Muscat : Muscat, the capital city of Oman lies sparking white, topped with golden minarets in the middle of amaze of brown pleated mountains reaching down to the Arabian sea. Described as “Arabia’s jewel”, this city is a blend of the old and the new. Muscat is green as green can be, and defies being classified as part of a desert country. The roads are lined with well-
The Corniche, with its promenade and souqs (markets) is one of the highlights of the city. The old souq of muttrah is an ideal spot for tourists to buy keepsakes and treasures Greater Muscat boasts high-
Nizwa:Nizwa, the verdant oasis city with its blend of the modern and the ancient was the capital of Oman during the 6th and 7th century. One of the oldest cities of the Sultanate, this was once a center of education and art. Nizwa has been an important cross roads at the base of the Western hajar Mountains connecting Muscat, Buraimi, and the lower reaches of Dhofar. The falaj Daris of Nizwa is the largest single falaj in Oman and Provides the Surrounding Country. Side with much needed water for the plantation. The city, famous for its historical monuments, handicrafts and agricultural products, has an expansive Souq Showcasing a wonder full array of handicrafts – coffee pots, swords, leather goods, silverware, antiques, and household utensils. Nizwa fort, completed in the 1650’s, was the seat of power during the rule of the Al Ya’ ruba dynasty and is Oman’s most visited National monument.
The reconstructed Sultan Qaboos Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Oman . In the evening, the call of the muezzin fills the air calling the faithful to prayer. A few kilometres from Nizwa lies the mysterious town of bahla is the home of myths and legends that have carried through the centuries. Some people today still believe that magic is afoot in bahla and many Omanis are superstitious when it comes to talking about bahla. This little town is famous for its pottery. The old bahla fort with its 12km wall is the oldest fort in Oman. The fort is believed to have been built in pre-
Jebel Akhdar in Arabic means “Green Mountains” and this region of the most verdant outside of salalah and the Batinah Coast . To go there requires a 4-
Westrn hajar mountains: Beyond Nizwa, the southern flanks of the Western Hajar Mountains can be readily seen rising over 2000 metres above the surrounding countryside. Within these mountains, rugged networks of wadi channels have carved network of dramatic canyons and caver. The most fertile of these have been cultivated by the hardy shuwawis ,mountain people, Who have adapted to this harsh lifestyle under the tropic sun. At wadi Tanuf, the aver – flowing springs are tapped to produce a commercially popular brand drinking water. In Al Hamra, 400 years–old mud houses are still standing and occupied to this day. Out along the nearby wadi at hasat bin Sult Rock, ancient petroglyphs estimated to be over 3000 years old lie in wait. The dark reaches of the Falahi/ Hoti cave system await intrepid spelunkers. Hidden neatly in a crevasse on the mountainside lies Misfah al abreen a garden paradise of humble farmers and herders. To the west of Al Hamra is the road to jabel shams(mountain of the sun ), the tallest peak in Oman at 3010 metres. Here it is where you can find one of Oman’s Greatest natural wonders, the wadi nakhr Gorge. Inside the canyon, you can haggle with the local rug weavers, trek to the cliff dwelling along the canyon rim and visit remains of towns once occupied ages ago by Persian settlers. Rock climbers will want to test their mettle on the stony crags of jebel Misht while antiquarians will want to visit the mysterious Beehive Tombs of Bat.
WAHIBA SANDS: The great Wahiba sands are longitudinal dunes 200 km long and 100 km wide running south from the Eastern Hajars to the Arabian Sea. The dunes are 100-
MASIRAH ISLAND: Masirah is idyllic for those who really want to get away from it all.It is an island in the Indian ocean,20 kms off central Oman coast just south of the Wahiba Sands.Tha stark rocky landscape is rimmed with isolated beaches whose only visitors are the logger head turtles that come to nest there. Beachcombers may come across a variety of shell fish and other specimens of marine life. There is also evidence of early settlements
SALALAH: Nestled in the southern region of Oman, Salalah has the benefit of the annual Indian monsoon: locally known as the Khareef.This monsoon, which extends from early June to mid September,transforms the countryside in to a veritable garden with tumbling waterfalls and meandering streams.The Khareef season is a good time to visit Salalah.In July and August the government plays host for the annual Khareef Festival,a cultural highlight of the season. Salalah is steeped in myths and legends that date back to biblical times.In the Jebel Qara can be found the tomb of the Prophet Ayoub,better known as Job of the Old Testament.In Khawr Rhori lie the ruins of the palace reputed to be that of the Queen of Sheba.In the surrounding countryside on the flanks of the jebels grows the Boswellia sacra better known for the sap it produces:Frankincense. Frankincense, of course,is best known to Christians as one of the gifts of the Magi in Nativity story.In all probability the Frankincense that was a gift to the baby Jesus came from Oman as the Boswellia sacra tree grows nowhere else.For most of the year, The unspoiled beaches of Salalah are ideal for scuba diving,canoeing,sailing,jet skiing and diving.The marshy khawrs along the coast line are sanctuaries to a broad variety of migrating birds turning the region in to a bird watchers paradise.But during the summer Salalah is easily Oman’s coolest destination to visit during the Khareef with its crisp unpolluted air,cool misty clime,high rolling seas and leafy ambiance.Less than half an hour’s drive from Salalah is Ain Razat,a picnic spot with springs,hills,gardens and streams. Nearby is the equally resplendent Ain Sahanawt. Seventy Kilo-
Rising high above the coast is the Jebel Samham plateau, the highest point in Dhofar at 1800 meters.Here you can find the hanging valley of Wadi Dirbat which is impressive in full flood. Further into the jebels is Tawi Attir(the hole of the birds),a natural sink hole over 100 meters wide and 250 metres deep. Nestled in a hidden valley is the Baobab Forest with huge bulbous trees,one tree over 2000 years old and 30 feet in diameter at its base.