Few countries can spark the imagination much like Oman. Located on the southeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula, Oman is a land of vast deserts and beautiful beaches. It’s also full of friendly towns and lush oases. Leafcanoer, blogfromtheblue, recently posted about their travels to Oman in the leaf, “A scenic drive along the coastal road from Muscat to Sur.” As any visitor to Oman can attest, one of the best ways to see the country is by car. Here are eight reasons why you should road trip through Oman.
The coastal scenery
Oman’s coastline stretches across over three thousand kilometers of beaches and rocky shores. There are a handful of beaches to visit and take in the scenery. Al Bustan Beach, located in Muscat, overlooks the mountains, while Dhofar beach has a number of lagoons filled with flamingos.
The surreal landscape
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Oman is also home to the largest expanse of desert in the Arabian Peninsula. This desert is known as “The Empty Quarter,” and stretches out over more than 400,000 kilometers of land. Other notable areas of desert include A’Sharqiyah Sands, as well as Ramlat Tawq, an area filled with beautiful sand dunes.
Scattered throughout Oman are small oases, known as wadi in Arabic. These areas consist of small patches of greenery surrounding fresh water. Driving through Oman, you are sure to come across a wadi during your travels. Wadis worth visiting are Wadi Shab and Wadi Tiwi, located near Muscat. Another wadi to visit is Bimmah Sinkhole, which is connected to the sea through an underground tunnel.
From the capital of Muscat, to the southern city of Salalah, taking a road trip through Oman lets you explore the vast diversity of towns throughout the country. The bustling city of Muscat is filled with white buildings, palm trees, and well-tended gardens. The coastal town of Sur, on the otherhand, has a more laid back beach town vibe.
One thing to keep in mind when embarking on a road trip through Oman is having a place to rest your head for the night. Aside from nature reserves, private establishments, and military bases, it’s easy to camp anywhere along the road. If you are interested in more specific camping areas, one such place is the A’Sharqiyah Sands, which stretches out over tenthousand kilometers, and is known to be one of the most beautiful camping areas in Oman.
Unlike traveling through a country by plane, taking a road trip through a country really gives you a closer glimpse of the people of that country. The majority of Omanis are of Arab descent, but there is also a large South Asian as well as African population within Oman.
The pace of travel
Traveling across a country by car forces you to slow down the pace. Rather than jetting from one city to another, you can take your time and enjoy the places that you come across on your travels. This gives you a chance to get to know the tribal culture of Oman, as well as its rich maritime history.
The lure of the open road
Oman’s roads have gone through a number of renovations the past few years. Many of the country’s roads are paved, which makes it easier for cars to traverse through the area and explore. Many travelers to Oman opt to road trip through the country, so you will undoubtedly be in good company.
Whether you are taking a short jaunt from Muscat to Sur, or traversing through the whole coast of Oman, there are plenty of reasons to take a road trip through Oman. To get you started on your own road trip, download the LeafCanoe app and check out blogfromtheblue’s leaf.