"Oman" Top 5 Page for this destination Oman by traveldave

Oman Travel Guide: 1,406 reviews and 3,860 photos

Prior to 1970, Oman was one of the most backward and closed societies in the world. There were only three schools and one 23-bed hospital in the entire country. There were only two paved roads in and around the capital of Muscat. In addition, there were no newspapers, no radio or television stations, and no civil service. And the country was virtually closed to tourists.

In 1970, Sultan Qaboos bin Sa'id Al Bu Sa'id came to power and set about modernizing the infrastructure of his country. Thanks to money generated by Oman's oil reserves, there are now hospitals and schools throughout the country, and even the remotest village has water and electricity. An excellent road system connects most villages and cities.

Oman is no longer closed to the outside world. It is quickly becoming a popular vacation destination, attracting visitors with its unique culture, spectacular desert landscapes, and clean, unspoiled beaches.

I entered Oman on two separate days during a birdwatching trip to the United Arab Emirates. My group crossed into Buraimi on our way to the Hanging Gardens to look for desert birds. From there, we crossed through the desert of Oman on our way to the east coast of the United Arab Emirates. Then the next day we went into the Musandam Peninsula, which is Omani territory separated from the rest of the country by a section of the United Arab Emirates.

I found Oman to be more traditional and less hectic than the United Arab Emirates. Many Omanis still tend flocks of sheep and herds of camels (and camel's milk is available in stores). Tribal groups live traditional lifestyles in the mountains and have little contact with the outside world. And Oman is more unspoiled, with little of the massive development projects that are so prevalent in the United Arab Emirates.

  • Last visit to Oman: Nov 2005
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (10)

Travelogues (1)

Comments (17)

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Jul 21, 2013 at 3:58 AM

    It?s great that you even went to Oman for bird watching. Up to now I assumed that there weren't any birds in Oman, but I suppose there are some kinds of birds everywhere, even in the hottest and driest countries.

  • Doctor38's Profile Photo
    Oct 2, 2010 at 3:42 AM

    I guess you have to develop a taste for a camel milk to like it. People who are used to it, don't seem to mind at all :-))

  • JohnniOmani's Profile Photo
    Apr 10, 2010 at 9:11 AM

    Hopefully you will make it back to my former home :) cheers Jz

  • Mar 3, 2010 at 2:36 AM

    Two litres of water per day in the summer is not enough. 5 litres at least is required. As for going into the desert alone. Don't do it. Go with other vehicles. Your tyres can come off the rims when you deflate them for sand driving. It happens.

  • MikeBird's Profile Photo
    Sep 26, 2008 at 3:07 PM

    Dave - you should consider visiting Botswana - the kalahari birdlife would be an interesting contrast to your Arabian desert species. Mike

  • LoriPori's Profile Photo
    Apr 7, 2008 at 5:38 AM

    Enjoyed this page on Oman Dave, especially about the Shihiuh Tribe & that was a great warning tip on venturing into the desert. Camel's milk sounds delish.

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Jan 5, 2008 at 11:06 AM

    Great page as always Dave!

  • angiebabe's Profile Photo
    Oct 5, 2007 at 12:51 AM

    Interesting page and tips thanks, hope i will get here one day - the hanging gardens sound enticing when they can be seen hanging!

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Jul 17, 2007 at 2:04 PM

    This is a part of the world I don't normally read a lot about from a tourism point of view! Excellent photos and very interesting tips here!

  • JessH's Profile Photo
    May 28, 2007 at 4:46 AM

    Hi Dave. Nice little page, well-written & informative. I'm planning a trip to Muscat & Salalah in August so thanks for the tips. I don't find camel-milk too bad; and I agree: Mussandam truly is beautiful! Greetings from Dubai :-) Jess

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