Oman is a stunning gem nestled along the coast of the Arabian Peninsula, exuding grace and beauty. If you’re planning on traveling to Oman, my guide will give you an insider’s view of the top experiences that await you there!
You’ll discover everything from the best time to visit this incredible destination to the dress code for vacationing in Oman.
After spending a week exploring every nook and cranny of this stunning country myself, I’ve gathered a wealth of insights that will help make your trip unforgettable – so sit back and let me tell you all about visiting Oman through my ultimate travel guide!
Check out these things you need to know when visiting Oman.
Best time to travel to Oman
Oman is truly a weather paradise compared to its Gulf neighbors. Although some places can get quite hot in the summer, there are many areas such as Jebel Akhdar and Jebel Shams where you’ll enjoy pleasant temperatures all year round. If you’re planning to visit Salahla, it’s best to go during the peak of the monsoon season for an unforgettable experience.
To help you plan your trip, we’ve put together this guide that breaks down each season with recommendations for the best places to visit at different times of the year.
September to April is considered high season in Oman, with temperatures ranging from 13 C to 35 C. The months between September and November offer great opportunities for turtle spotting at Ras Al Jinz or Raz Al Had beaches, while January-February tend to have cooler temperatures but occasional unpredictable showers; so be sure to book early if traveling around New Year’s time!
In addition, Salalah’s coast offers stunning views during the monsoon, which occurs during these months, as well as beautiful apricot harvests in May, followed by olive blossoming in March!
June to August marks the peak of summer in most regions, making them scorching hot, except for those located higher up such as Jebel Shams or Akhdar Mountains, however domestic tourists flock here too, so booking ahead is advised, especially if heading over to Salalah, where rainfall provides relief amidst heat waves!
Does Oman have a dresscode?
In Oman, both men and women follow a modest dress code. Men typically wear an A-line garment called a dishdasha, while women cover themselves with an abaya and hijab. If you’re planning to visit another country like Oman, where beaches and wadis are popular attractions, it’s important to be aware of local dress codes. However, I found conflicting information online when planning my trip, so I reached out to some friends who live in Muscat for clarification on what was appropriate attire during my visit – better safe than sorry!
How should I dress when I am traveling to Oman?
When you’re in public places like beaches, malls, restaurants, or even remote areas, it’s important to dress modestly. This means avoiding sleeveless tops and anything that falls below the knee.
If you are planning to take a dip in one of Oman’s beautiful wadis, swimsuits are allowed – just remember to cover up when you leave the water. Bikinis are not recommended for swimming in the Bimmah sinkhole, so opt for shorts and a t-shirt or swimsuit instead. On weekends, most wadis tend to be crowded with locals, so dress conservatively.
There is no specific dress code at the resorts, so bikinis/swimsuits can be worn freely on private beaches.
Keep in mind that if you’re visiting the Sultan Qaboos Mosque, it’s mandatory to cover your head and wear non-transparent clothing.
Why should you follow the dressing code in Oman?
The people of Oman are incredibly welcoming and friendly, so don’t worry too much about what you’re wearing. They may politely ask you to follow their dress code, but it’s always a good idea to respect the customs of your host country when traveling. To be safe, avoid wearing anything that exposes too much skin in public areas and opt for appropriate swimwear at resorts or in Wadi Shab.
Internet access in Oman
Local SIM card in Oman
When you arrive in Oman, you’ll have two main options for phone service: Oredoo and Omantel. Both have shops at the airport where a representative will activate your SIM card before handing it over to you. Both companies offer similar packages at comparable prices, but I personally chose Omantel.
I went with their 7-day package, which cost me OMR 5 (Rs 1000 or $13) and included an impressive amount of data – specifically 7GB +1GB of direct media – as well as some calling minutes that could be used within Oman or internationally to India, Bangladesh and Pakistan.
The activation process was quick; it only took a few minutes! Overall my experience has been great so far using this service while traveling around Oman. If you are interested, please see all the plans offered by Omantel below!
eSIM Card by Travel Dudes
No need to worry about losing or misplacing your physical SIM cards anymore. Simply download the eSIM profile onto your device and you’re good to go, hassle-free. Switch between carriers without physically swapping out SIMs too!
Get ready for a seamless experience as Travel Dudes offers easy data plan purchases that cater specifically to what suits you best – budget-wise and coverage-wise.
More info: The Benefits of an eSIM Card When Traveling
Wi-Fi in Oman
While most hostels provide Wi-Fi access along with many malls & cafes throughout the country offering free connections too cabs drivers are also happy sharing theirs if needed. However having your own working eSIM is always recommended especially when heading into remote areas!
Getting around Oman
When traveling to Oman, most people only visit Muscat. If that’s the case for you, public taxis will suffice. However, if you want to explore, it’s best to rent a self-drive car or hire a taxi with a driver, as local buses are not well connected and do not run frequently.
Hiring a self-drive car
Get ready for an amazing road trip experience in Oman! The roads are smooth and locals are friendly while the landscape is breathtakingly beautiful – all ingredients of an unforgettable journey. To top it off fuel prices won’t break the bank either! You can choose from basic cars, 4WDs or even RVs at affordable rates offered by many local companies.
Hire a taxi with a driver
I was really excited to explore Oman, but I decided it would be best to hire a taxi with a driver. There were two main reasons for this decision: firstly, driving in Oman is on the left side of the road and I didn’t feel confident doing so. Secondly, some areas like the desert and Jebel Akhdar require 4WD vehicles, which again made me hesitant to drive myself.
The great thing about hiring a guide is that you can either provide them with your own itinerary or ask them to create one for you. If you book through an agent, they will arrange everything including your hotel accommodations. Personally, I found my amazing guide by word of mouth – he made all my hotel bookings himself and was always available by phone.
These guides charge between OMR 80-120 per day depending on the route you choose, but trust me when I say it’s worth every penny! Check out a few options on TripAdvisor – make sure to read the reviews!
How to get around Muscat
My main concern when visiting Muscat was transportation. I didn’t want to spend a fortune on hiring a full-time taxi, especially for short distances around the city, which can cost upwards of OMR 60. Instead, I opted for the convenience and affordability of using O-Taxi.
When you arrive at the airport, you have three options: take an airport taxi, take the public bus, or book with O-Taxi. While taking the public bus is cheaper, it can be inconvenient as you have to find the route closest to your hotel and then walk from where the bus drops off passengers – not ideal if you have luggage! Both the airport taxi and o-taxi are metered, but choosing o-taxi will save you money in comparison.
I also found myself relying on o-taxi throughout my stay in Muscat – all thanks to their easy-to-use app available for download along with kiosks conveniently located in malls & airports making booking even easier! There were other local taxis that operated on a sharing basis (pay per seat), so unless otherwise specified, they would pick up additional passengers along the way!
One thing worth noting though; avoid Mahraba Taxi service as they are not metered resulting in double/triple fares compared to what you pay when booking through reliable services like o-Taxi – trust me this tip saved me some serious cash during my trip!
Food in Oman
For those who know me, I try my best to maintain a vegan diet. However, in some countries where that’s not possible, I opt for vegetarian options instead. Fortunately, Oman was a breeze when it came to finding food that met my dietary needs. Most places had at least one or two vegetarian dishes, and were even willing to whip something up if needed.
During my time in Muscat, I also stumbled upon a number of Indian restaurants that offered a wide variety of delicious vegetarian dishes – yum! Even when exploring more remote areas such as the Wahiba Sands or Ras Al Jinz, the establishments weren’t shy about accommodating any requests for custom dishes.
It’s worth mentioning that since Oman has such a large Indian population, the owners/chefs are often from India themselves, making communication easier than ever!
All in all, eating out wasn’t as daunting as expected thanks to all these great finds along the way 🙂
Top things to do in Oman
If you’re looking for a fun and unique adventure, Oman has it all. You can go snorkeling and catch a glimpse of playful dolphins at Dimaniyat Island, or take a stroll through the charming mud village and explore its winding alleyways. For an adrenaline rush, try dune bashing followed by a sunset cruise in one of our desert camps.
If nature is more your thing, then exploring the wadis should be at the top of your list – we have so many beautiful ones just waiting to be discovered! And don’t forget to visit the Sultan Qaboos Mosque, whose stunning architecture will leave you in awe.
For those who love shopping (who doesn’t?), Muttrah Souq or Nizwa Souq are great places to find souvenirs while immersing yourself in Omani culture. Speaking of which, if you’re interested in learning about local customs, head over to Nizwa Fort for an up-close look at traditional Omani life.
In conclusion, Oman is a beautiful country that offers a unique blend of traditional and modern experiences. With its stunning landscapes, rich culture and friendly people, it’s no wonder it’s becoming a popular destination for travelers.
Whether you’re looking to explore the desert, relax on the beach or immerse yourself in the local culture, Oman has something for everyone.
So pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready for the adventure of a lifetime in this hidden gem of the Middle East!
All in all, Oman offers endless possibilities when it comes to experiencing Middle Eastern culture firsthand – come see for yourself!