By: Saleh Abdullah Alkhamyasi
its own magic for Omani citizens, residents and tourists alike. It seems
that everyone is so absorbed with its mystique touch. Its souq with its
traditional identity is a point of attraction . It illustrates a living
example of coexistence between its diverse group of visitors. While, there
are differences in gender, ethnic, educational and linguistic background,
the human nature play a common denominator to bridge the gap and eliminate
all the communication barriers. An innocent smile can break the ice and lead
to a spontaneous assurance and a welcoming feeling. Although there are
numerous aspects to explore and unveil the magic of this historical city,
today we will focus on its corniche.
corniche is undoubtedly has its own magnetic power. It is a central point
that attracts people from all walks of life. You see them scattered in
flock all over the corniche but
each one came for his own purpose.
corniche side, which stretches from the fish roundabout winding towards
the capital Muscat as if it is a huge serpent, your eyes can spot people
who hail from different countries each one came to appreciate the
breathtaking beauty of the corniche. Life on the corniche does not seem to
fade . People stretch the hours. Their presence is a continuous process
from dawn to dusk.
At the shore
of Mattrah, life starts right from the dawn prayer and the wheel keep
turning and does not seem to abate until pass midnight. From early
morning you see people walking, jogging and running across the corniche.
Each one is appreciating nature in his own way.
Like an early
bird, all of them came to catch the warm. Some people start their day
exercising on the corniche. While, some will be totally absorbed with their
Yoga gestures, others prefer to jog or walk with love ones or friends.
sit in the benches along the side of the sea and go in a deep meditation
or you see them wandering around . In their faces you see thousand
questions and question about the
maritime history of the place and its people. On the other hand, some enjoy
watching the ships as they are entering or passing by the Sultan Qaboos
port from different parts of the world. Others enjoy looking at the small
fish moving around in the sea or observe how they conduct their life deep
down in the sea. Some cannot help but point their camera lenses trying to
make a breakthrough with their highly attractive photos of the surrounding.
proceed along the corniche, you see another group of people practicing their
fishing hobby on one corner . They throw their fishing lines towards the
fish and wait for it to swallow their hook so they can eagerly drag it out
to see what they have caught. Others are taken aback with the scene of the
birds flying around filling their surrounding with joy and laughter. They
freely fly around in circles exhibiting their agility and freedom in the sky
of Mattrah. It is so attractive to see the birds flying and land to pick
whatever food, their eye can spot. In fact there are people who made it a
habit to visit the corniche to feed these birds. A long the years they
develop an affinity with these birds. They throw bread towards the birds
directions. The moment the birds see the bread floating on the surface of
sea they rush toward it as if they are in a fierce competition snatch their
portion and fly back. It is a survival for the fittest. Watching the birds
rejoicing the day is by itself uplifting and has its own joyful feeling .
As you delve
towards the fish roundabout, the road leads you towards the Mattrah fish
market where, people from various places comes to sell and buy fish. At the
fish market you can see both
whole sale as well as retail activities. Fish of different types and sizes
are organized in heaps. Sellers are sitting in separate stands. The
bargaining between the two sides of the formula make the place alive. Around
the place you hear different dialects and languages communicated across. The
moment the fish buying deal is over, the fish processing man will be beside
you offering his services and asking you which way you would like your fish
to be processed. He will take the fish from you and direct you to follow him
in his chamber.
Life on the
corniche takes a different shape in the evening. The waves orchestrate a
symphony on the shore. People enjoy seeing the wave dancing as if it is in
a marriage procession. The cool
breeze mesmerizes the soul and elevate the spirit. Its soothing effect
washes the stress of the day. People are surrounding the place from both
sides. Tourists are enjoying the atmosphere. They walk around the place.
They are so attracted to the traditional souvenirs. After they are through
with their shopping you see them dine in one of the restaurants beside the
The lights on
the traditional houses, Mosque, fort and the hotels facing the Corniche
bring about a very nice and beautiful scenery. The reflection of the moon on
the sea is so sensational and breathtaking.
With such an
atmosphere people are filling the place with life. They are walking,
talking, eating and moving around socializing and kicking the stress of the
day. Such reflections on the Mattrah corniche is nothing but a glimpse of
our hospitable, peaceful and magnificently beautiful Oman. It is an
illustration of a life style in a peaceful and breathtaking atmosphere that
has attracted writers, artists and photographers to narrate their part of
story in their own way.