If you just like offroading, you should try this track. It is a long journey, taking you from few hundred meters altitude to almost 2000m in about 27 km. The road is quite in good condition, without tricky sections and great views are there, but you will admire most of them on the way back.

  • Village of Qiyut
  • View from the village
  • Brother trees
  • Blazing the dust
  • Easy downhill
  • Picture time
  • Sparse villages
  • Road to nowhere
  • Start in Ar Rawdah

 

Getting to the start

Follow the highway to Nizwa and exit at Birkat Al Mouz / Al Jabel Al Akhdar. Then follow the old road to Nizwa, but avoid the city and go straight towards Bahla. After Tanuf you will find a sign for Al Rawdah. Follow it and start climbing the dusty switchbacks visible from far away.

 

Track

The way to Qiyut climbs slowly from the main road, with moderate gradients. I am pretty sure that the current road is an improved version of an older and steeper one, but it is still fun and very safe. You will not find too many challenges on the way to the village and sometimes I was trying to understand what is the point to invest so many resources in a road going to mostly nowhere. Follow the main road and the instructions provided as GPX files and keep going for around 27 km before reaching the village of Qiyut. You can even speed up a little, but the last few kilometers represent quite a steep downhill and you should think of using low gear here for safety reasons and brake pads savings. The way to the village and the village itself are somehow average, but the return journey is not. This part of the road will be more thrilling and exciting. You will enjoy a lot of nice views as the road waves back to the main road and there are lots of places for nice pictures.

 

Landmarks

It was not clear to me if Qiyut is still an active village or not, since we spent some time there and we couldn't see any faces around. The end of the road in the center of the village allows for some nice views over the Sayq Plateau, while the way back will present some marvelous scenes with nice switchbacks and few sparse villages. Also, take your time and enjoy the weather, especially if doing this during summer.

 

Ratings

Driving: 4/5

Landmarks: 2/5

Pictures: 4/5

Overall: It is a good option for a nice diversion for a summer day, when temperatures in Muscat and lower villages will not be so enjoyable.

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