We all want a truly extraordinary holiday, but how often do we actually go on one? In Oman, incredible sights and experiences are an everyday occurrence – from glimpses into ancient worlds to super-modern hotels, via unparalleled natural beauty that’s ripe for your next big adventure. The capital, Muscat, is the beating heart of Oman, where you’ll find ancient forts and castles, sun-drenched shores and a backdrop of dramatic mountains.
Traditional Arabic buildings rub shoulders with contemporary architecture; cutting-edge yachts trace the wild, natural coastline; and lush green mangroves are just a short distance from huge expanses of desert. At its core, Muscat is a bustling Arabic city full of history and intrigue. The Muttrah souq is more than two centuries old and retains its buzzing authenticity, while the stunning Royal Opera House and Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque are more modern but no less spectacular.
Travel beyond this glittering city – as any smart visitor to Oman will do – and you’ll find a country where adventure is around every corner. The mountainous landscape of the Sultanate is ripe for exploring on foot, from a stroll along the Muttrah Corniche to a challenging hike through a wadi. These fertile natural valleys are a great place to spot Oman’s wildlife, including deer, the rare Arabian Tahr and wading birds. If you’d rather get about on two wheels than two legs, there’ plenty for cyclists of all standards. For some deeper thrills, why not head underground? Majilis Al Jinn is one of the biggest cave chambers in the world, with a capacity of 4 million cubic metres. If you’re brave enough (and skilled enough), you can base jump in, but most descend by rope.
The Al Hoota cave is no less impressive – just two hours from Muscat, it extends more than 5km underground. Away from dry land, Oman’s seas offer some of the finest diving on earth, with a vast array of features – including cliffs, reefs, wrecks and caves – and an extraordinary diversity of marine life. Above the surface, kitesurfing, sailing, and turtle and dolphin watching are all popular activities. While you could, of course, spend your whole time in Oman on the go, you’ll want to pause occasionally and soak up some of the tranquility and luxury that’s made it so popular with couples, families and honeymooners. World-class spas and an emerging golf culture will appeal to many, too. Whatever you see and do in Oman, expect to be amazed – in a place where you’ll find the extraordinary around every corner.