits.
- Behave well with the locals while trekking and roaming around the village.
- Take permission before capturing a picture of the locals.
- Do not pollute the surface water or falaj by bathing or other ways. Water is valuable here.
- This village has several identities known as Misfat Al Abriyeen, Misfat al Abriyeen, Misfah Oman, Misfah al Abriyeen. All of them indicate the same place. The name came from the first inhabitant Al Abri Family.
- The road from Al Hamra to the village entrance is a bit steep. However, taking a 4WD is not mandatory. You can go there in any usual car too. The parking spot is at the top of the village and small. Park your car without blocking space for others.
- The village is open all the time. However, it is a small place and thus books accommodation in advance for an overnight stay.
- Toilets are at the top of the village. You will find a few coffee shops here and there for the tourists.
Misfat al Abriyeen is a place worth visiting and will give you a different flavor. Especially, if you want to experience the life of Omani countryside, this is the perfect heaven to pay a visit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most common questions people ask about Misfat al Abriyeen:
Can I Roam Around the Village by Cars?
Sadly, the village is not accessible by car due to the extremely narrow lanes. However, using your feet will give the best experience in this pedestrian-friendly land.
How Can I Identify the Hiking Trails?
Authority marked the walking trails with small yellow, green and red flags of yellow, green, and red flags. You can detect every trail with the help of them.
Is There Any Fee for Visiting Misfat Al Abriyeen?
No, Misfah village is free of cost.