If you are tourist or resident of Muscat, is very likely that you have already visited Matrah Souq for few times. A very popular place among Omanis and tourists, the Souq offers lots of opportunities for any photographer or traveler in Muscat and Oman.
Streets – the Gems of Mutrah Souq
I always enjoyed to visit this place because it is full of history. You can still hear the sea waves crashing and splashing, sharing the feelings of the old-time merchant sailors. This is a place of Arabic essence which is not yet spoiled by modernity. Adventure deep into the Souq and walk to discover some great street photography options. The Souq’s streets are narrow and alternate shadows with lights giving you the freedom to play with flashes and mistery.
The Gold Souq
Take your chance and feel free to adventure in the Gold Souq to discover the shining galleries. If you arrive at good timing (usually evening, but before 9 PM), most of the shops will be open and you will have a real show of gold.
Note that this is usually a busy place and will be difficult to install a tripod on the narrow streets, so you will probably have to push a little the ISO values and shoot hand-held.
Discover the shops
The Souq is also a nice place to talk to people, discover their stories and take pictures for them and their shops. But in this order. Try to act friendly and show interest in their stuff and I promise that they will repay you with same attitude. Some merchants have really colorful shops, and that makes for pretty awesome backgrounds. You can also try the black-and-white backgrounds of the shops selling henna tattoo models.
I am sure there is much more left to explore and for me taking photos in Matrah will always be a pleasant and refreshing experience. You can always complete your journey there with some food and fresh juice in one of the really nice coffee shops or go for a relaxing walk in Ryiam Park. You can also explore the Old Muscat, which is just few kilometers away, but about that place will talk in a different post.