Introducing Sharqiya Region
This eastern-most corner 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.
A great introduction to this region is to follow the Qurayat–Sur coast road. This route ideally forms the first day of a two- or three-day circular tour, returning to Muscat via the sealed road through Al-Mintirib. When the new motorway linking Quarayat with Sur is complete (2008) it will be possible to use a saloon car. For now, a 4WD is needed to complete the circuit.
A trip to Sharqiya can easily be combined with a visit to the Dakhliyah Region without having to return to Muscat. It’s not possible, however, to get along the coast from Sur to Hijj (also known as Hay) in Al-Wusta Region without expert knowledge of sand-driving and navigation. Even tour company drivers regularly get stuck in the soft sand and unexpected high tides south of Al-Ashkara.
Last updated: Feb 17, 2009