Frankincense is one of the oldest and most famous products of Oman. The southern region of Oman, Dhofar, was known throughout history as the 'Land of Frankincense.' The value of frankincense derives from its use in religious, medical and incantation rituals. Evidence gives proof of the frankincense trade since the Bronze Age, whilst the Iron Age period was considered the pinnacle of trade. This led to the emergence of regular land and sea trade routes. Frankincense formed a bridge of communication between the East and West. Many sites in Dhofar were linked to this trade; Al-Baleed, Khor Rori/Sumhuram, Wadi Dawkah (Natural Park of Frankincense Trees), Wubar. These sites had such worldwide importance that UNESCO listed them in 2000 as World Heritage sites.
Ali Alkathiri graduated from Sultan Qaboos University in 2003 from the College of Arts and Social Sciences with a Bachelor of Arts in Archaeology & Tourism. Since 2004 he has been working for the Office of the Adviser to His Majesty the Sultan for Cultural Affairs, Diwan of the Royal Court. He previously worked as an archaeologist and administrator of Cultural Relations but since 2010 he has been the Director of The Museum of the Frankincense Land, Al-Balled Archaeological Park, Salalah, Sultanate of Oman.