Oman Vacation Trips
Oman Economy - Tourism
Island Trips Middle East offers travel tips and information for top travel places and best destinations. We feature links, resources and large selection of budget airlines, chartered planes, sea cruises, ferries, travel agencies, land transports and attractions including beaches, medical tourism, retirement homes, historical and pilgrimage tours.
Oman is known for its popular tourist attractions. Wadis, deserts, beaches, and mountains are areas which make Oman unique to its neighboring GCC nations (Wadis in particular). With a coastline of 1700 km, Oman offers some of the cleanest, most stunning beaches a visitor could hope to see. Few beaches are private, except some attached to the beach resort hotels, or those adjoining military or official property. Weekend picnics and barbecues are popular on the beach. Many coves are perfect for snorkelling and with fairly gentle shelves, are good for children.
Wadis are green, lush oases of palm trees, grasses, and flowering. Some wadis have year-round running water, with deep, cool pools in which it is quite safe to swim if the currents are slow.Falaj (pl. aflaaj) means a system for the distribution of water and is commonly used to describe the irrigation channel system downstream of the water's source.Some aflaaj in Oman were built more than 1,500 years ago, whilst others were built at the beginning of the 20th century. The genius of the Omani builders is evident in the way they tunnelled into the ground to a depth of dozens of metres in order to gain access to the groundwater. These channels were truly a miracle of engineering at a time when mechanical equipment was not available.
Forts and Castles are Oman's most striking cultural landmarks and, together with its towers and city walls, they have historically been used as defensive bastions or look-out points. Forts were often the seats of administrative and judicial authority. There are over 500 forts, castles and towers in Oman which has a coastline of 1,700 km, so they were needed to protect it from potential invaders. The architectural styles vary, being determined by the architects who built them or the periods in which they were built.
The traditional Arabic market place is called the souq and these are found in many of the towns throughout the Sultanate. One of the oldest preserved souqs in Oman is in Muttrah, on the Corniche. Gold and silver jewellery is found in abundance as well as numerous wooden carvings, ornaments and spices. Muttrah souq is a maze of pathways leading in and out of each other. 'Household' goods make up the bulk of the souq, but browsing through some of the smaller shops may result in a lucky find. Bargaining is a must, however. Gold and silver are well priced and mainly sold by weight. Good buys are silver khanjars (the traditional Omani dagger, worn by men) and incense burners. Today,the Capital area has a number of shopping malls, mainly situated in Qurum, but in recent times, spreading to the Al Khuwair area, which house a variety of shops, ranging from boutiques to chain stores. The largest mall in the country is the Muscat City Centre.
Other popular tourist activities include sand skiing in the desert, Scuba Diving, Rock Climbing/Trekking, Surfing & Sailing, Cave Exploration and Bull Fight/Camel Race.The Muscat Festival is usually held at the beginning of every year. During this event, traditional dances are held, temporary theme parks open, and concerts take place. Another popular event is The Khareef Festival, which is similar to Muscat Festival; however it is held in August in Salalah, Dhofar. During this latter event, mountains are packed as a result of the cool breeze weather during that period of time which rarely occurs in Muscat.
I still make sure to go, at least once every year, to a country where things cannot be taken for granted, and where there is either too much law and order or too little. Christopher Hitchens
“Everyone carries his own inch rule of taste, and amuses himself by applying it, triumphantly, wherever he travels. Henry Adams