Of all the countries in the region, Oman probably offers the most diverse scenery, plus it has a rich culture and proud history.
Tourism has arrived, but the pace is much more gradual, with the integrity of the destination foremost to any development plans.
On About Oman page, we have highlighted the main international hotels in the Muscat area. But travelling to Oman offers so much more. The options to explore the interior are tremendous and totally rewarding.
All can be easily personalised to suit your own requirements, but these are just a few of our Oman Touring Options:
In Muscat, we particularly suggest a visit to the incredible Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque (Non – Muslims are welcomed but avoid Fridays). A building of stunning design, with many areas allocated to gentle reflection. The new Omani Royal Opera House is equally stunning, and to have the opportunity to see a performance would be a unique experience.
The tours below can easily be tailored to suit your personal requirements. Nizwa and Wahiba Sands can both be visited on day trips, but we can also arrange a 3 day (2 nights) private tour combining both. Ask us for suggestions.
Located in the extreme south of the country, a 70-minute flight from Muscat. Even less developed than the north, with villages rather than towns. Salalah has some superb beaches and a more ‘tropical’ climate, particularly in the summer months, bustling souks and offers a totally different, highly traditional experience. For the seasoned traveller, it can be considered as a 3 day (2 night) extension. Hotels tend to be pleasant, mid-range and adequate, – but the main reason to visit is to explore the destination, not the hotels. In recent years it has become a popular winter beach retreat for Northern European charters whose focus rarely extends the beach!
Note Salalah has a peak “Green Season” June to September when the regions shrubbery suddenly bursts into life. It is time for drizzle. A welcome contrast to the heat and humidity found elsewhere.
The former capital and a fascinating hilltop market town that seems to have hardly changed over the centuries. You can drive from Muscat, taking about 3 hours each way, but most would prefer to spend at least one night staying in a simple, but totally adequate hotel, giving you adequate time to fully enjoy this lively and totally authentic town.
Probably the most popular option for visitors. Just under 3 hours drive from Muscat, on winding roads through the spectacular mountain scenery and then with the last 8km through the desert dunes. So it is possible as a day trip but, most prefer the experience of staying overnight at one of the desert camps.
We particularly suggest the Desert Night camp with 25 air-conditioned ‘tent’ style rooms and showers (See image selection). Although, for a totally authentic experience, there are much more simple and basic rustic camps. The day(s) are all about driving up and down the dunes in 4×4 jeeps with expert driver guides. Wonderfully exciting as you perch on the top of a high dune and then suddenly lurch forward seemingly into open space. It would probably not be suggested for those with bad backs or those in the advanced stage of pregnancy! If you are showing signs of nerves, just ask your driver to find smaller versions.
Oman Touring Options: Nature & Forts History & Culture
For those with more time, and looking for something totally memorable, we suggest an 8 day (7 night) tour commencing and ending in Muscat. You spend your first night in Muscat at one of our chosen hotels. On the second day, you visit hot springs at Rustaq with their alleged healing qualities, where the gates are adorned with verses from the Holy Koran. End the day in Nakhal, the highest fort city in Oman, where you overnight.
On the third day you travel on the Nizwa, and after a few hours of exploration, continue to Jabreen Castle which was build in the 17th century and still displays intricate wood carvings and ceiling paintings. Return to Nizwa but stop en route at Bahla Fort, the first Omani to be built in Islamic style. Overnight in Nizwa.
On the fourth day, you drive high up into the mountains to visit Jabal Charms, some 3000 metres above sea level. This is the Grand Canyon of Oman, and you have spectacular views of the deep gorges and valleys below. Overnight.
Continue on the fifth day to Jabal Akhdar, – the green mountain in Arabic – a mere 2,800 metres above sea level. Drive to the peak, and then drive to the Wahiba Sands for Desert camp overnight, with maybe some dune driving route. Overnight.
On the sixth day, leave the desert, visiting Wadi Bani Khalid (Wadi means valley in Arabic), and here you find generally clear deep blue waters and shady palm trees. So remember to pack your swimwear. After lunch continues to Sur, on the south coast where you will overnight. However, in the evening you will drive to Ras Al Jinz for your late-night green turtle watching experience.
On the seventh day, you leave Sur and drive along the scenic coastal road, visiting little fishing villages en route, arriving back in Muscat early evening. Overnight.
On day eight you either have the option flying home to the UK or maybe even travelling onto to the Maldives or Sri Lanka with Oman Air.
Please note that whilst the accommodation used on tour is adequate, it does not compare in standard to the main hotels we feature in Muscat.
Luxury Under Canvass Experiences
We can now offer luxurious under canvass experiences, either in the desert, up in the mountains or bedside an inland wadi (river) or maybe a combination of all three. Totally private, yet your experienced driver and guide are close at hand to reassure you. Ask us for suggestions.
Oman Touring Options
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A fascinating, highly traditional country, with just a handful of international hotels, wonderful culture and history, with varied sightseeing opportunities both on land and sea. Flying time is 8 hours. Our main featured hotels are grouped around the capital of Muscat. We also arrange the Six Senses Resort in Omans Musandam Peninsula which is usually accessed via Dubai.
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COVID-19 - Updated Information – March 2023.
Virtually all countries worldwide have relaxed their protocols on Covid and there are very few restrictions. However, most countries review this on a month-by-month basis and will take immediate action should cases return or increase.
As a general statement, we would say travel is back to about 90% of its 2019 pre-covid levels – although with maybe less staff than before. This can particularly apply to airports with check-in teams and baggage handlers, and also in hotels. If you are a long-time repeat visitor to a specific hotel it is quite possible you might know your way around the property better than the newly appointed staff – smile and maybe even try to assist!
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All price guides are Per Person Sharing Double Room (Entry level), based on travel between May and/or June when prices are generally at their lowest and include promotional offers. Supplements will probably apply at other times, particularly mid-summer in the Med, and for rooms and/or transfers arranged for single travellers.
For example, the Caribbean and Indian Ocean prices for winter can be approximately double the May - June level and about 50% more in Asia. For the Mediterranean & Canary Islands, Caribbean, Arabia and the Indian Ocean (except Sri Lanka) price guides generally include airfare and transfers.
Please refer to Travel Advice on our home page or look at www.fco.gov.uk as the Foreign Office may have issued specific destination information on safety and terrorism.
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