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Ain Al Kasfa – Al Rustaq

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said to have therapeutic qualities

Located at the heart of Al Rustaq, Ain Al Kasfa is a hot spring said to have therapeutic qualities. Purpose-built bathing rooms are available close by for visitors to use, as swimming in the spring itself is not allowed.

Al Rustaq is famous for two impressive and historically important landmarks: Al Hazm Castle (حصن الحزم) and the imposing Al Rustaq Fort (قـلعة الرستاق).

Al Hazm Castle is at the outskirts of Al Rustaq and is one of the most famous castles in the Sultanate. The castle was built by Imam Sultan bin Saif II in the early 18th century, who is buried in this castle along with his son.  Al Hazm Castle features a massive beautiful wooden door with intricate writing and it is unique among other Omani castles for having its roof held by columns instead of the traditional wooden roof supports. The massive Al Rustaq Fort, a much older fort dating back to the 13th century, is near the city market and be can be seen from the surrounding hills. The fort is cradled by four tall towers, the tallest being more than 18 meters tall. The fort also has its own falaj water system within it.

Both Al Rustaq Fort and Al Hazm Castle are included in the Tentative List to be nominated for the UNESCO World Heritage List. Unfortunately, they were both also closed for renovations during our visit (with typically no foreseen re-opening dates!), but if you climb up the mountain overlooking Rustaq you can see amazing views of the city and Al Rustaq Fort as it is clearly the most dominant feature of the landscape.