The loop back from the ‘beehive tombs’ of Bat skidded by forts and more forts. By the time I saw similar forts in Bahrain a few days later I couldn’t muster the will to get out of the car and into the blazing heat.
Jabrin, UNESCO-listed Bahla and Nizwa were the heavy hitters on the route to Muscat. Bahla has been closed for over two decades for renovations, but is scheduled to reopen this year. The roads on this route are much faster than the Barka to Bat side route taken on the way out.
In retrospect, it was a long haul out to Bat and the forts were quite repetitive. A brief day jaunt out to Nizwa, Bahla and Jabrin is much faster and plenty of fort dose. Muscat and the coast to the south add more variety to an Oman vist (forts by water, at least) for those with more than one day.