Dhofar, located at the southern part of Oman, prides itself as the home of the world’s best quality frankincense resin known as the Royal Hojari. This is due to the fact that Dhofar’s perfectly situated geographic location produces quite unique weather. The primary factor that determines the quality of resin is the location of the frankincense trees. The coastal areas in Dhofar receive too much rain in the months of July and August which affect the quality of resin, as well as the increasing humidity and impurities.

The blessed Dhofar region

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CREDITS

In this perspective the scale is a bit skewed due to the roundness of the Earth’s surface.

Source and quality

Plateau

Fresh frankincense produced by the trees far from coastal areas look greenish but turn yellowish when they get older. Resin produced by the trees near the coastal area are light brown when fresh and darker brown when older.

Best

Good

Dhofar cross section

Good Quality

Best Quality

This zone receives occasional rains so the resins obtained from the trees are not damaged by the rains but such dryness would almost kill the trees as their roots couldn’t receive the needed nutrients.

The famous Hojari frankincense is produced in a zone which goes 25 kms inland from Jabal Samhan ridge.

Hojari

Coastal plain

Single-stemmed tree up to 6m tall in areas with good water supply

Coastal plain

The older the frankincense, the darker its colour

Fresh

With impurities but still good

With impurities

Old

Inferior Quality

Too much impurities in frankincense resins are due to rain.

From this point and the density of Boswellia sacra starts to decrease towards the inland

Elevation

(metres)

25

57

23

28

0

0

Elevation

(metres)

Distance (kilometres)

Winds and rain

Fog

Desert

North-facing

cliffs

Escarpment

Dry

Plateau

Foothills

Coastal

plain

Sea

1,500

1,500

1,000

880

500

0

0

Size and shape of the tree

Plateau

Plateau & Desert

Multi-stemmed trees and shorter than the ones in the coastal plain

Desert. Trees under extremely dry condition: Up to 1 metre

The ridge of Dhofari mountain chain divides Dhofar into two main domains: the coastal plain which annually receives monsoon rains (or khareef), and the plateau, a drier tract which produces the best frankincense.

Look the Cross section over the map

Production areas and quality

Different kinds of Frankincense

HOJARI

NAJDI

HASKI

SHAZRI

SHAIBI

SHALI

SHEQUOF

Plant species have certain range and characteristic. They are greatly dependent on the climate, the availability of water, quality of sunlight, temperature and soil. Thus, the Boswellia sacra in Oman may vary in many ways.

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Wahiba Sands

Duqm

Marmul

Ancient frankincense

collection point

Unesco site

Ridge

Andur

Cross section

Sadah

Hasik

Al Hallaniyah

Khor Rori

Al Baleed

Port of

Salalah

(Raysut)

Ayun

Jabal

Al Qara

Jabal

Al Qara

Jabal

Rakhyut

SALALAH

Wadi Dawkah

(Frankincense Reserve)

Desert