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12 Day Family Itinerary

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A longer trip to Oman allows you to go further, see more and do more. With 12 days, you can fully appreciate the wonders Oman has to offer from boat trips to mountain hikes, immersing yourself in the culture and creating an unforgettable experience.

Day 1

Salalah

Best visited during Khareef season, the Summer months of monsoon when the mountains take on a beautiful hue of green, Salalah and its surrounding is a haven for nature lovers. The starting point of this trip is a trip to explore its amazing marine life. The Hallaniyat Islands are home to many dolphins, whales, coral, and other marine life. There are also several wrecks in the area, including the famous Vasco Da Gama wreck, the Esmerelda.

Omani French Museum

Established by His Majesty, Sultan Qaboos bin Said

Honouring the close relationship Oman and France have enjoyed for centuries, the Omani French Museum was established by His Majesty, Sultan Qaboos bin Said and former French President, the late François Mitterrand in 1992. It is housed in Bait Faransa, the former residence of a French consul in Old Muscat.

With galleries detailing relations between the two countries, this museum provides an interesting snapshot of mostly 19th-century colonial life in Muscat. Of particular interest are a series of old photographs and maps documenting the capital in the last century. There's also a Paris map showing the itinerary of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos during his state visit in 1989.
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Wadi Al Qahfi

a natural swimming pool

Located nearly 50km from the Wilayat of Mahdah, fresh water flows most of the year. The rocky mountain scenery leads to a natural swimming pool below where you can swim between the grey stones and into the channel.

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Hallaniyat Islands

historic shipwrecks that dot the sea bed

Humpback whales and other marine life have made the water surrounding the Hallaniyat Islands home. These, together with several historic shipwrecks that dot the sea bed, provide great opportunities for any diving enthusiasts.

The Hallaniyat Islands offer untouched dive sites, and new ones are being discovered all the time. Tourism in the area is relatively new and the islands are only visited by liveaboard, giving you the chance to be one of the first to explore this untouched area. The reefs are covered with hard and soft corals with colourful residents including plenty of macro life. The seascapes include walls, spur and groove and some overhangs with a lot of fish life. Diving highlights are undoubtedly the opportunity to be in the water with the resident population of humpback whales but may also include encounters with manta rays and other whales. Anything is possible here. The islands boast a healthy marine life and you’ll see huge schools of fish at most dive sites. Huge pods of dolphin are often seen as are honeycomb morays and green turtles. There are also opportunities to explore some wrecks. The diving in the area is exploratory and suited to experienced divers.
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Telegraph Island

a favourite with tourists

Named after a telegraph station built on the island by the British in the 19th century, Telegraph Island is a favourite with tourists looking to explore the ancient abandoned ruins, snorkel in the surrounding waters or simply enjoy a Dhow cruise to the island to witness the stunning fjords of Khawr Ash Sham.

The expression “going around the bend” is not just an idle phrase. For a handful of British soldiers in the mid-1800s, being stationed “around the bend” was the worst place you could possibly be, a lonely island outpost where soldiers slowly lost their minds in the desert heat. From 1864 to 1869, Jazirat al Maqlab, or “Telegraph Island,” was an active telegraph outpost crucial to communication between India and Britain. For five years after the telegraphy was decommissioned, British soldiers continued to man the isolated outpost. Reportedly, every single man stationed at the outpost “around the bend” of the Musandam peninsula completely lost his mind from the monotony and heat. Stuck for months on the football-field sized island, cut off from the outside world, and subject to intense desert heat, the solders were slowly driven mad. Today the island is a ghostly remnant of the once-great British Empire. The outpost was abandoned in the mid-1870s, and the buildings have crumbled. The island now serves as a snorkeling and fishing destination rather than a strategic communication hub, but the oppressive heat and the lonely atmosphere that helped drive the soldiers “around the bend” remains.
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Day 2 – 3

East of Salalah

East of Salalah are some of Oman’s most interesting attractions, including Wadi Darbat and Mirbat. With its lake and, during the Khareef season, mist-covered hills it is a sight to behold and believed to be one of the most scenic spots in Dhofar. Here, children can go for a small boat ride. Considered to be one the largest solvent sinkholes in the world, Tawi Ateer is a haven for bird watching enthusiasts and those that want to learn more about nature. You’ll soon see how appropriate it is that the name literally translates to The well of birds’. Dhofar’s highest mountain is also home to the Jebel Samhan Nature Reserve, one of the places in the world to find wild Arabian leopards and other larger mammals. Although not open to the public, the plateau before the reserve allows for breath-taking views of the wadis, villages and coast below. Ideal for camping.

Jebel Samhan

home to Oman’s Leopard Sanctuary

Dhofar’s highest mountain is also home to Oman’s Leopard Sanctuary, for which special permission to visit is required. However, visitors can explore a host of attractions ranging from the Tawi Ateer Sinkhole to the round houses of the indigenous Jebbali tribe, before setting up camp on the peak’s plateau – just before  the sanctuary’s entrance.

Jebel Samhan is one of the major mountain ranges of Dhofar, whose highest peak reaches 2,100 meters. Jebel Samhan has many levels that are traversed by deep and narrow mountain passes, some of which are up to a thousand feet deep. In the plain of Jebel Samhan different plant species such as acacia and frankincense trees grow. The narrow mountain passes are poor in water, but there are numerous streams that serve as an important source of water for most of the animals living here. (Classified as an endangered species) In addition to the Arabian leopards are many other mammals native to these mountains, including the Arabian Gazelle, the fox and the Nubian goat.
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Al Baleed Archaeological Park

UNESCO World Heritage Site

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is part of the Land of Frankincense. Al Baleed Archaeological Park in Salalah is a large area with remains of what was once a very important trading port from the 8th to 16th century, enabling the widespread distribution of Frankincense grown further inland.

Standard opening hours are from 8am to 8pm with a modest entrance charge per car.
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Museum of Frankincense Land

Rich in maritime history

The Museum of Frankincense Land in Salalah borders the ruins of Al Baleed Archaeological Park and is dedicated to the trading history of this ancient port. Visitors can discover how trade with Frankincense and maritime strength ensured the region flourished in the 12th century.

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Hallaniyat Islands

historic shipwrecks that dot the sea bed

Humpback whales and other marine life have made the water surrounding the Hallaniyat Islands home. These, together with several historic shipwrecks that dot the sea bed, provide great opportunities for any diving enthusiasts.

The Hallaniyat Islands offer untouched dive sites, and new ones are being discovered all the time. Tourism in the area is relatively new and the islands are only visited by liveaboard, giving you the chance to be one of the first to explore this untouched area. The reefs are covered with hard and soft corals with colourful residents including plenty of macro life. The seascapes include walls, spur and groove and some overhangs with a lot of fish life. Diving highlights are undoubtedly the opportunity to be in the water with the resident population of humpback whales but may also include encounters with manta rays and other whales. Anything is possible here. The islands boast a healthy marine life and you’ll see huge schools of fish at most dive sites. Huge pods of dolphin are often seen as are honeycomb morays and green turtles. There are also opportunities to explore some wrecks. The diving in the area is exploratory and suited to experienced divers.
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Day 4

West of Salalah

The natural beauty of the region becomes apparent when travelling in the direction of the border with Yemen. From blowholes and caves to secluded beaches, this day is dedicated to the special highlights located west of Dhofar’s capital, Salalah. A favourite family picnic spot, the end of Mughsayl beach holds a special surprise during Khareef. Only then do the blowholes erupt, pushing sea water metres into the air and drenching anyone adventurous enough to stand too close. Wadi Dawkah makes for a great diversion on your way back to Salalah. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the location is open to the public with special viewing areas providing panoramic views of the five square kilometres area densely populated with Boswellia sacra, more commonly known as Frankincense trees.

Anti-Gravity Point – Mirbat

Anti-Gravity Point

Not far from Mirbat, people from all around the world come to this Anti-Gravity Point to experience the out-of-this-world feeling of having their car seemingly move up-hill with no driver input or power.

Many people come to Salalah Anit Gravity Point to see their cars going up the hill at Neutral gear (without any acceleration). This is a really amazing experience and a unique one. The car can move at a speed of more than 40 to 60 kilometers per hour without any acceleration. This point is near Tawi Atair / Mirbat and you can visit this place while going to Mirbat. You can also plan to go to this place after visiting Wadi Darbat and driving for aproximately 20 to 30 minutes on the Eastern side.
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Wadi Snaiq & Dahnat

Explore ancient stone ruins

Wadi Dahnat boasts ancient stone ruins, indicating that this was once part of a prosperous settlement. Nearby Wadi Seenaq has its own khawr (lagoon).

Wadi Dahnat boasts ancient stone ruins, indicating that this was once part of a prosperous settlement. Nearby Wadi Seenaq has its own khawr (lagoon).
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Al Baleed Archaeological Park

UNESCO World Heritage Site

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is part of the Land of Frankincense. Al Baleed Archaeological Park in Salalah is a large area with remains of what was once a very important trading port from the 8th to 16th century, enabling the widespread distribution of Frankincense grown further inland.

Standard opening hours are from 8am to 8pm with a modest entrance charge per car.
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Hasik Cliffs

breath-taking limestone formations

Located two hours from Salalah, the cliffs of Hasik form part of the breath-taking limestone formations that run along most of Dhofar’s coastline – this area makes for a spectacular drive.

Positioned at the most eastern end of the Dhofar coast before the cliffs of Jebel Samhan interrupt, Hasik is worth the two-hour drive from Salalah for the journey more than the destination.
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Day 5 – 6

Musandam

Easily reached by flight via Muscat, the Musandam Peninsula, an exclave of Oman surrounded by the UAE, enjoys a breath-taking location facing the Strait of Hormuz and Sea of Oman. Musandam has many scenic bays and fjords that can be discovered by boat or Dhow cruise. Dolphins often frequent the waters and so does plenty of other colourful marine life. Jebel Hareem is Musandam’s highest point and what better way to explore it than by mountain bike. Local tour operators can arrange pick up or drop off whenever and wherever required.

Dibba

a relaxing getaway

The small town of Dibba is home to some of the nicest hotels and beaches in Musandam, providing a relaxing getaway from the city.

Dibba Al-Baya (Arabic: دبا البيعة, Dibba Al-Baya) is a small border town in the southeastern corner of Oman's Musandam Peninsula exclave.  About 5,000 people live in this Omani town.
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Snorkelling

a memorable experience

Thanks to its clear waters teeming with exotic marine life and coral formations, snorkelling in Musandam is always a memorable experience. Lima Rock is especially renowned for the variety of fish, rays and other creatures, as well as the many caves and fissures available to explore.

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Village of Kumzar

requires special permission to visit

Nestled in an isolated bay close to the Strait of Hormuz, this village is only accessible by boat. Locals speak their own language known as Kumzari but, given its remote location, the village is surprisingly modern.

One of the most inaccessible settlements in Oman, the famously remote town of KUMZAR sits perched in solitary splendour at the northernmost edge of Musandam, hemmed in by sheer mountains and accessible only by boat. A “visit” to the town therefore involves sitting in your boat in the harbour about 100m offshore and seeing what you can, although it’s still well worth making the trip out here for the magnificent coastal scenery en route, as well as for the tantalizing glimpse of Oman’s most reclusive town at the end of it. Many of Musandam’s best diving spots are also located in the waters around Kumzar for more details. The town overlooks the Straits of Hormuz, one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes, a fact reflected in the unique language spoken by its inhabitants, Kumzari. The village is said to be around seven hundred years old, its inhabitants including a hotchpotch of ethnic groups ranging from Yemeni to Zanzibari – the colourful theory that sailors shipwrecked off the nearby coast were also integrated into the population is backed up by the remarkable number of European and Hindi loan words found in Kumzari. The town’s population currently stands at around five thousand, with its own school, hospital, power station and desalination plant. The inhabitants live largely by fishing for nine months of the year, netting barracuda, tuna, kingfish and hammour .
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Jebel al Harim

A haven for biking enthusiasts

Offering spectacular views and adventurous paths, Jebel Hareem is the Musandam’s highest peak and a haven for biking enthusiasts. Local tour operators offer guided mountain biking tours.

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Day 7

Salmah Plateau

The easiest route to the plateau is to fly into Muscat, following which you can rent a 4WD vehicle to reach the plateau, which is about 120km from Muscat. The plateau itself offers some stunning attractions worth visiting, including Majlis Al Jinn, one of the largest underground caves in the world, the Majlis Al Jinn, is a special undertaking. Prior permission is required from the Ministry of Tourism and the help of a guide is mandatory. If travelling with smaller children, you might wish to opt for a visit to the beehive tombs of Al Jaylan instead, before setting up camp on the plateau.

Oil and Gas Exhibition Centre

Learn about the oil and gas industry

The Oman Oil and Gas Exhibition Centre highlights the journey of the discovery, extraction, and use of fossil fuels in Oman through interactive displays.

Established in 1995 under Petroleum Development Oman (PDO), the centre particularly appeals to visitors interested in learning about the oil and gas industry and how it has contributed to the growth of infrastructure throughout Oman.

The PDO planetarium lies adjacent to the centre and boasts a “full dome” digital system to teach kids and adults about astronomy in an engaging way.

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Wadi Al Khoud

great for off-roading

Located close to the old village of Al Khoud, Wadi Al Khoud is great for off-roading, with its stony bed and small water pools. It leads to the village of Fanja.

“Wadi Al Khoudh” is located  in Wilayat Al Seeb, and is considered one of the largest wadi basins in the Sultanate. Pools are formed in the wadi following heavy rain. It is well worth a visit, to enjoy the green salience, the beautiful rock formations surrounding and its clear water pools and springs of water of the valley
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Wadi Dayqah Dam

An amazing picnic area

Wadi Dayqah Dam is one of the largest on the Arabian Peninsula and a source of irrigation and protection for the surrounding villages, as it reduces the number of flash floods in the area. A picnic area has been built atop the dam with great views for all to enjoy.

Wadi Dayqah Dam is quite a spectacular sight! Set in the rugged limestone Wadi (valley) this huge construction is a real contrast of natural Omani beauty and impressive human engineering. Opened in 2012 the dam was built to collect the periodic rain fall from the high peaks above and control the volume of water flowing through the narrow torrent, ‘dayqah’, to the villages below. This still maintains the ancient “Falaj” irrigation system whilst controlling the surges of water rolling off the hillside. The dam is quite a spectacle for Oman and is by far the highest in the country. The water lake is 8 kilometres (5 miles) long and can hold 100 million cubic meters of rain water.
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Camping – Fins

a coastal village

Only a short drive from Bimmah Sinkhole, Fins is a coastal village mainly known for its hidden beaches and coves framed by white sands, turquoise waters and the Al Hajar Mountains as backdrop. Perfect for a memorable camping experience.

It’s legal to wild camp in Oman. And, done responsibly, it’s one of the most rewarding ways to take in the country’s varied terrain.
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Day 8 – 9

Wadi Bani Khalid & A’Sharqiyah Sands

A short drive away, Wadi Bani Khalid is one of the most photographed attractions in Oman. While an entire day can easily be spent here, simply enjoying the sheer beauty of the wadi and its water pools, a trek from here to Wadi Tiwi across the mountain range is a unique experience and one that must only be undertaken with a guide. With smaller children it is recommended to spend the day at Wadi Bani Khalid before heading to one of the many desert camps in the Sharqiyah Sands for one or more unforgettable overnights for the family.

Sur Maritime Museum

Oman’s rich seafaring heritage

Showcasing Oman’s maritime history and traditional boatbuilding craftsmanship, the Sur Maritime Museum bears testament to the trade that marks Oman’s rich seafaring heritage. The famous, original Fatah Al Khair dhow is displayed here.

Sur City is famous for its maritime heritage, which highlights the leading role that Omanis played in maritime navigation across a long period in history. In order to preserve this heritage, and to ensure that the coming generations know of it, the Maritime Museum in the Wilayat of Sur was established to reflect various types of Omani maritime heritage. Efforts have been made by the citizens of the wilayat and researchers in Omani heritage to preserve this slice of history. The Museum was established in 1987 at the Al Orouba Club. Since its inception, it has been serving a scientific cause for the benefit of those interested in the Omani maritime history. The museum includes several sections. The emblem of the wilaya ‘Al Ghanja Ship’ is located at the entrance of the museum. In the middle of the ship section, there are different types of Omani ships. The visitors can see images of famous makers of ships, locally called Al Wistad, in addition to images of a number of sailors and captains of ships locally called “Nokhidha,” as well as photos of ports visited by those ships.
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Wadi Shab

A famous waterfall and crystal clear water pools,

Located just off the Sur-Muscat coastal road, Wadi Shab can be reached via a short boat ride. A short hike will bring visitors to the wadi’s famous waterfall and crystal clear water pools, and even a partially submerged cave.

Visiting Wadi Shab is one of the top things to do in Oman and you need to include it on your list. Think a fantastic gorge, warm blue pools, and a hidden waterfall!
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Al Ayjah Lighthouse

Offering panoramic views of Sur

The Al Ayjah Lighthouse was built by the Portuguese and was actually a defence tower turned lighthouse that used to guide Dhows safely into Sur lagoon. The tower is close to the Dhow Yard and Sur Maritime Museum.

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Jalan Bani Bu Ali

A town steeped in history with old watchtowers

Jalan Bani Bu Ali is a town steeped in history with old watchtowers, an old fort and ornate carved wooden doors at every turn. However, it is most famous for the souq, which is open every Friday morning and sells a variety of modern and traditional goods.

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Day 10

Turtle watching

The turtle reserve at Ras Al Jinz offers a unique glimpse into the life of turtles, and how for decades they return to the same beach to lay their eggs. A coastal city with colourful past, Sur once was an important trading hub, thanks to its natural harbour and strategic location. At the last remaining Dhow yard, one can witness how Dhows are built by hand – without plans. A true engineering marvel and interesting for the entire family. Green turtles are endangered, so the rangers at the Ras Al Jinz nature reserve take special care not to disturb the animals when showing visitors around – this includes mothers laying eggs at night and hatchlings making their way to the ocean at sunrise.

Village of Lima

famous for its local handicrafts

Surrounded by mountains and accessible by boat, the village of Lima is famous for its local handicrafts - especially the Al Jarz, a small traditional axe. The boat trip itself will take you through stunning marine vistas where you can see unique rock formations.

This is a small village separated from Wilayt Khasab in Musandam Governorate by rugged mountainous peaks. That’s why the best way to reach this village is by boats that will take you through marine vistas that will be engraved in your memory for ever. There visitors will enjoy the fantastic rock formations of the mountain range directly overlooking the sea, and birds hovering over the sapphire waters through the distance that separates Khasab from Lima. The village is known for its local crafts specially the unique AlJarz.
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Khawr Ruri

Dhofar’s largest nature reserve

Khawr Ruri  Dhofar’s largest nature reserve - is home to  a huge varietyfish, birds and plants. This nature reserve contains UNESCO World Heritage site - Samharam port.  For bird watching enthusiasts, there is the opportunity to see a large number of migratory and local birds, including Pink Flamingos.

It is considered the most attractive to tourists as it contains Khawr Ruri port, famously known as Samharam. Nearby, there are important ruins that date back to prehistoric times. The port was often mentioned in Greek, Hellenic and Arabic historical scrolls, being the main port for the export of frankincense in Dhofar. Therefore the khawr (lagoon) has gained special status, as it is not only a nature reserve, but an important heritage reserve as well, and has been included in the World Heritage List. Before that, it was a natural reserve helping to maintain the biological balance, where many fish, birds and plants live. The lagoon is connected to Wadi Darbat.
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The Sugar Dunes of Al Khaluf

A 4x4 experience

Close to the town of Filim, the Sugar Dunes of Al Khaluf truly live up to their name, with a vast expanse of white sand dunes stretching all the way to the coast. A 4WD vehicle is required to explore this area, and it is recommended to use the services of a guide.

White desert, also known as Sugar Dunes or Al Khaluf Dunes is another natural phenomenon in Oman located near fishing village of Al Khaluf, 400km south of Muscat. Khaluf sands is one of the most alluring locations in Oman, but also one of the most challenging for the inexperienced driver. The big white sand dunes that are found beyond the village of Khaluf are very soft, and only approachable with a good 4×4. The dunes are permanently exposed to strong winds from the ocean, and are constantly moving. This prevents them from hardening and, consequently, it is much easier to get stuck here than in other places where sand dunes exist.
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Wadi Al Jizzi
Wadi Al Jizzi connects Al Batinah Coast to Al Buraimi, it is one of the oldest passages that crosses the Northern Oman Mountains. It was well known as a mining center for copper production in Oman. Today, it is famous for its rock formations from which copper is extracted. Pillow lavas (volcanic) are less than 35 km southwest of the main intersection with Sohar-Al Buraimi Road, and it overlooks the old road east of AS SUHAYLAH village. About 95 million years ago, this magma cooled at the bottom of the ocean and allowed people to enjoy the amazing formations and turn back millions of years.
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Day 11

Tiwi

Located between Sur and Muscat, the white pebble and sand beaches of Bimmah, Fins, and Tiwi are an incredible sight. The roads approaching Wadi Tiwi are twisty and narrow, and the perfect excuse to park the car and explore the area on foot. Villages along the route are surrounded by date palms and still use falaj, the traditional methods of irrigation. Close t o Wadi Tiwi is Wadi Shab, which can only be reached by boat or by wading across during low tide. Natural water pools, a waterfall and hidden cave await those entering the wadi. Bring your swimming gear and enjoy.

Oman Natural History Museum

Located at the Ministry of Heritage and Culture

The Oman Natural History Museum provides a fascinating insight into the geological heritage of the Sultanate and its impressive flora and fauna, with displays of mammals, insects and birds as well as a beautiful botanical garden outside.

Highlights include the Whale Room, which features the large skeleton of a sperm whale which washed up on Oman’s shores in the 1980s. Natural History Museum of Oman was opened on 30 December 1985,  . The Museum shows the Omani environment diversity through offers of terrain, geology, plants, insects, wild animals and marine life. Despite the small size of the Museum but abounding of facts dealing with biodiversity of the Sultanate of Oman. The Museum features stuffed animals rarely found in the wilds of types and species living in the land of Oman, skeletons of marine organisms, birds and reptiles lived in Omani environment.
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Jabreen Castle

A must-see destination

Jabreen Castle is a must-see destination located just a short drive from Bahla. It is truly an architectural masterpiece with intricate mural designs, traditional Omani crafts, and a beautiful view of the surrounding date palm oasis.

Rising without competition from the surrounding plain, Jabreen Castle is an impressive sight. Even if you have had a surfeit of fortifications, it's worth making the effort to clamber over one more set of battlements – Jabreen is one of the best-preserved and whimsical castles of them all. Head for the flagpole for a bird's-eye view of the latticed-window courtyard at the heart of the keep; the rooms here have distinctive painted ceilings.
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Royal Opera House Muscat

A beautiful example of modern Omani architecture

The Royal Opera House Muscat hosts world-class shows and brings artists from around the world to Oman, including ballet, operas, musicals and more. Luxury shopping and fine dining is available at the Opera Galleria next door.

Royal Opera House Muscat is the leading arts and culture organization in the Sultanate of Oman.The vision of the Opera House is to serve as a centre of excellence in global cultural engagement. We strive to enrich lives through diverse artistic, cultural, and educational programs. The multidisciplinary work of Royal Opera House Muscat showcases rich and diverse artistic creations from Oman, the region, and the world; provides a space for culture and socioeconomic development reflections and actions; inspires audiences and nurtures creativity with innovative programs; fosters cultural vitality and unleashes talent; promotes cultural tourism; and puts cultural diplomacy into practice by reinvigorating global and multi-disciplinary collaborations and exchanges.
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Sur Dhow Yard

The only surviving dhow-building yard in Oman.

Close to the Sur Maritime Museum, Sur’s dhow yard is the perfect place to witness craftsman build dhows the traditional way, without plans. This is the only surviving dhow-building yard in Oman.

If there is one industrial town in Oman that has not lost its importance from the days of yore, it’s Sur. You know you’ve entered a town that prides on its traditional heritage when the maze of streets showcase ancient residential dwellings each of which still carry a mark of the past on its majestic carved doors and Arabesque windows. Long considered as Oman’s prime trading ports, the calm and serene coastal town is the capital of A’Sharqiyah on the coast of the of Oman Sea. Sur has always been the epicentre of travel and trade in this region. Its vessels have ruled the waters since many centuries! Its strategic location has always helped in maintaining and monitoring peace in the of Oman Sea and the Indian Ocean. Although it no longer retains its prominence in the trade industry, Sur continues to be the best in building wooden ships, at least in the Gulf region. A couple of centuries back this town built ships for clients in China, India, Iraq and other prominent trade destinations in the region. And although the dhow yards in Sur have reduced considerably given the fast decline in the demand for dhows since almost a century now, the charm and character of the laid-back town remains unfazed.
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Day 12

Muscat

Oman’s capital is always worth a visit. After days on the road, it is the perfect place to end the perfect holiday. Located at the Ministry of Heritage & Culture, the Natural History Museum offers interesting insights into Oman’s natural history, from its geology to its flora and fauna. The skeleton of a washed ashore sperm whale is displayed, providing a unique glimpse at one of the largest mammals in the world. One of the many city beaches, Al Qurum Beach is great for long walks or simply watching local footballers play against each other – or joining in. A perfect way to end the trip.

Al Ansab Wetlands

a protected area

Set in the middle of Muscat, the Al Ansab Wetlands are a protected area and an ornithologists dream. Over 293 species of birds stop over at different times throughout the year, with over 80 resident species.

Muscat: Colours and fragrance fill the air at Al Ansab Wetland where winter sees the best of plants and trees bloom. The wetland has 113 species of Omani trees and shrubs. “The wetland has been there since mid- to late 80s but it was not the way it is now. At that time, may be it was used for treating purposes. Since 2011, The company ( Haya ) started focusing more on it and made a lot of changes. It is now all treated water and therefore you do not have any smell in the wetland areas. “With the addition of shrubs and trees, the area of wetland is attracting more birds. Initially, 150 bird species were reported. Now, it is more than 300.” The wetland has five lagoons, the biggest of which has a depth of four metres. The water, besides attracting birds, also supports greenery. Most of the trees and shrubs are naturally grown. But Haya Water team planted 300 trees to create a forest area, which have all grown and today provide extended shade. In the process, there have been other trees that have sprouted naturally such as banyan trees and date palms. A little further away, adjacent to the nursery of the wetland, the team planted more trees.
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Seeb Souq

a sprawling market

Located along the coastal road in Seeb, this souq is a sprawling market selling anything from stunning traditional jewellery and luxurious perfume oils, to livestock and locally grown fruits.

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Al Alam Palace, Al Jalali and Al Mirani Forts

Located in the heart of Old Muscat

The ceremonial palace of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, Al Alam Palace was rebuilt as a royal residence in 1972 and is located in the heart of Old Muscat. It is flanked on either side by the impressive twin Jalali and Mirani Forts originally built by the Portuguese in the 16th century. Both of these majestic buildings are still in use, and although they are not open to the public, tourists can admire the architecture from the yard and at the gates.

At the heart of Old Muscat is Al Alam Palace (“Flag Palace”), the most important of the six royal residences of the ruling monarch, Sultan Qaboos, which are dotted around Muscat, Salalah and Sohar. Built in 1972, the palace is Oman’s most flamboyant example of contemporary Islamic design, with two long wings centred on a colourful, cube-like central building, its flat, overhanging roof supported by extravagantly flared blue and gold columns. The palace isn’t open to the public, although you can get a good view of the facade from the iron gates at the front. The palace complex is impressively stage-managed, approached via a long pedestrianized boulevard framed by two arcaded colonnades, with copious amounts of highly polished marble covering every available surface. On either side stretches a cluster of impressive government buildings: huge, snow-white edifices sporting crenellated rooftops, traditional wooden balconies and window shutters. Look right as you approach the palace and you’ll also see a fine section of the original city walls snaking up the hillside, punctuated with three large watchtowers en route.
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Yiti Beach

Frequented by locals as well as tourists

The Yiti Beach, located beyond the village of Yiti, is a small beach - about one kilometre long - that can be easily reached by car. Frequented by locals as well as tourists, it is a great spot to enjoy barbecues, camping, and fishing.

Jagged rocks formed by sea salt winds and waves stick out of the Sea of Oman creating the sheltered bay of Yiti Beach. Just 28-kilometres from the centre of Muscat, the beach is known as a place of solitude and relaxation – an escape from the hectic city. The sand takes on an orange hue and the water changes to a deeper blue as the sun sets and the light changes. Lay on the rocks overlooking the beach at twilight or find an area along the strip of soft sand.
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  • - 1 Day

    1 Day

    One day may not feel long to experience everything Oman has to offer but with some careful planning and clever selections you can certainly make the most of every minute.

  • - 3 Days

    3 Days

    Whether an extended weekend, stopover or short city break, three days in Oman can deliver lasting memories and build anticipation for your next visit.

  • - 7 Days

    7 Days

    If you have a bit more time, why not head to Oman’s far south and explore Salalah – the gulf’s only tropical destination.

  • - 12 Days

    12 Days

    A longer trip to Oman allows you to go further, see more and do more. With 12 days, you can fully appreciate the wonders Oman has to offer from boat trips to mountain hikes, immersing yourself in the culture and creating an unforgettable experience.