The recently opened highway between Sohar and Yanqul offers perhaps the easiest way of getting between the coast and the mountains. It’s 110km from Sohar to Yanqul, a drive of around 75 minutes along a fast and scenic highway, with hardly any traffic. The road to Yanqul runs off the Globe roundabout in Sohar (although it’s not signed to Yanqul, only to Wadi Habib). Note that there are no petrol stations between Sohar and Yanqul, while there are also a couple of wadis about 30km out of Sohar which are prone to flooding. The road is fairly tedious for the first 40km or so (excepting a sign to the jovial-sounding village of Beer Jam about 25km out of Sohar) but becomes increasingly dramatic as the mountains approach and the road begins to hairpin upwards, eventually breasting the crest of the ridge slightly over halfway to Yanqul, before descending into the village of Al Waqbah.

YANQUL itself is a remote and rather sleepy little place lying in the shadow of the huge triangular Jebel al Hawra and surrounded by eye-catching mountain formations – slender rock pinnacles, craggy ridgetops, table mountains – which make for enjoyable viewing during the drive from Sohar to Ibri. It’s worth stopping here to have a look at the town’s attractive mudbrick fort, the Bait al Marah (not open to the public), built at the beginning of seventeenth century by the Nabhani dynasty. The old village behind is also interesting, with dozens of crumbling mudbrick houses in an advanced state of decay, plus more modern concrete homes with colourful (though faded) metal doors. Most of the houses are now abandoned, although the falaj still flows in places. To reach the fort, turn right at the T-junction at the beginning of Yanqul (if approaching from Sohar) and turn right along the road to Dank. The fort is about 1km along this road, on the right.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Oman features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Life at the edge: wild camping in Oman

Life at the edge: wild camping in Oman

It's legal to wild camp in Oman. And, done responsibly, it's one of the most rewarding ways to take in the country's varied terrain. Fiona McAuslan pitched her …

17 May 2017 local_activity Special feature
Oman: a first-timer’s guide

Oman: a first-timer’s guide

Poised between the glitzy excess of the Emirates and the rigid conservatism of Saudi Arabia, Oman provides a winning introduction to the Middle East. Politica…

13 Dec 2016 • Andy Turner insert_drive_file Article
12 of the most beautiful places in the Middle East

12 of the most beautiful places in the Middle East

The Middle East is a paradox. Located at the cultural crossroads between east and west, the region nowadays tends to make headlines for all the wrong reasons, b…

16 Nov 2016 • Gavin Thomas insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

Mandatory - can not be deselected. Necessary cookies help make a website usable by enabling basic functions like page navigation and access to secure areas of the website. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.

PHPSESSID,aelia_cs_selected_currency,cookie_notice_accepted,RS,bp-message,bp-message-type,id,UIDR,w3tc_logged_out,__cfduid
__cfduid

Statistics

Statistic cookies help website owners to understand how visitors interact with websites by collecting and reporting information anonymously.

__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid,__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xt
__utma,__utmb,__utmc,__utmz,_ga,_gid
__atssc,__atuvc,__atuvs,di,dt,ssc,ssh,sshs,uid,uit,xtc

Marketing

Marketing cookies are used to track visitors across websites. The intention is to display ads that are relevant and engaging for the individual user and thereby more valuable for publishers and third party advertisers.

__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID,__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll,c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs
__gads,PISID, BEAT, CheckConnection TempCookie703, GALX, GAPS, GoogleAccountsLocale_session, HSID, LSID, LSOSID, NID, PREF, RMME, S, SAPISID, SID, SSID
__utmv, _twitter_sess, auth_token, auth_token_session, external_referer, guest_id, k, lang, original_referer, remember_checked, secure_session, twid, twll
c_user, datr, fr, highContrast, locale, lu, reg_ext_ref, reg_fb_gate, reg_fb_ref, s, wd, xs