Did you know that Oman is a country full of nature and adventures? Learn more about the Sultanate of Oman and what to do there!
How about embarking on one or several adventures during a trip to Oman? For some types of travelers, the purest way to get to know a place is through experiences that perhaps could not be held elsewhere. After all, what is life if not the memories of our strongest emotions? In the Middle East, there is a paradise often forgotten by the media when talking about adventure travel. A place where paradisiacal beaches contrast with great mountains, vast deserts and jaw-dropping oases. Below, you will learn more about this country, and find the top 5 things to do in Oman, check it out!
If you want, go directly to the topic of interest:
- About Omã
- Travel insurance for Oman
- Things to do in Oman
- What NOT to do in Oman
- Where to stay in Oman
- What to pack
- Digital SIM Card
Oman, a country below the Persian Gulf that, despite being little talked about, borders with well-known flags in the region: the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Yemen.
Sultan of Oman
Unlike its neighbors, Oman (officially called the Sultanate of Oman) shares an unusual stability and neutrality in the region, thanks to the acclaimed Sultan Qaboos who, since consolidating power in 1977, has strived to make peace within the country (with tribal chiefs ) and its surroundings.
Within a decade, the young, inexperienced prince transformed himself into a peace-loving, economy-building emperor, taking advantage of the Gulf oil boom to advance his new campaign to modernize the nation.
After the death of the revolutionary monarch on January 10, 2020, the date on which the editor who speaks to you was present in the country’s capital, the national pain was overwhelming. Not only Oman, but several countries around the world, declared national mourning in respect for the legacy of the sultan who served as moderator of the region in several instances.
To get an idea of the size of his sphere of respect, both Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel, and the President of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, leaders of one of the places of greatest conflict in the world, paid their condolences and praised the achievements of the late Omani leader.
With the succession of the throne by his cousin and then Minister of Culture, Haitham bin Tariq, the country promises to continue on the same path stipulated by its previous ruler, with a focus on modernizing and expanding national tourism. Good news for those who don’t want to miss out on the wonders of Oman.
Where is Oman located
Find out where is Oman located on the map:
The Omani Rial (OMR) is the official currency of Oman. It is equivalent to approximately USD$2.60.
The capital of Oman is called Muscat and is located on the coast of the Gulf of Oman.
Muscat is the largest city in the country and has a population of over 1.4 million.
U.S and U.K citizens do not need a tourist visa to enter Oman for a stay up to 14 days. Check updated information and list of countries exempted from visa here.
Travel insurance for Oman
Although travel insurance is not a mandatory requirement to enter Oman, it is extremely important to ensure peace of mind and safety during your adventures. It’s worth remembering that Oman is not a cheap country and is far from home, imagine what the repatriation costs would be like? 🥵
With good insurance, you will have coverage and assistance in case of medical emergencies, accidents, and other unforeseen events during the trip. Check out below two insurance options that we recommend:
We currently use SafetyWing travel insurance due to its competitive price (in the case of long-term trips) and excellent coverage, including for adventure sports. See more information about the policy on the website.
Fox alerts🦊: Regardless of which insurance you choose, read the complete policy to avoid surprises. Each person may have different needs depending on the sporting activities or even in relation to their health conditions before the trip.
Things to do in Oman
Don’t know what to do in Oman? Check out 5 activities that can make you fall in love with this place and connect you a little more with its unique nature.
1- Riding a Quad in the Desert
Within the urban area of the capital Muscat there are very high dunes capable of providing a reasonable amount of excitement with an unparalleled view of the city. Especially at sunset. There are several types of quads with varying powers and traction for rent in some parts of the city.
2- Diving with Sharks in Crystal Clear Waters
Oman’s underwater fauna is very rich along the entire coast, favoring places for all types of diving. Places like Bandhar Khayran (pictured above) are home to fish, turtles and even sharks.
At the right time of year it is even possible to dive with the whale shark, the giant of the seas. If you are wondering about the safety of the activity, there is no room for much concern. The statistics of shark attacks in the area show that it is a very rare scenario, just don’t go poking your sharp-toothed colleagues to test the limits of friendship!
3- Water Climbing (Deep Water Solo)
In many places on the country’s coast, including the capital Muscat, there are several cliffs with varying types of rock and depth suitable for practicing one of the purest forms of climbing, Deep Water Solo. In this modality, the wall is climbed without safety equipment and the falls are cushioned by the water.
4- Trail in Oasis
One of the country’s differences in relation to its border counterparts are the magnificent oases locally called Wadis. The literal translation would be “dry riverbed” but the best-known Wadis have crystal clear water in large quantities, like those in the Tiwi region. In addition to being beautiful, they serve as home to many types of fish and are hidden among incredible scenes of Oman’s nature.
5- Sandboarding in Giant Dunes
One of my favorite places is the desert. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing the sun rise and set in this almost meditative environment that alternates between shades of pink and orange.
The Omani desert, also called the Wahiba Sands Desert, has a particularity that I haven’t seen in other places in the region: giant dunes and valleys. Unlike the Dubai desert with dunes of up to 7 meters, the sultan’s lands are home to dunes of up to 70 meters, guaranteed fun for those who like to be on a board.
What NOT to do in Oman
- Taking photos without asking people’s consent.
- Wearing low-cut or very short clothes.
- Walk in front of people who are praying.
- Women should not enter mosques without covering their heads.
- Wear camouflage clothing.
- Avoid displays of affection.
Where to stay in Oman
Check out the best accommodation deals in Muscat, Oman:
What to pack
Essential items to pack for Oman:
- Cap/hat and sunglasses;
- Natural sunscreen;
- Scarf – it’s always good to have one for women to cover their shoulders;
- Hiking shoes;
- Hydration backpack or reusable water bottle to stay hydrated;
Fox’s Tip 🦊: Columbia Sportswear is our inseparable adventure partner, due to its high quality and innovative technologies. It is our recommendation to accompany you on your trips too.
Digital SIM Card
Buying a cellphone eSIM (digital SIM card) in advance for an international trip will make your life easier. It allows you to stay connected, making communication easier, ordering an Uber right from the airport, having access to maps, and to useful information in real time. We recommend Airalo eSIM.
Are you prepared for these experiences? What are you most excited to do in Oman?
João Victor Villatoro