Old Ibra as the locals call it is a place where time travel is possible. The village of Minzfah has the appearance of a village that has been abandoned after a great storm. Palm tree leaves cover the paths and roads while dust and dirt give way to small green gardens owned by some of the few Bedouin people that still live here. The locals are super shy but friendly and the colorful doors hint at a time past that saw this place to be lively. There are numerous stories about how this place used to be the epicentre of fighting when fighting occured in the 60s between tribes that lived in the area. Apparently Sufalah (village where I lived) and Alayah (I later moved there) ( 10 km apart) used to be at war. I only heard random stories about this because nobody really wants to talk about it. It is a shame because this whole village oozes history and is a true highlight of the Sharqiya region.
Ibra is a very small conservative town and some would even say it is a village of 10,000 people. One of my favorite things to do is to sit around with the locals and get to know them (obviously easier if you are a man) but there are several places or cafes to sit down and watch the world go by and experience what a real small town in the Middle East looks and feels like. The locals will try their best to speak English to you because they love to practice so the language wont be a huge barrier like in Yemen etc. I highly recommend sitting outdoors at a cafe but please note that women dont do this (male dominated) and you will be stared at because of how rare travellers are in the town but travellers are accepted. Ask the owners if they have any problems and if they say no they take advantage of the situation and enjoy. You will have a great time ;)
- Budget Travel