As a country where landscapes range from dramatic mountains to vast desert to wonderful coastline, it’s no surprise that the list of things to do in Oman is a long one. So to help you out when planning your Oman holiday, we’ve compiled a list of some of our favourite activities in Oman…
Empty Quarter 4x4 Adventure
When it comes to things to do in Oman a four-wheel drive tour into the breath-taking Empty Quarter, of Wilfred Thesiger fame, where a mobile camp awaits is a must.
This is the desert as it should be, with soaring dunes as far as the eye can see. Spend the late afternoon walking in the dunes, enjoying evening drinks and watching the spectacular sunsets that so often bless the Middle East.
After a delicious three course supper, sleep under canvas surrounded by the silence of the desert. The next day trip is for exploring the unique and exceptionally photogenic desert environment.
Ride camels (subject to availability), sandboard down the steep-sided dunes, or just relax and admire the scenery of a place few travellers have ever been.
Why We Love It
Along the coast of the Arabian Sea there are enormous empty beaches where, at a certain time of year, turtles come ashore at night to lay their eggs.
Private Beach Camps
Original Travel has exclusive access to the private camps on the beach near Salalah and the Empty Quarter because what’s a holiday without some sun, beach and relaxation? The first stop is Mirbat Beach, which is found in a deserted cove just along the coast from Salalah and is worth the visit for those looking for things to do in Oman and beyond. After a lunch of fresh seafood, there's the chance to snorkel over vibrant corals, go boogie-boarding or join a fishing party.
The evening is spent around a campfire on the beach before supper under the stars and overnight in a comfortable and private tent.
The next day can either be spent relaxing at the beach camp, or visiting several sites of historical interest around Salalah, including Job's tomb, the Mughsayl blow holes, Al Balid (the ruined city once visited by Marco Polo during his travels), Khor Rawri (thought to have been the Queen of Sheba's palace), Mirbat with its traditional merchant houses famed for their intricately carved doors and windows, the fort and mosque at Taqah, and the ruins of the fabled Lost City of Ubar.
Why We Love It
The harif monsoon hits the Salalah during the summer, leaving a bizarre spectacle of lush greenery and waterfalls just a few hundred yards from arid desert landscapes.
Only available at the Six Senses Hideaway Zighy Bay, this next contender on the list of things to do in Oman gives a new meaning to arriving in style.
After flying into Dubai, drive up to the top of a pass over the border in Oman for wonderful views down to the hotel and turquoise sea beyond.
Within minutes you'll be hooked in, given instructions by a guide and then strapped to the front of an instructor and running at full pace off the edge of a cliff before gliding down to the beach below to be met by a butler with an ice-cold drink and an air-conditioned 4x4 to take you to reception. Is there a cooler way to arrive at any hotel in the world? Not that we know of.
Why We Love It
A unique way to arrive at your hotel.... pure brilliance.
Dolphin and Whale spotting
The waters of the Arabian Gulf are home to a staggering number of dolphins and migrating whales.
Original Travel use the best guides and boatmen to all but guarantee sightings, but more importantly to do so in a manner that causes no alarm to the mammals.
The best time to go on a dolphin and whale watching dhow cruise is early morning, when dolphin sightings are pretty much a certainty, but there is also a chance to see several different species of whale.
Why We Love It
One lucky group last year saw a pod of killer whales off Muscat.
Up next on the list of things to do in Oman it’s a tailor-made guided desert safaris are the ideal way to take in the very best scenery that Oman has to offer, and Original Travel can personalise an itinerary to suit your exact requirements.
We use only the best 4x4s and knowledgeable drivers/guide. Any itinerary should include the famous fort at Nakhl, spectacularly perched on a rocky prominence in the foothills of the Western Hajars, and a perfect stop on route into the dramatic Wadi Bani Awf.
The Wahiba Sands desert region provides an opportunity to put 4x4 driving skills to the ultimate test, taking on dunes, some with slopes at an angle of over 45 degrees.
Elsewhere, exploration of some of the beautiful wadis is wonderful, as there is often no-one else around, and it is possible to swim in crystal clear pools. Visit Nizwa for its fort and famous Friday animal market.
Nearby you can see the eerily deserted town of Tanuf and the recently restored fort at Jabrin before ascending Jebel Akhdar (the Green Mountain) for memorable views – a must when contemplating things to do in Oman.
Why We Love It
You can even enjoy a self-drive version of this trip, with us providing the vehicle, accurate directions, supplies and pre-booked accommodation and camping equipment.
Diving in Oman
Oman has some excellent and - relatively - unspoilt diving along long stretches of its coastline, and there are sure to be new dive sites discovered in the coming years.
From Muscat, the home of the Royal Opera House and Grand Mosque, you’d be forgiven for not automatically thinking all things diving. Yet, just west of the capital lie the Daymaniyat Islands. The islands are uninhabited, with a bird sanctuary and sea waters surrounding the islands, they are rich in sea life ranging from dolphins to turtles and are the perfect day trip for those looking to explore the underwater world.
In Musandam, the Six Senses Hideaway Zighy Bay is the perfect base for exploration of some of the best diving in Oman, with the widest biodiversity of marine creatures measured anywhere in the world. Some of the diving is a bit more technical, thanks to strong currents, but this is still an ideal place for beginners and experts alike.
Original Travel uses only the best dive outfits in both regions.