This puzzle is part 20 of Gladys' journey across the globe. Each part can be solved independently. Nevertheless, if you are new to the series, feel free to start at the beginning: Introducing Gladys.

Dear Puzzling,

My passport keeps filling up with new stamps. Hopefully I have enough pages left to finish the trip. Today I visited a museum detailing the history of an industry which has been especially important in this part of the world. I hope to write to you again soon.

The word borders in the crossword form a maze. Remember, every square is reachable from the start!

Wish you were here!
Love, Gladys.

enter image description here

Across (unordered)
1. Unit surrounded by falsehood – first signs of trouble (5)
2. Ancient France's global borders holding precious metal (4)
3. Anxiety as Swiss physics lab is associated with scam (7)
4. Woman is initially fearful before programme's ending (5)
5. Clothing for unruly Thai around Burmese capital (5)
6. Tenant's point of view in payment to landlord (8)
7. Behind the freaky boat, nothing is forbidden (5)
8. Breathe, former lover! Heal unexpectedly! (6)
9. Cops confused by the end, to some extent (5)
10. Clothing for unnoted hunting expedition (4)
11. Scottish king buried in walled garden (5)
12. Greasy ornamental mat has no front (4)
13. Man's postal delivery called out (4)
14. Scrape up cardroom's commission (4)
15. Polish back of heavy stone (4)

Down (unordered)
1. Leave, clutching unfinished plot to take advantage of (7)
2. Outlandish ransom off historically powerful Russians (9)
3. Country's central palace in the middle of puddle (6)
4. Determine the age of heartless Italian poet (4)
5. Intelligence operative is a well-mannered man (5)
6. Charitable donations essential to Palm Sunday (4)
7. Baku – abnormally large capital (5)
8. Perish by the end of strict regimen (4)
9. State to ban possessing one top hat (5)
10. Seashore to be a march's ending (5)
11. President's mother cooked corn (6)
12. Ohio's banks yearn for tea (6)
13. Landform or Arizona city (4)

Gladys will return in "A fortified nonogram".


3 Answers 3


The grid:

enter image description here

The location:

The solution to the maze is the highlighted cells in the above image, which spell OMAN OIL AND GAS EXHIBITION CENTRE.

Individual clue explanations:

I use standard(-ish) cryptic annotations here: the capital letters by themselves are the solution word, and the punctuation and lowercase letters tell how it is assembled.
1: LI(TR)E
2: G(AU)L
3: CON+CERN (reverse order?)
4: FE_ + _MME (multiple heads/tails?)
5: HA(B)IT*
7: TABO*+O
9: SCOP*+_E
10: SA(-fa)RI
11: _ED GAR_
12: (-d)OILY
13: MALE ("mail")
14: RAKE (double def)
15: RUB+_Y
1: EX(PLO(-t))IT
3: PO(_LA_)ND
4: DA(-n)TE
6: _ALMS_
7: KABU*+L
8: DIE+_T
9: B(I+H_)AR
10: BE + A + _CH (using "ending" for two letters again, and an extra "to"?)
11: MA+CRON*
12: O_O+LONG
13: MESA (double def)

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ All correct, nice job! Re: reverse order in 3a - I thought it was ok to change the order of the terms in formulations like "A <next to> B" as long as the indicator doesn't determine a specific order (before/after, over/under etc)? $\endgroup$
    – Jafe
    May 23, 2019 at 8:37
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @jafe I don't think I've ever seen it used in a clue before this -- I think general convention is that concatenation indicators are always left-to-right unless otherwise specified? But I could be wrong, and it could just be an uncommon thing. $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    May 23, 2019 at 16:47

Another partial answer:


  1. Gaul

  2. Concern

  3. Femme

  4. Habit

  5. Resident

  6. Taboo

  7. Exhale

  8. Oily


  1. Exploit

  2. Poland

  3. Date

  4. Agent

  5. Alms

  6. Kabul

  7. Diet

  8. Oolong

  9. Mesa


Partial Answer


OILY (DOILY - D, def: greasy)


MESA (double def)


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