Must visit Musandam

The Middle Eastern country of Oman is a country of breathtaking beauty which boasts a rich cultural history and an intriguing mix of contemporary opulence and traditions that span centuries.

Perhaps the jewel of Oman is the Musandam Peninsular, which is situated on the tip of Arabia and is just three hours by road from the tourist hotspot of Dubai.

Musandam is surrounded on three sides by the countries of the United Arab Emirates and is bordered by the Strait of Hormuz on the other. It is in Musandam where you will find the area known as the Fjord of Arabia, where rocky slopes drop a staggering 2,000 metres into the sea.

Those very waters are incredibly clear, and are home to some dazzling coral reefs which absolutely teem with a plethora of marine life.

It should not be surprising then that diving is a popular pastime, but if your preference is for activities above the water, then one of the best ways to enjoy this stunning coastline is from the deck of a dhow, a traditional fishing vessel.

One of the best ways to experience the very best of the Musandam Peninsular is to do a combination land and water tour.

Typically, these start in the capital of Musandam, Khasab, a town of just 18,000 people. Be warned though, the temperature here can be quite breath taking as Khasab has the proud distinction of once recording the world’s highest minimum temperature, a searing 41.2°C.

Because Khasab has a natural harbour, it has become a popular trading centre, and it boasts several good hotels. There is fine seafaring tradition here, and legend has it that the fabled Sinbad the Sailor called the waters of Oman his home.

Although the city of Khasab dates from the 17th century evidence of much earlier habitation can be seen near the Wadi Qadah near the town of Tawi where many pre-historic rock carvings can be easily seen.

Whilst on the land, join a 4WD safari which negotiates the mountain roads to Jebel Harim, passing stunning valleys as you gradually climb to the top of the cliffs from where you get stupendous panoramic views of the cliffs and sea well below.

It is a must to spend a day on a dhow, cruising to Khor Sham through a majestic 16 kilometre fjord where sheer walls envelope you and where dolphins are often seen at play. The waters here are impossibly clear and ideal for snorkelling, diving, or just lazing away on any one of the fine, white sandy beaches. The coral reefs are alive with brightly-coloured fish, and the waters warm and enticing.

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