Just a short hop from the UAE, a world of green, lush, verdant scenery awaits visitors in Salalah, Oman.
HOW TO GET THERE
Direct flights are available out of Dubai via flydubai and Oman Air, landing in Salalah within two hours. No non-stop flights are offered from Abu Dhabi. It is possible to drive to Salalah, but it will take around 12 hours from the UAE and the scenery has been described as ‘repetitive.’ If this is your preferred option, travel with friends and make a road trip out of it.
If you are a UAE resident, you qualify for an Oman e-visa. It takes around 15 minutes to apply and you will have the document within 12 hours. Visit: https://www.ivisa.com/
AED1 = OMR0.10
Weather and Climate
Salalah has a hot desert climate and is very cloudy and foggy during the monsoon months of July and August, despite the relatively low rainfall. Monsoon season occurs during autumn, transforming Salalah’s brown landscape to a lush greenery.
WHERE TO GO AND WHAT TO DO
Visit Wadi Darbat
Regardless of whether it is monsoon season, Wadi Darbat is a must-see location in Salalah. Young explorers will love investigating this peaceful spot of unspoiled nature, and they can even paddle board across the river. Visitors will also get the opportunity to see the camels up close, and it’s a great spot for bird watching and landscape photography.
Watch for water at the blow holes
Located approximately 30 minutes west of Salalah, it is well worth paying a visit to Marneef Cave to see the blow holes. The drive reveals some amazing scenery and once you arrive, there is normally enough parking. The blow holes are a short five-minute walk with breathtaking views of the cliffs and ocean along the way. There is also a small café close to the car park that serves refreshments, which is a nice way to round off the trip before making your way back.
Experience Sultan Qaboos Mosque
A unique experience to see the blending of local tradition and architecture, Sultan Qaboos Mosque is worth visiting. Visitors are welcome except on Fridays and during prayer time. It is also possible to take a guided tour to learn more about the mosque.
Relax at Al Fizayah Beach
Al Fizayah beach is around 45 minutes away from Salalah city and visitors can enjoy almost three kilometres of untouched, white sand, crystal clear water, and undisturbed peace. There are no shops nearby, so visitors are encouraged to pack their own food and water.
FOOD TO TRY
Majboos is a traditional dish that consists of rice, usually basmati, vegetables, meat, or chicken and a variety of spices. It can also be served with either yoghurt or green salad, traditional bread, and tomato sauce.
Meshkak, more popularly known as kebab, is beef, mutton, or chicken that is marinated in a variety of spices and grilled on sticks. It is served with Omani bread.
Kahwa and halwa
Meaning ‘coffee’ in Arabic, kahwa is usually mixed with cardamom powder and is an essential part of Omani hospitality, usually served with the Omani halwa (dessert). Halwa is also the name given to the most famous Omani sweet. It is thicker than custard and contains sugar, honey, rose water, eggs, several Omani spices, and nuts. It is usually served with kahwa and dates.