Upon visiting the quiet city of Nizwa, surrounded by palm groves at the base of the Al Hajar mountains, it is hard to imagine that this tourist destination—now a particularly popular stop on Oman's domestic tourism scene—was once a major trade hub and even the capital of Oman in the 6th century. But because of its historic importance, the small town and the surrounding area are rich with historic (as well as some natural) wonders, from the Nizwa Fort and traditional Friday livestock market to the cliffside villages of the towering Jabal Akhdar Mountains. Nizwa is a good home base for exploring the sights of the Dakhliya region, including Jabal Akhdar and Jabal Shams, Al Hoota Cave, Misfat Al Abreen village, and the Bahla ruins.
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