Renaissance Day

Renaissance Day is a public holiday that is observed annually in Oman on July 23rd. It’s a holiday that traditionally celebrated Sultan Qaboos bin Said’s ascension to the throne on July 23, 1970. When he ascended the throne, his purpose for Oman was to create a new beginning or a renaissance for their culture, and he set out to accomplish that goal. When Haitham bin Tariq assumed office on January 11, 2020, he essentially canceled this day when he released a list of public holidays, and Renaissance Day wasn’t on the list.

The Reign of Sultan Qaboos bin Said

When Qaboos took power after the 1970 Omani coup d’état, Oman was a poorly developed country and didn’t have much of an infrastructure. The country was lacking in healthcare, education, and even public roads—with the country having a maximum of 6 miles of roads in total for an area of 119,000 square miles. He decided to change this by declaring the date of his ascension, July 23rd, as Renaissance Day. He then began a campaign to improve infrastructure in the country.

Facts About Oman You Might Not Know

As we did our due diligence and researched this holiday, we came across some interesting facts about Oman that we feel our readers will truly appreciate. The following facts might not be apparent to someone who isn’t familiar with this country.

Oman Is One of the Oldest Human-Inhabited Countries

Anthropologists estimate that the area we now know as Oman has been inhabited by humans for over 105,000 years. That makes it one of the oldest inhabited countries in the world.

It Had the Longest Serving Ruler in the Middle East

Sultan Qaboos bin Said was a sultan from 1970 through 2020. That made him the longest-serving ruler in the Middle East.

The First University in Oman Was Sultan Qaboos University

The first university in Oman was established in 1986 and was named Sultan Qaboos University. It’s located in Al Khoud in the Capital Governorate of Muscat. Acceptance into this university requires high school students to have had high test scores.

There Are Four UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Oman

The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization has declared four World Heritage Sites in Oman. World Heritage Sites are sites that have great historical or cultural significance. The four UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Oman include Bahla Fort, the ancient city of Qalhat, the Aflaj Irrigation Systems of Oman, and the Land of Frankincense.

Observing Renaissance Day

While it was observed in Oman, people celebrated this holiday by listening to political speeches or attending special events. It was a public holiday on which people could reflect on the change that Oman made from a rural country with poor infrastructure to a modern wealthy state.

Where is it celebrated?
Oman (Public holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
July 23 Tuesday
Next year (2025)
July 23 Wednesday
Last year (2023)
July 23 Sunday