Experience Oman's best off-road adventures

T-Mag Thursday 02/August/2018 10:46 AM
By: Times News Service
Experience Oman's best off-road adventures

If you are one of those who search all travel and tourism websites just before a long holiday, it might be worth just sitting back for a bit and acknowledging what our very own Sultanate has to offer. There is something for adventure fanatics, beach chillers, nature admirers, and luxury lovers in this vast nation, which you can take full advantage of during the coming Eid holidays.

Oman is certainly an adrenaline junkie’s paradise. That explains why there are some really cool international events taking place in the country, including the kiteboard championship in Masirah, cliff diving competitions in the wadis, mountain biking challenges along the steep Wakan village, and many more. These events attract a number of international athletes from across the globe and make them appreciate the topographical gifts that this nation has. And now, perhaps it’s time for locals to take full advantage of them, too. It is unimaginable how much Oman’s deserts have to offer, given the vast stretches of varied layers and shades of brown sand. You can spend a calm day in the desert, enjoying the peace and serenity while watching the sun set behind the high dunes, or you can take your monster trucks and 4X4s and try your hand at some adrenaline-gushing dune bashing.

You can spend a day with Bedouins, the residents of the desert, and learn about their culture or try a camel staycation, making maximum use of the ship of the desert. If you are going for the Guide Oman package tour, you can get a taste of all of this in just two days. En route to Sharqiyah, explore the fortified villages of Al Minsfah and then enter the Sharqiyah Sands for nature’s roller coaster, where you can ride over the sand dunes, visit a Bedouin home, and ride a camel if you wish. You will be put up at the Sama Al Wasil Desert Camp, where you can enjoy the desert morning sunshine while you savour your breakfast overlooking the dunes. The green mountains of Jabal Akhdar have a lot to offer for adventure nuts. You can experience trekking and hiking at temperatures that are way cooler than Muscat and visit a number of historic locations and villages such as the Al Ayn village, where rose water is made and the process of rose water distillation takes place. However, if you intend on spending a day or two in Jabal Akhdar — which, by the way, makes more sense — it will be worth taking a reliable package.
One such package is the castles, forts, and mountains package by Guide Oman. The trip starts at Nizwa and takes you to Jabal Akhdar, where you will have ample time to relax and enjoy a mini staycation. Your journey will start with visits to famous forts, including the Nizwa Round House Fort and Jibreen Castle. You can take a trip to the souq, and if it is a weekend, you can even enjoy the cattle market. Guide Oman will put you up at the Sahab Hotel in Jabal Akhdar, where you can go to the rich fruit plantations and Birkat Al Mauz.

If you are more of the nature or ecology lover and if you still haven’t seen the various species of turtles coming to the beaches of Oman to hatch eggs, this is something you should definitely do during the coming holidays. Since Ras Al Hadd, which is just after Sur, is a popular spot, it can serve as the spot for a nice one- or two-day-long staycation. On the way to Turtle Beach Resort, you can stop at the Bimmah Sink Hole, the pebbles beach, and the Ancient City of Qalhat, followed by a scenic coastal drive along the Sur corniche and through the iconic Khor Al Batah bridge. It will be at night, however, that you will be able to witness the most soothing and beautiful experience of watching the turtles come ashore into the reserve, lay their eggs in a carefully and patiently planned way, and go back into the sea. All of this is part of the Guide Oman package, along with a second day during which you can have a morning swim at the private beach before departing to Sur, where you will see the ancient Omani dhows. [email protected]