24 - 06 - 2019

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OMAN

Oman2

Individual tour-15 days

from 1.990 £ p/p  

 



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Muscat  - Wihiba Sands - Nizwa - Al Sawadi

The Sultanate of Oman, a small country in Southwest Asia, between the Persian Gulf and the Oman Sea, offers an extraordinary mixture of the Orient. Between oasis and fortified cities, Oman tries to respect the difficult balance between tradition and modernity. It offers a beautiful variety of scenery with its fishermen in the Indian Ocean, the wadis and their magnificent palm trees and breathtaking views from the djabals Akhdar and Hajjar with their canyons and cliffs.

Bordered by the United Arab Emirates in the northwest, Saudi Arabia in the west, and Yemen in the southwest, it is easy to imagine that a vast desert plain covers most of central Oman, except for the red and ochre mountain ranges along the north (Jebel Akhdar) and southeast coast, where the country's main cities are also located: the capital city Muscat, Matrah and Sur in the north, and Salalah in the south. This is also where most people live, the rest of the country is very thinly populated.

During past millennia Oman was covered by ocean. Fossilized shells exist in great numbers in areas of the desert up to 50 miles from the modern coastline.

THE PROGRAM DAY BY DAY

Day 1: Flight to Mascate

Arrival at the international airport of Mascate. Assistance at the airport and tranfert to your hotel.
Night at your hotel. 

 

Day 2: Mascate – Wadi Shab (205 km 4WD vehicle)

Departure in the morning to Sur. There's a stop in « Sink Hole » and in Quriyat (small fort, still in service with a lighthouse built in 1635). Along the route you'll see lots of fishing villages and beautiful creeks. Pick-nick at the sea and time to take a swim. In the afternoon a stop is made in Wadi Shab (in Arab: river between rocks; refreshing shadow and very clear green water). You continue forwards to Sur, with stops in Wadi Tiwi and Qalhat. The giant turtles of Ras Al Hadd are to be seen from October until May. These magnificent creatures come out of the sea to lay more than 200 eggs in the sand, between sunset and sunrise.
Accommodation and diner in Ras Al Hadd.

 

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Day 3: Sour- Wadi Bani Khalid – Wahiba Sands (120 km 4WD vehicle)

In the morning you visit the city of Sur, a boat fabric and the fish market. Departure to Wadi bani khalid, a palm tree region with tropical fruit plantations. You make a stop to relax and enjoy crystal clear lakes, where you can take a swim. Possibility to make a one hour trek.
Lunch (pick-nick) before you leave to the magic sands of Wahiba. A Bedouins tribe will welcome you.
BBQ and accommodation in the Safari campsite, extraordinary spot in the middle of the dessert and the dunes, which used to be a Bedouin campsite.

Day 4: Wahiba Sands – Ibra

Departure to Ibra where you can take a walk in the women's souk, every wednesday morning women can buy and sell their local productions of fruits, vegetables and craftwork. It is exclusively reserved for women who come mostly from the neighbour villages in traditional clothing.
After lunch, you'll go on a fabulous expedition in the famous sand dunes of Wahiba, where Bedouin populations live and raise camels and sheep. You can make a tour on a camel and visit the Bedouin village to drink a cup of coffee with them and discover their way of living.
Return to the campsite. Beautiful sunset on the sand dunes.
BBQ and accommodation on the campsite.

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Day 5: Wahiba Sands – Nizwa (170 km)

After breakfast, you'll leave on a 2 hours camel trek. Visit of a Bedouin village with the possibility to buy some of their craftwork.
You'll also experience a 4WD tour in the dunes before returning to Nizwa for lunch.
In the afternoon you'll visit the traditional souk of Nizwa. 
Sunset at the bar of the swimming pool. 
Accommodation and diner in your hotel.

Day 6: Nizwa – Al Jabal Al Akhdar

In the morning discovery of the Djabal Shams (highest mountain of Oman with 3000 m). Visit of Tanauf, this village is situated on the border of gorges, hollowed out in the massif. Visit of Wadi Auf. Pick-nick lunch bought in a local restaurant and visit of the village of Misfat El Abreen, a magnificent traditional village with its palm tree plantation, which is a very famous touristic destination. Accommodation and diner in your hotel in Al Jabel Al Akhdar.

Day 7: Nizwa – Rustaq – Nakhal – Al Sawadi

After a visit of Al Jabel Al Akhdar you'll hit the road towards Rustaq via Al Hamra. This road leaves from the top of the mountain downwards and finishes in a trail. More than 1.000 meters difference of level with canyons changing into vast plains and where your 4WD is very useful. You'll have a pick-nick lunch in the shadow of big trees in the dried bed of a wadi.
Coming out of the valley you'll discover a hospital, in the middle of nowhere, without an access road: when the trail is not accessible, every transport is done by helicopter …
You'll continue to Nakhl, famous thermal station in the Antiquity. Possibility to swim in a natural warm water pool. Visit of the prestigious fort of Nakhl. At the end of the day you'll arrive in Al Sawadi at the coast.
Accommodation and diner in your hotel in Al Sawadi.

Day 8: Al Sawadi

Possibility to visit the White Fort in the town of Sohar, or to spend a day on the beach to relax.
Accommodation and diner in your hotel in Al Sawadi.

Day 9: Al Sawadi – Mascate

In the morning visit of the fort of Barka, before heading towards Mascate.
In the afternoon you can go snorkelling and visit the islands along the coast.
Accommodation in your hotel.

Day 10: Mascate

Guided tour of the city of Mascate, a living example of a harmonious marriage between old traditions and modernism.
Your day starts with a visit of the big mosque, the fish market and the traditional souk of Mattrah. You'll pass by the 'Bustan Palace', built for the big meetings of the Sultan and the yearly conferences with the oil states of the Gulf. You'll also stop at the fascinating 'Al Alam Palace', the Sultan's palace, where you can take some pictures. Lunch in a local restaurant.
Afternoon off.
Accommodation in your hotel.

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Day 11: Mascate/ Salalah

In the morning, visit of the big modern mosque of Sultan Qaboos, the biggest of the country where the floor is covered by the most important Persian carpet of the world (70m x 60m). Before leaving to the airport you can visit the national museum with two important sections; construction of forts and towers and the maritime heritage of the country.
Transfer to the airport and flight to the Dhofar region in the extreme south of the country, bordered by Yemen. Spectacular over flight of the desert, an impressive sand sea. Transfer to your hotel.
Accommodation and diner in your hotel.

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Day 12: Salalah

In the morning visit of a small museum which shows photos of the 'desert of the deserts' before heading up north to the gates of the terrible desert of Roub al-Khali. You'll make a stop at the tomb of Job, venerated by Christians, Jews and Muslims for his faith despite of his sufferings. Lunch in a Bedouin camp and visit of their village. Continue to Nagaif where incense trees grow, this is the wealth of this region. Back to Salalah.
Accommodation in your hotel.

Day 13: Salalah

Sightseeing in the Salalah region, with a visit to Mirbat, a small fishermen's village with white painted houses contrasting with the green dome of the mosque. You'll also visit a fort and the ruins of Soumhouram in the Khor Raouri bay. Return to Salalah passing through the djebel Samhan. You'll make a stop at the Tawi Afayr abyss and the bird sanctuary of Khor or Taqah.
Accommodation and diner in your hotel.

Day 14: Salalah/ Mascate

Visit of the city of Salalah in the morning, the Sultan's palace, the mosque and the old city ruins of Al-Balid.
In the afternoon return by plane to Mascate.
Accommodation in your hotel.

Day 15: Departure back home

Time off in Mascate, before transfer to the airport and flight home. 

PRICE of this tour in OMAN: 1.990 £ p/p
Tour for 8 persons minimum

In this price included:
Accommodation, double room base, in 3, 4 and 5* hotels.
Cold water at your disposal during the whole tour.
Airport transfers and visits in an air-conditioned 4WD with a chauffeur/guide.
Meals as mentioned in the program.
Pick-nick and Barbeque, as mentioned in the program.
Full pension, except for Muscat and Salalah where there will be only breakfast included.

NOT in the price included:
Personal expenses and tips.
Visa fees of 25€.
The international flight.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION

Climat
There are only two seasons: a very hot Summer, and a fresh season from October to April.

Flight time: about 10 hours.

Time difference: +2 hours in Summer, + 3 in Winter

Custom formalities
Stay less than 3 months: passport, valid until 6 months after the return date.
European citizens need a visa, but you can get it at the airport on arrival.

Money
Monetary Unit:
 The local money is the Oman Rial (OMR) - 100 OMR = 162 GBP (05-2012)
It is divided into 1000 Baizas. There are bills of 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5 Rials.
Cash dispensers: available in the bigger cities.

Language: Arab is the offical language, but English is also widely spoken.

Health
- No specific contra-indications.
- Always consult your doctor before leaving.

This is an example, you can adapt it to you own needs and wishes
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