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As i have now visited Oman for the second year in a row, i wanted to start this topic with describing the wadis and places i visited, and my experiences. There are lots of other wadis and things to see and do, but i will just mention the ones i visited and give a brief explanation on what they are about. Once you google the specific areas you will find hundreds of photos and more information.

https://www.omantripper.com/

Above mentioned  site has really nice information on the topic. 

The best season to visit Oman is between Mid-October to March as the temperatures become enjoyable.

Visting the Musandam protectorate is also nice and I will post a topic on this one later.

 

Trip to Oman preparation

* Arrange your visas online in advance. https://evisa.rop.gov.om/. Visa on arrival is not allowed anymore from what i've heard.

* Make sure your car insurance has Oman coverage. If not ,you will need to purchase one at the border itself (bit of a hassle).

* Do not carry alcohol  or other items which you would not be able to travel into UAE/Oman. Drones are not allowed.

* Make sure the car is registered under your name and that the driver is part of the travel group.

* If driving in convoy, a two way radio is very handy to stay in touch and announce the coffee breaks.

* Make sure your car is in proper technical condition. Pass by your mechanic to have all fluids checked before leaving. Check your tyre pressure, and verify if the spare wheel is OK. 

* Top up the fuel regularly to avoid running empty. There are nowadays more and more petrol stations, but some remote areas will require a long drive to find one.

Wadi preparation

Visiting a wadi is a fantastic thing to do with family and friends, but you have to come prepared if you want to experience it fully. You will need the following:

  • Cap or hat to protect you from the sun as well as sunscreen
  • Food, snacks and plenty of drinking water.
  • Swimming clothes and towel..
  • Sturdy footwear with good grips: something that can get wet and you may need to swim with  (old sneakers or water shoes from Decathlon will do).
  • Life jackets for the children.
  • Camera and water proof bag: In many places you will need to swim in the pools to go from one place to another. We used the Decathlon waterproof special zip lock bag that you can put around your neck, that holds your phone and car keys. Other items that can get wet can be put in a rucksack.
  • It is recommended to arrive in the early morning (7-8am). The more touristical wadis can get very busy after 10am.
  • Dress respectfully: bikinis and cleavage are not really well accepted. 
  • When you enter a wadi and see the
    first water pool, do not think that this is the end of your destination. A wadi is a stream that can sometimes be kilometres long and involve hiking or driving till the end. Ask around and the locals will gladly show you the sweet spots.

Camping preparation

If you're planning on camping, be aware of the following:

* You can freely camp on the beaches, but many of them have pebbles, so take an air mattress.

* Be careful when roaming around the bushes at night. There are snakes and scorpions around. Long pants and closed shoes are recommended. I had a very very close encounter with a viper recently. 

* Do not camp in the wadis. There is risk of flooding and you will never make it out in time once a storm hits you.

* Do not camp near river beds or stagnant water: mosquitos will be having the time of their lives devouring you or attacking you.

These are the places we visited on our 2018 and 2019 trip:

 

Wadi Shab

Wadi Shab parking area:  22.839733, 59.247116

You can easily park underneath the bridge, and a small boat will carry you across the river where the adventure starts. You can choose between following the walking path, or using the wadi pools to swim from one side to the other. The reward is at the very end where you can swim in a cave.

This is a perfect wadi to start with. Its family friendly, not too crazy adventurous, and you can decide for yourself how far you want to go.

You do not need a 4x4.

IMG_20181025_111007.thumb.jpg.8bd226e65f79072de93313d791233774.jpg

 

Wadi Tiwi and Mibam Village

My personal favorite wadi that makes you truly feel you are in another world. You will need a 4x4 to navigate through the very steep and narrow village road. You will be greeted by the local youth that will offer to give you a hand carrying your bags, assist your children, and show you the most beautiful places. We had 3 local boys that really helped us out and were the perfect guides.

Once you reach the village, you have to descend along the terraces where you will see banana trees, mango trees, and many others. The biggest reward is at the bottom where you can swim in a huge caved area with lush greeneries and waterfalls. Reaching the bottom is not possible with children. Its a tricky descend and climb where the locals will give you a hand, but in theory this is the kind of thing where you would need some climbing gear and safety ropes. Picture below shows idiot me doing without climbing gear but with help from a guide. 

Starting point:  22.822144, 59.258530

IMG_20181026_124558.thumb.jpg.37cf18cb42f112c5056a635d5d3ab4c8.jpg

 

Bimma Sinkhole

23.036267, 59.071988

This is a sinkhole near the coast, and nearby Wadi Tiwi and Wadi Shab. It's a small circular lake with turquoise waters, approx. 20m deep. If you stick your feet in the water, the little fishies will give you a free foot scrub :)
There is a play park next to it, so the kids can enjoy while you have some snacks. 

633578053_2018-10-2719_06_55.jpg.5f56e8c2fbf5af950f09dc3f90592bd4.jpg

 

Wadi Al Arbeieen

Starting Point: 23.078278, 59.045630

This wadi involves a very nice winding road, where you will need a 4x4 to venture through the water passings and river beds. They are not very deep so a regular SUV or 4x4 will manage.

It's about a 20mins drive to the actual parking. The wadi is consisting out of nice water pools where you can take a dip, or you can go for a walk around the area.

2019-10-19_09_49_53.thumb.jpg.57a2ee1035e350cb74b87ac7e580083a.jpg

 

Wadi Bani Khalid

This wadi is very popular among the tourists, so it is recommended to arrive early. It has many beautiful water pools, and the more adventurous people can go a bit further into a bat cave (Muqil Cave).

A9272B1F-FB55-45DC-806B-65C3C67614BB.jpeg.b759f4ddaf8160cc97e134851325f031.jpeg


Other things to see and do in Oman:

Muscat:

Capital of Oman. Visit the souqs or some of the historical buildings or just stay overnight to catch up on some sleep. The beach is also nice. 

Nizwa

was originally part of the trip, but we left it out because of lack of time. Apparently it is an old historical town, nice to to for a stroll or eat at the local restaurants.

Sur:

As we visited the Ras Al Jinz Turtle reserve, we stayed into a nearby hotel in Sur. The Sur Plaza Hotel was a welcoming place and the comfort of a real bed and shower is a bliss after the camping activities. 

Sur is a calm town with some nice forts and watch towers. 
631D4E9B-672C-4DB2-A4EF-0679CD13CE20.jpeg.dfc864b8454d8237d69cbf7ca57fa42d.jpeg

Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve:

Ras al Jinz Turtle Reserve محمية راس الجنز
Ras al Jinz، Sur, Oman
+968 9655 0606
https://goo.gl/maps/asetNTxmVGeDE9FH8

Definitely worth a visit to see the turtles hatching in the sand and going back into the ocean. Beautiful building with hotel and facilities. Nice restaurant with buffet. We went for the evening visit that started at 8:30pm.

The most beautiful thing I saw that night was the night sky. The moon was not out and it was pitch black in that area. 
 

Reply with your feedback, questions, or information! Let’s share the best spots for this winter season !

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Some more scenery pics: 

BE17229B-7BA9-48C4-95D7-729776FBA86B.jpeg

08508487-7FB6-4A9C-B4E4-61281C154325.jpeg

BD816BF8-A0D3-4172-846F-48CFA22C2BF8.jpeg

20041227-C944-4D4D-8386-A06DB0B548FC.jpeg

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One small detail missing and which might lead to a major headache(personal experience) later if not checked. Apparently drones are not allowed. And the check happens after the complete visa process. So its either you go back to UAE or they will confiscate your drone which you will then have to release by paying  a fine and going all the way to Muscat customs office to obtain it. 

If anyone of you was able to sneak in the drone please let me know the trick.  For me this happened on the Khasab border.  Not sure whether the same check happens on other borders. 

 

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Beautiful trip report and idea to document all good places to visit in Oman in one place. WELL DONE.

I would also love to hear the drive time, total number of days and approx cost.

Looking forward to see you leading this Oman trip next, so we can join.

Here are few place that I have explored earlier in Oman:

  • Jabal Shams
  • Ras al Jinz
  • Wadi near sur
  • Sink hole
  • Salalah

4 Wadi near Sur.JPG

3 Starfall.JPG

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18 minutes ago, Jeh said:

One small detail missing and which might lead to a major headache(personal experience) later if not checked. Apparently drones are not allowed. And the check happens after the complete visa process. So its either you go back to UAE or they will confiscate your drone which you will then have to release by paying  a fine and going all the way to Muscat customs office to obtain it. 

If anyone of you was able to sneak in the drone please let me know the trick.  For me this happened on the Khasab border.  Not sure whether the same check happens on other borders. 

 

Yes, totally right. I have a really decent drone laying around at the house that would have been perfect, but i did not take it with me as it takes up too much space. Have edited the post thank for the comment.

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Not a wadi, but I would add to the must do list in Oman Al-Jabal al-Akhdar. Breathtaking views up there (access by a new and very clean road but only 4x4 are allowed due to the strong inclines)

 

 

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58 minutes ago, Gaurav said:

Beautiful trip report and idea to document all good places to visit in Oman in one place. WELL DONE.

I would also love to hear the drive time, total number of days and approx cost.

Looking forward to see you leading this Oman trip next, so we can join.

Here are few place that I have explored earlier in Oman:

  • Jabal Shams
  • Ras al Jinz
  • Wadi near sur
  • Sink hole
  • Salalah

 

 

Thanks @Gauravgoing for another Oman trip the coming winter is definitely on my list. I am totally in for a Carnity group drive. As per my experience, the maximum convoy we did was three cars, and i think 4-5 cars would really be the maximum to stay in convoy. What also needs to be considered is that you need to have likeminded people in the convoy that are OK with driving this long stretch, and are interested in camping and have the tools and gear.

This was our 2019 itinerary with costs involved:

1) Start at Sharjah Mosque Maliha Road Petrol station around 8AM.

2) Cross the Khatmat Maliha border. Online Visas are 5 Omani Riyal per person.

3) Drove the first 4 hours, had some lunch in Amrat, and picked up some firewood in this nice camping accessories shop: 23.492042, 58.498549

4) Drove to Dibab beach area (+/- 1 hour)  and set up camp for the night: 23.081194, 59.049863. 

5) The next morning, we proceeded our trip to Wadi Al Arbeein (35 mins). 

6) After noon, we drove to Sur (90 mins) and checked into the Sur Plaza Hotel. We paid 350AED for a night. Kids enjoyed the pool, and later we drove to the town of Sur for a stroll. Then we drove to the Ras al Jinz Turtle Reserve where the evening visit only started at 8:30 PM (either 5AM or 8:30PM to spot the turtles). https://www.rasaljinz-turtlereserve.com/pages/34/turtle-viewing

We paid 20 Omani Riyal for the tour. (8 per adult, 2 per child between 5-12y old).

7) The next morning we drove from Sur to Wadi Bani Khalid. (1 hour).

That same afternoon we were planning to look for another camping spot and drive home the next day, but as our son was having a nasty cough from the sand and camping, we drove straight home that evening and arrived home around 10PM. 

As you can see, the only costs involved are the petrol (we managed to do 600km on a single tank with the Pajero), some  snacks, and karak Chai on the way, and the entry fees for the turtle reserve. Hotel bookings can be found cheaper, but we wanted to let the kids enjoy the pool while the parents took some deserved rest. Oman in general is cheap to get aound.

 

 

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Last someone told me was their 2 way radios were also confesticated at the border. Wonder how you got away with that.

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13 minutes ago, Rahimdad said:

Last someone told me was their 2 way radios were also confesticated at the border. Wonder how you got away with that.

We took the Khatmat Maliha border. He only asked us to open the Cooler and one aluminum case in the back of the car. Our radios were in the glove compartment, so had no issues. 
On the way back we came into UAE via the Hatta border and the same applied. Just opened the boot of the car, had a quick glance and we were back on our way. 

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47 minutes ago, Frederic said:

What also needs to be considered is that you need to have like-minded people in the convoy that are OK with driving this long stretch, and are interested in camping and have the tools and gear.

Totally agree on this one and also should have all expectation set in the beginning than opening any surprise on the way to detour here and detour there. I screwed two oman trips in exact same way.

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