A first timer’s
guide to Oman

The Hidden Gem of the Middle East

Just southwest to the United Arab Emirates and east of Yemen, Oman sits comfortably along the coastlines of the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman. With these luscious bodies of water at its surroundings.

Oman is one of the most welcoming and authentic societies in the Middle East, with rich history, you’ll find off-road adventures, winter sun and world renowned Arabian hospitality. We will  introduce what not to miss on your first trip to the sultanate.

Make the most of Oman

  • Visit the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque:

The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is one of the only mosques in Oman that allows non-Muslim visitors. The Mosque is embellished in beautiful, colorful mosaic patterns, which is certainly a breathtaking sight. Take your time to walk the halls and study the handcrafted details of the mosque. It is truly a one-of-a-kind piece of art.

  • Discover the deep blue of the Arabian Sea:

Oman also edges the sea for more than 3,000 kilometers, an epic coastline lapped by super-charged, nutrient-rich water feeding pristine coral reefs that are literally teeming with marine life. Take the plunge at coral-reef conservation site Daymaniyat Islands, or head to Al Fahal Island, otherwise known as Shark Island, a limestone rock island formation where you may be lucky enough to see whale sharks lazing in the deep blue.

  • Live like a royalty for a day:

Feel like royalty as you visit ancient noble forts and castles. Once a refuge from bandits and invaders from Persia and beyond, Oman’s forts are reminders of its hard-won independence. The Rustaq Loop takes in the pick of the bunch near Muscat, including the recently renovated Al Hazm Castle. Here an audio tour guides you through dungeons, secret tunnels and towers bristling with cannons, with a few scary-looking mannequins thrown into the mix.

  • Enjoy the Omani cuisine:

With influences from Indian, Persian, North African and Mediterranean cuisines, Omani food is a delicious fusion of spices, marinades and herbs. Chicken, lamb and rice are staples here, seasoned with ingredients like saffron, ginger and nutmeg, giving it flavor like no other! 

As a first-timer to Oman, these are some of the dishes that you need to try out.

  • Majboos: This dish is rice mixed with saffron cooked with spicy red or white meat. This dish is almost always served at special occasions like weddings and engagements.
    • Shuwa: Shuwa is a celebratory Omani dish that is only prepared on special occasions like Eid. 
  • Mashuai: Another delicious dish you will find in Oman is the mouth-watering Mashuai! It is a dish consisting of roasted kingfish and savory lemon rice.  

And let us not forget about dates  and Halwa which are a staple Omani food and are often served with Kahwa in Oman. Offering this dish is the national symbol of hospitality here. 

Experience Desert Safari: Oman’s name is closely associated with desert, an extension of the Bedouin lifestyle with its ancient associations of traditional culture and authentic original customs. Set on the Arabian Peninsula, Oman is as rich in natural beauty as in ancient heritage. From the green of wadis and endless rolling sand dunes to the impenetrably Rocky Mountains and ancient villages built into desert walls, Oman has much to offer. Your trip to Oman is incomplete if you do not venture out on the desert safari in the Wahiba Sands.

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