Arabian sights: road-tripping in Oman
Oman is hot right now. Not as in boiling (although it can be at the height of summer when the mercury touches 40C); hot as in 'of the moment'...
Places in Oman
Muscat is a port the like of which cannot be found in the whole world where there is business and good things that cannot be found elsewhere. Ahmed bin Majid al-Najdi As the great Arab navigator Ahmed bin Majid al-Najdi recognised in 1490 AD, Muscat, even to this day, has a character quite different from neighbouring capitals.
Separated from the rest of Oman by the east coast of the UAE, and guarding the southern side of the strategically important Strait of Hormuz, the Musandam Peninsula is dubbed the ‘Norway of Arabia’ for its beautiful khors (rocky inlets), small villages and dramatic, mountain-hugging roads.
The capital of the province is small but far from sleepy. Its souq resounds to a babble of different languages, including Kumzari (a compound language of Arabic, Farsi, English, Hindi and Portuguese), and its harbour bursts with activity, much of it involving the smuggling of US cigarettes to Iran in return for goats.
This easternmost region of the Arabian Peninsula holds some of Oman’s main attractions, including beautiful beaches, spectacular wadis, turtle-nesting sites and the strawberry blond Sharqiya sand dunes. As many of the sites of interest lie en route rather than in the towns, it’s worth having your own vehicle, although tours cover the whole area.
Tours and activities
Tips and articles
Oman’s underground playgrounds
Stretching from the lunar-like Hajar Mountains in the north to lush and temperate city of Salalah in the south, the Sultanate of Oman -- with its year-round sunshine and a stable economy -- is one of the lesser-known ...
Ask Lonely Planet: where can I spend New Year in the sun?
Lonely Planet’s experts are always eager to inspire a travel adventure. In this extract from December’s Lonely Planet Magazine, our travel brains advise reader Sarah Clay on where to go for a sunny New Year city break...
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Oman, UAE & Arabian Peninsula - Understand Oman, UAE, Arabian Peninsula & Survival Guide (Chapter)
All the info you need on everything from history, Islam, culture and safety to flights, public transport, climate, money, the internet...you name it. Get hints on desert driving and tips for women travellers, ...