Villages, desert and dunes

Desert Oasis

Your guide will meet you at your hotel in Muscat and you will drive to the village of Fanja which is situated next to an extensive palm grove that runs alongside Wadi Fanja. Here you will have the opportunity to take photos of the old mud houses and Bid Bid castle. The next stop will be the old villages of Ibra and Minzifa with their many beautiful watchtowers and Ibra’s traditional souk. Finally, before reaching the desert you will visit Wadi Bani Khalid with it’s large, natural pools lined with lush, green palms and intricate eroded rocks.

On reaching Wahiba Sands you will visit a Bedouin House where you will see how the local Bedouin have lived for hundreds of years. Your guide will take you on a thrilling ride through the stunning dunes whose forms change with the direction of the wind.

At the end of the day your guide will return you to your hotel in Muscat.

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Wadi Bani Auf and Snake Canyon

Your guide will meet you at your hotel and your trip will start in Nakhl where you can visit the 17th century fort and the nearby thermal, hot springs.

You will next head to Wadi Bani Auf which is widely considered to be the most memorable off-road drive in the country. This is Oman at its most nerve-janglingly dramatic, with stupendous scenery and a different photo opportunity around every bend. You will have time to hike into Snake Canyon with it’s towering cliffs on either side for a picnic lunch. The deep pools are perfect for a cooling swim on a hot day.

After your hike you will continue through Wadi Bani Awf to the scenic village of Bilad Sayt, set on the north east slope of the Al Hajar mountains before returning to Muscat.

Proper footwear is required for this tour as the boulders and stones on the hike into Snake Canyon are smooth and can be slippery.

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The Grand Canyon of Oman

Your guide will pick you up from your hotel in Muscat and drive the 240km to Jebel Shams, the Grand Canyon of Oman. Jebel Shams is the highest peak in Oman at 3,028m. You will stop at Wadi Ghul at the base of the mountain along the way. Jebel Shams is the perfect place to escape the heat of Muscat with summer temperatures averaging around 20 degrees. During the winter months it can often drop below freezing! The north summit is the true peak of Jebel Shams but this is a restricted area as it’s occupied by a miltary base. The southern summit is open to the public however and is suitable for trekking via the W4 trail. You will have an hour to hike along the balcony of the canyon.

You will return to Muscat via Bahla where you will be able to see the oldest fort in Oman with it’s 12km wall. It is believed to have originally been built in pre-Islamic times and was listed as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1987. Return to hotel in Muscat.

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Nizwa and Jebel Akhdar

Your guide will meet you at your hotel in Muscat and you will drive to Nizwa, one of the oldest cities in Oman. Here you will visit the fort which was completed in the 1650s and is one of the oldest and largest in the country; characterised by it’s height, solid fortification and unique position in the middle of the town. You will also visit Nizwa’s traditional souq where you can shop for silver, antiques and leather goods. Another highlight is the cattle market which is held here every Friday morning.

Your tour will then continue to Fanjah and the abandoned village of Birkat al Mouz for photo stops before taking the winding road to Jebel Akhdar, the green jewel of the Al Hajaar Mountains. Jebel Akhdar is situated 2000m above sea level and experiences a pleasantly cool climate with approximately 300mm of rainfall annually which supports the famous terraced gardens of roses, pomegranates, walnuts, apricots and peaches. You will have the opportunity to walk among the hanging gardens along the original falaj system.

Your return journey to Muscat will take you through the villages of Saiq, Wadi Bani Habib and Al Ain.

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Muscat City Tour

Your guide will meet you at your hotel and take you to Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque (except Fridays when it is closed to non-Muslims). Construction of the mosque took six years and it was inaugurated by Oman’s beloved father, Sultan Qaboos on 4th May 2001. After your tour of the mosque you will drive along the waterfront Corniche to firstly visit the Fish Market, then Muttrah Souk where you can shop for silver, jewellery, spices and pashminas and finally one of Muscat’s fine museums for an overview of Omani history.

When you’ve had your fill of Muttrah you will proceed to Old Muscat where you will see Al Alam Palace which is the most flamboyant of the six royal residences of Oman’s ruling monarch, Sultan Haitham bin Tarik. The palace is not open to visitors but you can go up to the gates and take photos. Immediately behind the palace lies Old Muscat’s harbour flanked by a pair of rocky headlands on which sit the twin Portuguese forts of Jalali and Mirani.

Coastal road experience

Your guide will meet you at your hotel in Muscat and you will drive along the coast firstly to Wadi Shab.

Here you will take a short boat ride before walking through the verdant wadi towards the crystal, clear pools where you can swim.

The highlight of a visit to Wadi Shab is swimming into a cave and discovering a waterfall hidden within. After exploring Wadi Shab you will continue to the entrance of neighbouring Wadi Tiwi which is another spectacularly deep and narrow gorge full of lush plantations of dates and bananas.

Your return journey to Muscat will take you past Fins Beach which is one of the most beautiful beaches in Oman. You will have time to swim, snorkel and relax here before ending your day with a stop at Bimmah Sinkhole which is a natural limestone depression filled with a pool of turquoise water which reaches a depth of 20m.

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