10 Reasons to visit Muscat this Winter – 5-1

5              Perhaps an ideal winter treat if you visit Oman with children is to enjoy an experience with wildlife.

Dolphins - Oman
Dolphins – Oman

Two remarkable encounters offer a thrilling experience, not only for children but for everyone. Off much of the coast, but especially in Muscat with its deepsea canyon just offshore, are pods of Dolphins that can reach many hundred strong. Early mornings are best to enjoy the spectacle as the sea is calmer so you get a better view and the Dolphins, after a night resting, are in full hunting mode.

Green Turtle Oman
Green Turtle Oman

Onshore, at Ras Al Jinz, is another natural spectacle where Green Turtles come ashore to lay eggs. Although Summer is peak nesting time, the turtles can nest throughout the year so visitors are rarely disappointed. Unlike Dolphins nighttime is Turtle watching time, as the cooler temperature and fewer predators make the lengthy egg laying process less hazardous. Choose late evening when the eggs are laid or before dawn when the final Turtles return to sea.

4              Walking through a forest is probably not an obvious activity in Oman during winter.

Date Oasis Oman
Date Oasis Oman

However, Oman is full of man-made forests with millions of trees in the form of Date Oasis.

Date Oasis - Oman
Date Oasis – Oman

The canopy of leaves creates a continual cool shade under which paths meander, with Sunbirds & Indian Rollers calling and displaying. Other fruit such as Banana, Lime and Papaya form the undergrowth. These forests are sustained by the water flowing from man-made water channels called Falaj which, like their dependent forest, might be many centuries old.

Seasonal Cloud Forest - Oman
Seasonal Cloud Forest – Oman

If you prefer a Forest with Camels you can enjoy the remarkable ‘Seasonal Cloud Forest’ in Dhofar in earlyAutumn.

3              Though Geology in Oman doesn’t change season to season, the advantage of travelling in Winter is that relatively cooler weather allows comfortable exploration on foot.

Geology - Oman
Geology – Oman

You can see extraordinary sights of rock which bubbled up from the seabed such as Pillow Lava or rock that has been contorted through immense force into what might be a failed attempt at millefeuille pastry.

Empty Quarter Oman
Empty Quarter Oman

On a grander scale, a walk in the Winter chill above the 1,000meter deep Grand Canyon or trekking through vast golden Sand Dunes is sure to be an awe-inspiring experience.

2              This winter you can expect sunny days with clear blue skies and a day temperature between 20-30c in Oman.

Sunset-Oman
Sunset-Oman

The weather allows for confident planning of outdoor activities; every day should be ideal for a Picnic, throughout the country.

Beach-Oman
Beach-Oman

If you yearn to chill out, drive up to the mountains and with some luck you may get a scattering of snow and a drop below 0c.

Picnic - Oman
Picnic – Oman

1              Probably the most memorable experience of your winter visit to Oman will be its people.

Omani People - Oman
Omani People – Oman

They will prove to be the most friendly, hospitable and welcoming you could want to meet. You will be greeted with a warmth and sincerity that can be bewildering to people used to more distant northern European cultures; get used to it as this is going to be the background to your visit every day.

Omani Welcome - Oman
Omani Desert Welcome – Oman

That phrase you hear “a’salam alaykum” has an appropriate meaning which is “Peace be upon you”; how nice is that?

You can read about reasons to visit 10-6 here;  and more about what to do in Oman from my own books affiliated link.

 

Author: Tony Walsh

Book author including the current Bradt guide to Oman – edition 4

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