A Rare Rock Garden
The Sultanate of Oman is highly regarded as one of the most valuable resources in the Middle East, when it comes to geology, heritage and archaeology. Duqm
is no exception. In 2009, a remarkable discovery was made during an exploratory mission conducted by the Earth Secrets Company (ESC), in cooperation with the World Environments Association. The site is now internationally acknowledged as one of the world’s rare natural rock gardens. Collaboration efforts are being made between the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Heritage and Culture to ensure the future of this incredible site as one of Oman’s most prized attractions.
Excavation and Scientific Discovery
Spanning across 3km², the site is like something from another planet and its desert setting confirms this. The rock garden comprises of many limestone and sandstone structures, thought to have formed an underground freshwater aquifer, as long as 46 million years ago. Over time, the structures have been shaped by the elements of nature, such as the weather. Discoveries of flint stone and spearheads from past civilisations were also excavated on the site. Little is known about the site in terms of archaeology, but there is interest to find out more and opportunity for further scientific studies into this. Duqm Rock Garden is listed as one of the top 25 sites of geological scientific importance in the whole Sultanate of Oman.
When you enter the rock garden it is like taking a step back in time. Looking at these remarkable ancient formations it is easy to imagine how our predecessors lived of such landscapes. The rocks come in all shapes and sizes and if you look hard enough you never know what you might see: smiling faces, turtles, or something completely different. In order to protect the ancient past of Duqm for the future, the garden has become a source of attraction for tourists, researchers and specialists in this field because of its unique and distinctive rock formations.
Pre-historic sites of this level, such as the Rock Garden, are rarely seen on the planet. Make sure when you are staying at the Park Inn by Radisson Hotel & Residence Duqm
that you take time to explore the rock garden. It is a must for anyone interested in geology or archaeology.