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Souqs - Traditional Markets

Traditional markets (or as the locals call them: souqs) have been a significant part of the revered cultural history of Oman. For many years, locals have flocked to these markets to trade their products in a community-like environment that celebrate traditions of the old Omani culture. You would spot folks auctioning their best livestock items, selling their freshest produce, and inviting passersby to try a taste of their traditional desserts. Here is a roundup of our favourite souqs in Oman.

A souq is an open-air marketplace. Historically, souqs were held outside of cities in the location where a caravan loaded with goods would stop and merchants would display their goods for sale. Souqs were held when there was a caravan or more available. At that time, souqs were more than just a market to buy and sell goods; they were also major festivals and many cultural and social activities took place.

Though each neighbourhood within the city would have a local Souq selling food and other essentials, the main souq was one of the central structures of a large city. A central marketplace, it was where textiles, jewellery, spices, wooden sculptures and other valuable goods as well as the money changers were arranged in a line.


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