Places To Visit In Oman
Oman, a nation on the Arabian Peninsula, has terrain encompassing desert, riverbed oases and long coastlines on the Persian (Arabian) Gulf, Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman. Wahiba Sands is a region of dunes inhabited by Bedouins. The port capital, Muscat, is home to the massive, contemporary Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, and the old waterfront Muttrah quarter, with a labyrinthine souk and busy fish market.Popular destinations are Muscat, Salalah, Sur, Khasab, Nizwa & Sohar
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Muscat, Oman’s port capital, sits on the Gulf of Oman surrounded by mountains and desert. With history dating back to antiquity, it mixes high-rises and upscale shopping malls with clifftop landmarks such as the 16th-century Portuguese forts, Al Jalali and Mirani, looming over Muscat Harbor. Its modern, marble-clad Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, with 50m dome and prodigious Persian carpet, can accommodate 20,000 people.
Muscat’s old Muttrah quarter is known for its labyrinthine souk and busy fish market, as well as the Corniche waterfront promenade. To the east is the Sultan’s ceremonial residence, colorful Al Alam Palace, built in contemporary Islamic style. Nearby are numerous museums including the Bait Al Zubair, focusing on Omani culture and crafts. The Royal Opera House presents international performances, and Shatti al Qurum is a popular public beach. Just outside Muscat, lagoon reefs at Bandar Jissah and Bandar Khayran are diving destinations, as is Fahal Island, a striking limestone formation.
Salalah is the capital city of southern Oman's Dhofar province. It's known for its banana plantations, Arabian Sea beaches and waters teeming with sea life. The Khareef, an annual monsoon, transforms the desert terrain into a lush, green landscape and creates seasonal waterfalls. The Frankincense Land Museum, part of the Al Balid Archaeological Site, recounts the city’s maritime history and role in the spice trade.
The old city, Al Haffa, features a traditional souk (marketplace) as well as the flat, sandy Al Haffa Beach. Southwest of Salalah, Al Mughsayl Beach is ringed by cliffs and caves, including Marneef Cave, with its spurting blowholes created by water forcing its way through undersea vertical shafts. Coastal and offshore diving spots reveal sea caves, shipwrecks and coral reefs, as well as green turtles, parrotfish, moray eels and numerous whale species. Nearby Al Hallaniyat Island is a base for sport fishing and whale-watching.
Khasab is a city in an exclave of Oman bordering the United Arab Emirates. It is the local capital of the Musandam peninsula and has frequently been dubbed the "Norway of Arabia" because of its extensive fjord-like craggy inlets and desolate mountainscapes.
Sur is a capital city of Ash Sharqiyah Region, northeastern Oman, on the coast of the Gulf of Oman. It is 93 miles southeast of the Omani capital Muscat. Historically the city is known for being an important destination point for sailors. Today the sea still plays an important part of life in Sur
Nizwa is an ancient city in the Ad Dakhiliyah region of northern Oman. It sits on a plain characterized by seasonal rivers and palm plantations. It's known for Nizwa Fort, a castle with a huge cylindrical tower built in the 17th century to defend the city's position on a major trade route. The adjoining marketplace, Nizwa Souk, is lined with handicrafts stalls and silversmiths working in small shops.
West of the city, the hills around the town of Bahla have 2 other forts: Bahla Fort, an immense abode stronghold, and Jabreen Castle, a former palace with Islamic ceiling decorations. To the north, the Al Hajar mountain range encompasses Jebel Akhdar, an area defined by steep valleys, jagged rocks, waterfalls and cultivated terraces. Here, Oman's highest peak, Jebel Shams, overlooks a gorge with craggy cliff faces called Wadi Ghul. At the foot of the mountains, Al Hoota Cave contains many stalagmites and an underground lake with rare species of blind fish
Suhar is the capital and largest city of the Al Batinah North Governorate in the Sultanate of Oman. An ancient capital of the country that once served as an important Islamic port town, Suhar has also been credited as the mythical birthplace of Sinbad the Sailor. According to the 2010 census, Suhar's population was 140,006, making it Oman's fifth most-populated settlement. The development of the Sohar Industrial Port during the 2000s has transformed it into a major Omani industrial hub.