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This Oman tour offers a unique cultural experience. From desert adventures and cultural experiences to snorkelling through coral reefs, this trip will create memories that will last a lifetime.
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 falaj irrigation channels, hidden beneath lush date palm plantations; from riding camels across the wild red sands of the Wahiba to snorkelling in the turquoise ocean of the protected Daymaniyat Islands to the green freshwater pools of the wadis; this is Oman.
(Available as a small group tour or private adventure)
Oman is one of the best kept secrets of the Middle East: Safe, relaxed, sleepy even, the small country that neighbours the oft-visited UAE is consistently overlooked by tourists, and we like it this way.
The Omani people are probably the friendliest people in the Gulf, and their country remains untouched in its pristine, rugged natural beauty. If you are looking for a unique cultural experience, in a safe environment with stunning scenery, with as much flavour as the local smoky coffee served with dates, Oman is the perfect escape.
An added bonus of this adventure holiday 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-coloured fish, or alternatively, you can just enjoy the boat ride, far from home on the salty sea.
3 star hotel
Following your arrival and settling into your wonderfully located hotel, your adventure begins with a Tour of Oman’s capital city, the port of Muscat; a classic mix of modern living amongst historical architecture, and surrounded by mountains and desert.
Enjoy the alleyways of Mutrah Souk and the breathtaking marble clad Grand Mosque with its 50m dome and famous Persian carpet. Bait al-Baranda Museum, housed in an attractive seafront 1930s residence, gives us a snapshot of Muscat's history (and pre-history), to frame our adventures to come.
Overnight: Al Nassem Hotel or similar
3 star hotel
We are headed for Wadi Shaab this morning (2hr drive) but it would be remiss not to stop off at Bimmah Sinkhole in Hawiyat Najm Park, popular with Omanis and visitors alike. We will wait to swim however, till we reach the lush interior or Wadi Shaab, with its lush vegetation and enticingly cool fresh water.
After a relaxing few hours we will drive on to the coastal town of Sur (1hr 20), to explore the Dhow boat yard where they still produce the traditional wooden vessels, as they have for centuries - there is plenty to see and it is a photographer's paradise!
Sur is where we will spend the night.
Overnight: Sur Plaza Hotel or similar
This morning we leave Sur and the coast behind us, heading up and over the mountainous interior to Wadi Bani Khalid (3hr drive). The journey itself is beautiful, and the destination is breathtaking. More green water pools to enjoy, plus we can wander further up the wadi to find our own corner of paradise.
The wonders of Wahiba sands await us this evening though so we will want to leave in time to catch the sunset over the desert - but first, time for traditional coffee with a local bedouin family.
Sama al Wasil Camp will be our home for tonight. It has all the amenities we need, and offers us wonderful seclusion from the outside world.
Overnight: Sama al Wasil Camp
3 star hotel
Getting up to see the sunrise over the picture-perfect, untouched sand dunes, stretching as far as the eye can see, is totally worth it. This morning, after breakfast we can choose to travel over the sand on 2 feet or 4, depending on your desire to take a camel ride!
The day will also include visiting the old village of Ibra, touring a local distillery and enjoying free time in Jabal Akhdar. Dinner is an intimate affair eating with a local family.
Overnight: Green View Hotel
3 star hotel
After a leisurely breakfast, you have the option of embarking on the "rose walk", a gentle, 1h30 hike taking you through three villages, passing from cultivated garden to terraced garden and magnificent views. The irrigations systems you see are UNESCO heritage.
Your next and final stop for the day is Nizwa, with its souq and impressive historic fort. There are lots of places to eat in Nizwa: enjoy an evening exploring the town.
Overnight: Al Diyar or similar
We drive up the steep winding roads to Jebel Shams (Mountains of the Sun) this morning (2hr drive). We enjoy some downtime relaxing in the cooler temperatures before a radial walk along the famous ‘balcony walk’ for magnificent views of the Grand Canyon of Arabia. The distance we cover is flexible but if we head to the abandoned village of Sap Bani Kamese, it will be a total of around 9km.
Upon our return, we drive to the stunning and traditional mountain village of Misfat Al Abryeen (1hr 35m). Set overlooking date plantations, and the ever-changing colours of the surrounding mountains, it is the perfect place to enjoy a coffee and dates with the locals, plus to grab a book, find a serene spot and relax. It’s all about unwinding in a mind-numbingly beautiful destination today, and we stay the night here, in Misfah Old House.
Overnight: Misfah Old House
3 star hotel
Our destination to be reached by this evening, is a return to the capital, but today is far more than a day of travel. Driving to Wadi Bani Auf (2hrs 15m), aka Snake Canyon, takes us via Al Hamra, along one of the most famous off-road journeys in the country, known for its spectacular views. We are not going to do any Wadi Bashing but will pause to wander and dip a toe / do some wading if we fancy it.
Just an hours drive takes us from Wadi Bani Auf to another charming and picturesque village, Bilad Sait where we can take a walk and enjoy lunch. Nestled at the base of the Hajar Mountain range, it is like something out of a fairy tale; typical of Arabian settlements in days gone by... We will meet the inhabitants for coffee and dates as well as a visit to a local home.
In the late afternoon we encounter more of the stunning scenery as we head back to Muscat (2.5hr drive). This time we are stying in Mysk Al Mouj Hotel in Muscat's marina. This will be our base for the next two nights.
Overnight: Mysk Al Mouj Hotel
3 star hotel
The archipelago of 9 protected Daymaniyat islands lie around 18km off the coast of Muscat. Lying totally within a Nature Reserve, they are home to an incredible abundance of marine and bird life. The crystal clear waters have ensured the areas popularity with divers and snorkelers, appreciating some of the most beautiful corals and fish that are to be found in the Middle East.
We take a speed boat over to one of the islands to explore, have a relaxed lunch and enjoy the marine life with some snorkelling.
After a wonderful day, we return to Muscat for a final group dinner.
Overnight: Mysk Al Mouj Hotel
We transfer you to the airport for flights out of Muscat. Leaving the beauty and serenity of Oman is going to feel all wrong but ‘normal life’ awaits you. Time to plan your next escape!
Single rooms are available on a first come, first served basis.
We will charge on a pro-rata basis if a single room is not available to book for part of the trip where it would have been possible.
Carbon Compensation is not the perfect solution, and it is important to first reduce our carbon emissions as much as we can, yet trees remain an excellent natural technology to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to slow global warming.
For every client and guide who attends a YellowWood Adventure, we donate £30 to our partner charity WeForest to plant 15 trees to (over) compensate for the carbon footprint of the tour.
We also invite our clients to match this with an optional additional £30 for another 15 trees to be planted to help compensate for the carbon footprint of their international flights.
WeForest run many tree planting and tree maintenance projects such as this seedling nursery in the Amhara region of Ethiopia, the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil and many other projects in other countries including Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania & India.
Click Here to find out more about their amazing projects around the world.
We fully believe in, and practice Responsible Tourism, using hotels run by locals. We put time and effort into building our relationship with them to ensure you have a 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 basic, 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 which is exciting and memorable, and reflects the countries we are visiting. This is adventure travel and on occasion the advertised services at a hotel (eg wifi, or hot showers!) may not be functional on our arrival. This tends to occur in the smaller, more remote hotels. Very rarely a hotel lets us down and we are required to find alternative suitable accommodation that might not be our first choice.
This trip involves hotel and guesthouse accommodation. The list below gives information on our first choice of accommodation for this adventure. Where hotels and refuges are fully booked or unavailable, we will use an alternative of a similar standard, and equally well situated. We will provide you with an accurate list of accommodation, with contact information to leave with relatives, prior to departure on your adventure.
Unless you have booked a single room (where they are available) and paid the single room supplement for those nights, you will be sharing a twin room with another client (of the same gender).
Supporting you on your holiday will be an experienced and knowledgeable local, English speaking, Omani guide. This ensures you access to information on the country and culture of Oman, as well as directly supporting local trade and tourism.
Your group will be any number from our minimum group size of 4, up to a maximum of 12 clients. This number works really well with the ratio of guides, and ensures the optimum level of service to you during your adventure.
We get clients booking alone, as couples and in small groups of friends. If you have a group of friends or family who are interested in having their own customised trip, then please let us know and we can cost it for you.
This itinerary is a Grade 3; 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 of out of this adventure, you need to be a regular walker and in good physical health.
Your YellowWood adventure starts at the airport in Muscat. We understand that arriving into an unfamiliar airport can be very daunting, so we aim to give you as much information her as possible to help you prepare.
Flights are not included in the cost of your holiday, and whilst we are happy to help advise you, responsibility for booking the correct flights rests with you. We recommend that you use a comparison tool such as www.momondo.co.uk or www.skyscanner.net when searching for flights.
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, check www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
Muscat International Airport (its slogan is “Gateway to Beauty & Opportunity”) is the main international airport in Oman, 32km from the city, and is modern and fully functioning.
On arrival at the hotel, you should head to reception where they can show you to your room.
The group will be arriving at different times. You will be meeting together for a welcome briefing and heading to a local restaurant for lunch before your City Tour begins.
Holiday insurance is essential for all YellowWood Adventures. Unfortunately anyone without insurance is not able to take part in the holiday, so please make sure you arrange cover. We recommend sorting your insurance when you book so that if you have problems during the run up to your holiday, and need to cancel, you are covered, particularly in the light of effects that the pandemic has had on travel.
Prior to the holiday, we will ask you to send us details of your insurer, policy number, 24 hr emergency assistance contact details and the name, address, and telephone numbers of your NOK or persons to be notified in the event of an emergency.
Your insurance needs to cover you for the following fairly standard inclusions:
We would also recommend that you have cover for the following optional items:
For information on Oman, such as climate, weather, language, social norms, food & drink etc, please have a read of our Country specificinformation.
Everything worked and worked well. Airport transfers smooth, convenient and worry-free. Accommodation was varied, often very nice indeed and far better than I expected as you drive off into this starkly beautiful country. Food is abundant and good - far too much of it for most of us. Sahid (our outstanding leader/driver) backed off some of the big meals at our request as the trip progressed and gave the group some options where he could. He made sure we had plenty of water and often stopped for Omani tea/coffee, cold drinks at times. Lots of great elements to the trip, all enjoyable. Though there is a fair amount of driving during the tour, it never seemed burdensome - the country is just too damned beautiful to enjoy in its rugged starkness. Every day was a highlight for me, no specific favourite.
Oman deserves all the superlatives it gets -magnificent scenery, safe, friendly environment, welcoming and engaging people. YellowWood delivers a winner on this trip! Kudos to all.
All adventures can be tailored as private bespoke trips.
Please contact us for more information:
+44 207 846 0197
Mongolia's Naadam Festival at Lake Khovsgol
Mongolia Tours - Cultural
Witness the spectacular Naadam festival in Mongolia on this two week adventure. Watch three classic sports - horse racing, archery and wrestling amidst a small local community set against the backdrop of Lake Khovsgol.
Select dates & add any extras or 'Add on' adventures. Complete our Booking Form
Check out our Covid-19 friendly booking conditions & check the box to agree to our Terms & Conditions.
'Make Booking': You will be redirected to secure WorldPay to make your deposit (£300/$400/person) payment (receipted), if booking >56 days before your adventure or full payment if 56 or <56 days before your adventure. Your monies are held securely by the Travel Trust Association.
Your booking will show as 'pending' in your YellowWood online account.
Enter booking information for all guests in your party.
We will be in touch as soon as we are able, to confirm your booking or discuss any availability limitations. Do not book transport/flights until we have emailed you to confirm your booking (receipt of your booking form is not confirmation). We will change the status of your final invoice from 'Pending Approval' to 'Outstanding', when it becomes payable online.
This payment is due 56 days before departure date (we send reminders).
Contact us with any questions about your adventure or booking.
+44 207 846 0197
To help you choose the right adventure for you, we have given each itinerary a grading that relates to the level of Walking / Trekking you will experience during the trip. This grading can be found on the Yellow map on the adventure page of the website.
All of our trips involve a level of general activity so are designed for people who are in good health, enjoy the outdoors, and have a taste for adventure and some level of fitness. As will be clear from our destinations, the climate (and altitude) may be different to that which you are used to, so please take this into consideration when choosing the most suitable holiday.
Please read our Adventure Itinerary & Essential Information for more information and don't hesitate to contact us if you would like to chat through whether you have found a suitable adventure for you.
You need to be in good physical health to enjoy your active holiday, but you don’t need to be an experienced hiker. These itineraries offer a mix of sightseeing and easier walking for around 2-4hrs a day, with the emphasis on sights and cultural experiences.
Walks will be well marked or on defined pathways, and often around sites of interest. The expected amount of descent/ascent will depend on the landscapes of the destination, but will not exceed 400m/day, and will often be much less. Walks are at low altitude (below 3000m).
You will not be required to carry more than a day sack with water and essentials. Ensure you are aware of the weather conditions likely in the destination you are visiting and have a pair of comfortable and worn in walking shoes/boots.
You need to have a good level of fitness and be a regular walker for these adventures, with ideally some trekking experience. You can expect to be walking for 3-6 hours per day, not including rest stops, normally on good trail paths but with some uneven surfaces at times.
You will not be required to carry more than a day sack. You may be walking in more challenging temperatures. You will generally be walking at low altitude (below 3000m) but may walk at altitudes up to 4000m. The amount of ascent could be up to 800m in a day but will frequently be less. You may walk on consecutive days.
Ensure you are aware of the weather conditions likely in the destination you are visiting and have suitable clothing for this adventure.
You need to have a good level of fitness with previous experience of trekking. Extra training before your trip will ensure that you get the most out of your adventure. Areas will be remote and terrain uneven.
Expect to walk for 5 – 8 hours a day, not including breaks, with some very steep ascents and descents. You will be walking at altitude (over 3000m but not higher than 5000m).
Ensure you are aware of the weather conditions likely in the destination you are visiting and have suitable equipment/clothing for this adventure (see the packing list for your adventure).
Please check individual itineraries for details of what you will need to be carrying with you.
Get in touch via our Enquiry form to check our availability, discuss the adventure and check we can meet your needs.
Complete our Enquiry Form; contact details, additional requirements (eg diet or health requirements) & questions you may have. Include as much information as you are able to, so we can help you with the detail you are looking for
Click on 'Send Enquiry' (receipted).
We will be in touch as soon as we are able, to answer your questions and help you plan your adventure.
+44 207 846 0197