A country of desert, riverbed oases and long coastlines. Land of Wahiba Sands is a region of dunes. Muscat, is home to the massive, contemporary Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque. A rich heritage and embracing society with unique identity, Oman is a must on your list..!
Glimpses of Oman
- Visit to the Royal Opera House
- Explroe the Old Muscat city
- Visit Bait Al Zubair Museum
- Western Hajjar Mountains
Arrive at Muscat International Airport. Transfer by private air-conditioned vehicle to your hotel in Muscat. This short drive to your hotel would provide you the first impressions of a clean and green capital. During the drive our driver/guide would enlighten you with some basic facts about the Muscat and Oman in general.
You start with a visit to the Royal Opera House which is the leading arts and culture organization in the Sultanate of Oman. Located in Muscat, Oman, the vision of the Opera House is to serve as a centre of excellence in global cultural engagement. The “Opera Galleria”, Royal Opera House Muscat’s new flagship shopping destination, is host to wonderful shops, international brands, and an array of international cafés and dining options. It boasts 50 shops offering a wide range and carefully balanced mix of art outlets, gems, fashion and perfumes.
Later you will explore Old Muscat, the clean capital city. A unique blend of the ancient & the modern, Muscat is a beautiful clean city, which lies in the middle of a maze of brown pleated mountains, lulled by the Arabian Sea. The city has undergone dramatic development in the past two or three decades, however it has never lost its pride in its heritage & culture.
Your tour includes visit the Bait Al Zubair Museum. With the variety of exhibits, modern display methods and information provided, the museum serves as a real window on Oman’s rich heritage and culture.
A photo stop at the magnificent Al Aalam Palace (the official residence of Sultan Qaboos) flanked by the twin Portuguese forts of Mirani & Jalali.
You would now explore the enchanting Muttrah souq with its narrow covered alleys where the exotic smells of mounds of spices, coffees, ancient remedies and enticing perfumes fill the air.
Check-in at the hotel (check in time is 14.00 Hrs).
Before you leave for Nizwa, you will visit the *Grand Mosque, which is an architectural marvel and is perhaps the new landmark of the city. You will continue your drive through the ministries area where you can see a number of modern buildings with touches of Islamic architecture.
The Grand Mosque is open Sat to Wed 0800-1100 hrs only. Ladies visiting the Grand Mosque are required to cover their head with scarf and do not wear shorts, beachwear or sleeveless outfits as they are to be fully covered where as men visiting the Grand Mosque should wear long trousers.
The Jebel Shams, translated lterally to “Sun Mountan” is the highest peak in Oman. Today you will explore the heights of Hajjar Mountains. You may explore the village of Al Hamra, at the foot of the mountains, where 400 years old mud houses are still standing and occupied. Start driving up the Western Hajjar Mountains rising over 2000 metres, which can be seen from far away as you approach them. The mountain village of Misfah with stone dwellings and the terrace farming village of Wadi Ghul also would be visited.
Continue to Jebel Shams (mountain of the Sun) is the tallest peak in Oman at a height of) 3010 metres offering spectacular views of the surroundings.Jebel shams is home to weaver of heavy woolen rugs in distinctive black, red and brown geometric designs.You will discover small villages hidden in the mountain ranges as you climb up the steep and winding road.
Jebel shams is home to weaver of heavy woolen rugs in distinctive black, red and brown geometric designs.You will discover small villages hidden in the mountain ranges as you climb down the steep and winding road.
Drive to Al Hamra.
Forts and castles are Oman's most striking cultural landmarks and together with its towers and city walls, they have historically been used as defensive bastions or look-out points. It is estimated that there are over 500 forts, castles and towers in Oman. Your visit today would include one of them, which are more remarkable & striking in their architecture & style. You may visit the Nizwa fort and the Nizwa souq. The 17th century round fort and the souq famous for intricate silver jewelry are the major attractions of Nizwa. Built on a solid base of rock, the huge tower was designed to withstand the vibrations of 24 cannons.
Before you continue towards the dunes, you will take the winding road up to the picturesque Wadi Bani Khalid. The Wadi has several beautiful mountain formations and landscapes. The walk to the pools of Wadi Bani Khalid is quite interesting, along the falaj (small irrigation canals) and past mango trees and other crops. Farmers in the area, despite the rough terrains, have managed to cultivate land at the foothills of the mountains by using the water streams to irrigate the crops.
This is quite a refreshing visit; and you would be able enjoy a swim in the waters here. Continue your drive towards Wahiba Sands.
You will drive to the interior of Oman, passing the desert town of Ibra and you wou will start seeing the beauty of the sand dunes rising as you drive closely along the bordering villages. On the inland side of the great mountainous backbone of the Sultanate of Oman, where sands lap at the thresholds of farmlands, a string of border towns marks the zone of transition between nomadic and settled peoples. In the oasis villages of Oman, however, desert and village economies have mingled for ages to their mutual benefit.
Living within and along the Sands are approximately 3000 pastoralist Bedouins belonging to different tribes and who owns mainly herders of goats and camels.
Running south from the Eastern Hajjar Mountains to Arabian Sea, the Wahiba Sands, described a Sand sea, stretches almost 200 kms in length and about 100 kms in width. The dunes rise above 100-150 meters in different shades of colour and shifting sands, is the perfect place for both the romantic and the adventurous. A roller-coaster ride over the dunes would a thrilling fun especially for those who are first time visitors to the desert. On your way, you are likely to pass by many of the Bedouine house, and encounter beoudine people who are very hospitable and not spoilt by tourism.
Be amazed at the spectacular suset over the dunes! You will certainly enjoy the ambience at your desert camp and of course the dinner.
WAHIBA SANDS- Sur-Qalhat-Wadi Shaab/Wadi Tiwi-MUSCAT & Departure)
Getting up early in the morning provides you a fantastic opportunity to explore the dunes by foot or to just watch the shifting colours of the dunes. Enjoy camel rides inside the camp before saying good-bye to the dunes!
Today you would see some fascinating diversity of Oman’s landscape; from dunes of Wahiba to verdant wadis and the shores of Oman! The drive takes you through a cross section of Oman’s geography through arid lands, wadis, and coastal villages. So embark on a long thrilling drive back to Muscat. With stunning views of the waters of the Arabian Sea on one side and the rocky cliffs on the other, this is an exciting drive along the coast road, though the road has recently been made tarmc.
Stop at the coastal town of Sur for a quick short visit. Sur has historical importance and dhows used to sail to India and other countries from Sur. Many of the rich people of Oman belong to Sur and you can see many big seaside mansions along the way. Driving on to Sur, we would visit the Dhow building yard (though in recent times, unfortunately, the amount of dhows built here is very few! We are therefore unable to guarantee ant activity during the visit).
A few kilometers away are the ruins at of Qalhat, one of the oldest towns and seaports in Oman. However, only the remnants of the city walls remain here today. Visit ruins of the tomb of the holy lady, Bibi Miriam, which stands high up on the cliff top.
Not far away is another picturesque wadi- Wadi Tiwi. A walk through the narrow roads leads you to lush plantations and pools with clear water. For a wlk into the wadi, you could choose either Wadi Shaab or Wadi Tiwi. Wadi Shaab is a wadi between cliffs and normally has water.
Stop at the Bimah Sinkhole, a spectacular limestone crater with blue green water at the bottom.
Arrive at Muscat. Drop off at Muscat Airport at 17.00 Hrs
Temperature checking and regular screening is carried out for Hotel Staff, Guests, Drivers, and Guides.
- 4 Days / 3 Night