All year round attraction
Wadi Bani Khalid in the Governorate of North Sharqiyah is a wilayat that has various attractions to offer for nature tourism, including tranquil water bodies, the Maqil Cave and village, Hawar Natural Park, Al Ouwaina Fort, the golden sands in Rumail and Qusaira Village and more. In 2018, 187,107 domestic and international tourists visited Wadi Bani Khalid.
The wilayat is known for its mild temperatures in summer and cool climes in winter. It is affected by the Al Khareef season in August. The wilayat is mountainous yet part of it has desert landscapes which contributes to a constant flow of tourists and tourism activities throughout the year.
According to Sheikh Salim bin Hamoud al Siyabi, the wilayat is so named after Bani Khalid who settled here, like in the cases of Wadi Bani Rawaha, Wadi al Jahour and Wadi Bani Ghafir.
The wilayat of Wadi Bani Khalid can be reached through a paved road connecting it to other governorates and wilayats. It is located about 220km away from the Governorate of Muscat via the eastern road and 300km by the Quriyat-Sur coastal road.
The wilayat has various natural tourist spots and the weather attracts international tourists and residents during all seasons, but the maximum numbers are received in winters and public holidays when visitors arrive from many places.
"The total number of tourists who visited the wilayat last year was 187, 107," said Talal bin Khalfan al Shuaibi, Director of Tourism Department in the Governorate of North Sharqiyah. “The wilayat of Wadi Bani Khalid is seeing a large number of tourists from within the sultanate and beyond. The number of visitors from the GCC and the Arab countries (4,991) constitutes 2.7 per cent of the total, while the number of Asian and African resident visitors (48,282) represents 25.8 per cent of the total. There were 77,074 visitors from European countries, which constitutes 41.2 per cent of the total number of visitors.”
According to Shuaibi, the total number of tourists in 2018 to the wilayat was 24.4 per cent compared to 2017, which was 182,648.
Shuaibi informed that a tourist facility is being built above the water bodies in Wadi Bani Khalid for tourists and residents wishing to spend time in nature. A rescue team will be stationed by the ponds for the safety of tourists, especially those who go swimming.
He praised the efforts of Royal Oman Police, Wadi Bani Khalid Municipality, tourist industry workers and citizens who receive visitors in the tourist village of Maqil.
Other tourist attractions in Wadi Bani Khalid include the waterfalls of Hawar in the village of Bidhaa, Ein al Sarouj in the village of Al Adifin, Al Adifin Fort and Al Ouwaina Mosque Fort. The wilayat is also known for the water bodies in Maqil cave and village, which are major tourist attractions all yea