For experiencing a rich tapestry of colors, abundant wildlife, extremes of the windswept desert, and lush oasis, this Oman cultural tour is not to be missed!
From the incense-filled souks of Muscat to turtle watching on golden sandy beaches; from the sun-bleached mountains of Jebel Shams to the tinkling of water along ancient irrigation channels; from riding camels across the wild red sands to snorkeling in the turquoise ocean… this is Oman.
Oman is one of the best-kept secrets of the Middle East: Safe, relaxed, sleepy even. The small country that neighbors the oft-visited United Arab Emirates (UAE) is consistently overlooked by tourists, and we like it this way. The Omani people are among the friendliest people in the Gulf, and their country remains untouched in its pristine, rugged natural beauty. If you are looking for a unique experience, in a safe environment with stunning scenery, with as much flavor as the local smoky coffee served with dates, Oman is the perfect escape.
An added bonus of this sustainable, small-group adventure is that you get to experience the other-worldly and remote Daymaniyat Islands, surrounded by coral reefs. Protected as a nature reserve since 1996, the islands provide an important nesting site for green turtles and a wide range of migratory birds including the increasingly rare sooty falcon. You will have the opportunity to snorkel in the crystal waters amidst the many species of multi-colored fish, or alternatively, you can just enjoy the boat ride, far from home on the salty sea.
The Sultanate of Oman sits on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula, neighbor to Yemen and the UAE. A fascinating history has seen Oman under the influence of the Portuguese, Ottoman Turks, Persians, and the British during the 19th and early 20th century…which today lends itself to an incredible country for a cultural adventure!
Travelers to Oman will find a peaceful haven with a rich natural environment filled with diverse flora and fauna, accompanied by the true hospitality and charm of the Omani.
Seasonal Notes: Oman has a subtropical, dry, hot desert climate with low annual rainfall, high temperatures in summer, and a large difference between maximum and minimum temperatures, especially inland. Summers last from June to September. These months are long and hot (temperatures can reach as high as 46°C / 115°F) and have very little rainfall. Oman has warm winters; between October and March, it is generally pleasant and cool. April and May are a little warmer but still pleasant. These are generally felt to be the best times to visit. Nighttime is cooler and temperatures could be as low as 13-17 °C / 55-63°F.
This is a set itinerary but if would like to change the dates, privatize the trip, or customize in some way, contact Yugen Earthside for more information.
Day 1: Muscat [Oman] (arrival day)
Day 2: Wadi Shab & Ras Al Jins: Bimmah Sinkhole, lush Wadi Shab & coastal Sur
Day 3: Wadi Bani Khalid & Wahiba Sands desert camp: Cool green pools of Wadi Bani Khalid & Wahiba Sands eco desert lodge
Day 4: Wahiba Sands & Nizwa: Explore sand dunes of Wahiba & ancient Nizwa
Day 5: Nizwa & Jebel Shams: Nizwa fort & Jebel Shams (Mountains of the Sun)
Day 6: Jebel Shams & Misfat Al Abyreen: Balcony walk (9km | 5.6 miles) in Jebel Shams & mountain village of Misfat Al Abryeen
Day 7: Snake Canyon, Bilad Sait & Muscat: Drive Snake Canyon, mountain settlement of Bilad Sait & Muscat
Day 8: Daymaniyat Islands: boat tour
Day 9: Muscat (departure day)
Our View on Sustainable Travel
All of our adventures are small-group (no more than 12 travelers) and we focus on unique destinations where we can have meaningful cultural connections as well as exposure to precious natural ecosystems.
Tourism Declares a Climate Emergency
We have joined the Tourism Declares a National Emergency coalition.
We provide travelers with information regarding language, religion, PDA, clothing, alcohol, haggling, garbage disposal, and more so that we can be as courteous and respectful as possible during our visit.
We donate 35 GBP/client ($48 USD, 40 EUR) using international air travel to the charity WeForest, to plant & maintain 15 trees in the fight against global deforestation.
Tap water is generally considered safe to drink but most Omanis drink the widely available bottled water. Whilst bottled water is always safe and is widely available on your holiday, we are conscious of the negative effects of Single-Use Plastics. We highly recommend the use of a filtration water bottle. Clients booking this tour will be eligible to purchase a reusable water filtration bottle (Pure Hydratation's "Aquapure Traveller") for about 50% off.
We fully believe in, and practice, Responsible Tourism and using hotels run by locals. We put time and effort into building our relationship with them to ensure you have a great trip. We choose hotels based on cleanliness, comfort, safety, proximity to our route (to avoid unnecessary extra travel), and a warm client welcome, as well as reliability in their service to us. Some hotels will be simple and in modern buildings and/or in towns. Wherever we can, we will choose smaller more characterful, individual hotels, but in areas where tourism is still developing, this may not be available. An aspect of our adventures is to escape the ‘trappings’ of modern Western lifestyles and to experience new things that are exciting, memorable, and reflect the countries we are visiting.
Use the Google map to orient yourself about where in the world this trip is. The location indicates the starting point for this trip.
A specific route map is included in the downloadable detailed itinerary.
What happens if we cancel your trip?
If we are forced to cancel your trip because it is not viable (due to COVID-related travel restrictions), or if we cannot manage your health and safety on a particular itinerary, or because we do not have the numbers to reach our minimum (4 travelers), then we will ask you to select one of the following options:
What happens if you cancel your trip?
To provide you with as much flexibility as possible in these changing times, if you cancel your trip up to 30 days before your adventure, you can:
This trip takes place on the following dates. Book for when you feel comfortable and safe to travel.
Be sure you have traveler's insurance.
You must be fully vaccinated and boosted. You may need a negative test result prior to arriving. You should also have both a mask and hand sanitizer with you at all times.
Our trips are only for small groups (privatization possible) and are focused on outdoor activities in off-the-beaten-track areas.
You will need to complete a confidential health screening questionnaire, and take your temperature each morning to check for fever in the 10 days before your trip.
We'll encourage outdoor eating where possible, minimize food sharing, and only visit restaurants complying with COVID protocols.
We'll only stay at hotels complying with COVID protocols.
Q: What does the Physical Rating of "Average" mean?
A: This itinerary is an "Entry Level" adventure. Some days involve short walks of up to 3 hours, but the distances are optional. Depending on which departure you are on, it could involve walking in the heat, over some uneven terrain but at a leisurely pace / the natural pace of the group. However, to get the most out of this adventure, you need to be a regular walker and in good physical health.
Q: What are the accommodations like?
A: We fully believe in, and practice, Responsible Tourism and using hotels run by locals. We stay at a combination of hotels and guesthouses, along with 1 night spent camping in a desert eco-lodge. More information is provided upon booking.
Duration: This cultural tour lasts for 9 days (8 nights).
Meals: 8 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 4 Dinners.
Contact us to either book a trip or ask a question. Read more about Booking with Us.
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