Just outside Al Bustan Palace Hotel, opposite the imposing parliament buildings, a small roundabout is home to Sohar, a boat named after the hometown of the famous Omani seafarer Ahmed Bin Majid. The boat is a replica of one sailed by Abdullah Bin Gasm in the mid-8th century to Guangzhou, China. It was built in the dhow yards of Sur from the bark of more than 75,000 palm trees and four tonnes of rope. Not a single nail was used in the construction.
Tim Severin and a crew of Omani sailors undertook a famous voyage to Guangzhou in this boat in 1980 – a journey of 6000 nautical miles that took eight months to complete.