Al Baleed Archaeological Park

Al Baleed, located in Salalah, Oman, is a large walled ancient and medieval port city on the Indian Ocean from which frankincense, Arabian horses and other desert products were shipped out across the ancient world. Inhabited from the 6th through the 17th centuries AD, the site is impressive for its clear city plan with high building mounds, defensive city walls and towers, and stunning beachside location.

In 2016 we mapped Al Baleed with a custom built drone. This is a 3D interactive model of Al Baleed constructed from the drone photos.

Interactive map of Al Baleed Archaeological Park

The large imposing mound at Al Baleed is the citadel/husn and was the target of excavations between 1997‐2007. Now slightly higher than 13 m., visible from the southern side are the semi‐attached corner bastions and the southern gate in the center. The towers and gate belong to the latest phase of the city (1500 AD). The latter has a bent‐axis configuration leading internally to a very large staircase. Internal excavations revealed a central courtyard surrounded by suites of rooms. Probably originally over four stories high, the building represents the home and ruling center of the Sultan. Clearly visible on the southern side, are massive blocks of the earliest city, ca. 950 AD. An earlier Iron Age settlement lies under the husn.