The Al Batinah (North and South Governorates) is enclosed by the foothills of the Western Hajar Mountains to the west and the Gulf of Oman to the east. The Batinah Governorate is the most populated Governorate in Oman and perhaps its most prosperous. For centuries the Governorate has been the Sultanate’s maritime and commercial gateway to the Gulf and to the Indian Ocean.
Made up of 12 Wilayats, most of which cover the fertile plain and the coast, its most distinctive feature is the acres and acres of farmland with a wide variety of crops. The fertile land and the sea have helped support agriculture and fishing as the main occupations of the people of the area.
Sohar is the most important of the 12 Wilayats and definitely the most renowned of all its cities. For centuries, maritime trade was centered on the port of Sohar and for a while it was also the capital of the Sultanate.
From a tourist viewpoint, the towns of Rustaq and Nakhl with their forts, the Souq of Barka and the many wadis spread across the Wilayats promise much history and beauty.
With the highest population, the Batinah Governorate has a total population of 772,590 with about 14% being expatriates as per 2010 Census.