Al A’fiya in Samail: Destination for mountain lovers
Samail - Al A’fiya, one of the villages in Wadi Bani Rawaha in the wilayat of Samail, the Governorate of Dakhliyah, is located under a footpath surrounded by mountains from all sides, making it an ideal destination for nature and mountain-climbing lovers.
The village is located in the south-west of the wilayat of Samail, about 25km away from its centre. It was formerly known as Al Hama, a name derived from the familiarity with bullets at that time.
The village’s name was changed into Al A’fiya for its beautiful nature that qualified it to be the first stop for tourists in the wilayat, especially expatriates. About 400 citizens live in the village.
One of the most important tourist attractions in the village is Wadi al A’ssi. It is a flowing wadi in Wadi Bani Rawaha. It forms a beautiful sight in Al Mesqah valley as water overflows during rainfall on the mountains surrounding the village.
The flooding of the valley attracts many tourists to spend a day in the picturesque nature and among fruit trees overlooking the sides of the valley while the water bubbling from the top of the mountains forming beautiful falls.
The village is surrounded by an old wall, partially destroyed due to climatic factors. It connects three gates.
Inside it, there are a number of old houses called ‘Al Hujrah’, which were inhabited by the residents of the village, who num- bered no more than 30 citizens.
The houses were destroyed, but the damaged parts still exist. The village has a tall tower.
Yousef bin Sarhan al Hashami, a resident of the village, said, “Although the village of Al A’fiya is in a mountainous area, it is characterised by the cultivation of all kinds of date palms and citrus trees. It tops other villages of Wadi Bani Rawaha in the cultivation of lemon, bergamot orange and mango.
He said most of the villagers are engaged in a number of professions, such as raising cattle, beekeeping and harvesting thyme and wild berries from the peaks of the mountains surrounding the village. Such products are sold in the wilayat’s market and at neighbouring markets.
Al A’fiya village is linked by mountain roads, one of which leads to the village of Al Manakhar in the niyabat of Jebel Akhdar, about six-hour walk through a series of mountains.
It is also linked by a shortcut mountain road to the village of Hadash in Wadi Mistal, one of the villages in the wilayat of Nakhal. It can be reached in four hours on foot.