On holiday with children, 8 things to do and see in Oman

Desert and camels, oasis and tropical gardens, the sultan’s palace and the colorful souk and child – friendly adventures. It is Oman, an ideal destination for those traveling with children. The inevitable stops for families

The Sultanate of Oman

The Sultanate of Oman is meeting place between Asia and Africa. A mountainous country surrounded by deserts overlooking the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea. Characterized by three different climates – temperate, desert and tropical – Oman can be reached in less than eight hours by flight from Italy. ONE Country that loves children, who respect their time and their desires. The little ones want to discover a country other than what they are used to and want to explore it.

Muscat, the capital

The old town, in Muttrah, with its maze of alleys and The Sultan’s Palace it is pure discovery for the little ones. In addition to the colorful souk, a visit to the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque and its gardens is the ideal place to step back in time.

Discover the Muscat Whale!


Exterior views of the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque during sunset, Bawshar, Oman

Muscat whale

Omani Natural History Museum (Oman Museum of Natural History) is the place to understand Oman’s geological richness through its minerals, fossils, animal and plant species presented with a simple and easily accessible interpretation for children. The large spaces also house the skeleton of a whale that landed on the Omani coast almost 30 years ago, and the lush botanical garden.

To explore the colorful seabed in Oman it is not necessary to be an expert diver. The whole family can board the port of Sidab, adjacent to the capital, on 22-seater glass bottom boats, from which you can admire corals, turtles and colorful fish along coral reefs on the Omani coast. Expert guides introduce passengers to underwater life and the importance of the coral reef for the ecosystem, for a 3-hour ride on the water that is both fun and educational. For info: Sidab Sea Side Tours, tel. +968 9965 5783

Sleep in Muscat: Al Waha, Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah

On the shores of the Arabian Sea, the Shangri-La resort is located in the heart of the private bay of Barr Al Jissah, 500 meters long and consists of three different structures inspired by the Arab architectural tradition: Al Husn, Al Bandar and Al Waha. The latter is designed for families: the Cool Zone children’s club has a swimming pool and playground and often organizes activities such as tournaments and treasure hunts, but also henna courses and traditional Arabic crafts in the Omani Heritage Village cultural center, where it is possible to interact with camels and horses in the best Omani tradition . The elderly can enjoy adrenaline-pumping activities in the Adventure Zone or, if they love relaxation, get carried away by the Lazy River, a navigable river in a rowboat that winds its way through the resort.

oman jump

Bandar Al Khairan’s dolphins

A 40-minute boat ride from the capital Muscat, departing from the port of Bandar Al Rawdha and sailing south towards As Sifah, you can experience the magic of an encounter with dolphins. The view of the rocky mountains rising from the sea and the characteristic Omani houses, painted in white, with a view of the water surround the water in Bandar Al Khayran Marine Reserve, whose coral reefs are home to a wide range of marine organisms and fish. Early in the morning, the meeting with the area’s dolphin families is guaranteed: an exciting time for young and old!

Sleep in As Sifah: For those who want to admire dolphins and travel with children, it is ideal to stop at Sifawy boutique hotels in As Sifah, which have their own swimming pool, babysitter and many activities available, including tours to admire dolphins, water courses, sports or a picnic on an island.

Even the feeling of one encounter with turtles on a beach at dawn or at night is a wonderful time for young and old. The Ras Al Jinz Sea Turtle Reserve Science Center just south of the town of Sur, about 300 km from Muscat, has just opened its Turtle’s Visitor Center, completely dedicated to the sea turtle’s life cycle and the site’s archeological sites. This route presents information about the life of the green turtles that come to lay their eggs on these beaches, but also about other types of turtles and the underwater life of the Indian Ocean off the coast of Oman. It is open every day from 09.00 to 20.00, and the entrance ticket costs 1 OMR (approx. 2 Eur) for adults, 500 Baisa (approx. 1 Eur) for children under 12, free admission if under 5 years.

Sleep in Ras Al Jinz: the research center is less than half an hour from the town of Sur. The center is easily accessible by car and also has some comfortable rooms, ideal for stopping in anticipation of a sunrise trip to see the spawning on Sur beach. The little ones will thus be able to experience the magic by waking up at dawn and admiring the first rays of the sun and then witnessing the birth of many small turtles on the sand and their race towards the sea.

Riding a camel in the desert

A sea of ​​sand, as it is often called in Oman: Wahiba Sands is a huge surface of dunes that is visibly lost and which forms the background for burning sunsets and the passage of Bedouin caravans. Located in the heart of the country, about a 4-hour drive from Muscat, the desert offers young explorers the chance to experience the thrill of dune bashing. This adventurous trip is suitable for children and teenagers, while a more relaxed camel ride is recommended for the little ones: the luxurious tent camp is home to some magnificent, peaceful specimens. In the evening, admiring the stars around the fire under the traditional tents and sitting on the carpets will make the little princes like Aladdin and Jasmin feel!

Sleeping in Wahiba Sands: Desert nights camp is a camp in the heart of the Omani desert that enjoys all the amenities a family needs: the rooms in the tent camp are mini apartments equipped with hot water, air conditioning and all the amenities of a real hotel. The camp has 2 family units, ideal for experiencing the desert with a pinch of adventure, but always close to mom and dad!

desert oman

Old forts and carpets of palm trees in Nizwa

Nizwa is the ancient capital of Oman: about 180 km from Muscat, it is still dominated today by an ancient fort and famous for its souk. Located in the center of a large oasis, Nizwa is the meeting place of the northern and southern caravan routes of the country, and every Friday hosts a large livestock market. If they dream of legends of a thousand and one nights, the little ones will have fun playing hide and seek in the majestic Portuguese fort, and then set off to discover the underground cave Al Hotta, 5 km long and crossed by a river of crystal clear waters , in the region Al Hamra. It resembles an underground gorge and has the special feature of having two entrances, one at 1040m, the other at 810m above sea level. Dripstones, stalagmites, limestone and karst crystals cover the roof and floor and will leave both adults and children speechless.

Sleeping in Nizwa: In the surroundings of Nizwa, the recent Sahab Hotel has one of the most beautiful views of Oman and offers various typical activities for young and old: riding a donkey, admiring the stars in the southern sky, shepherding the goats with the shepherds of the place are unique experiences that the little ones will hardly forget!

nizwa

The Sultan’s Palace

Finally, you can also find a residence for the sultan converted into a hotel. At Bustan Palace, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel is located in the middle of the crystal clear waters of the Muscat coast and surrounded by the majestic Al Hajar mountains. An entire floor of the majestic palace was owned by the Sultan of Oman, who could spend his holidays there. The building has become child – friendly with many services dedicated to children. Based on the many different creative workshops: from body painting to recycled art, from Arabic calligraphy to cooking lessons, as well as sports activities (football, climbing, swimming, tennis, yoga …), sand castle competitions and much more. For the more adventurous, the camping experience is not to be missed: theme pirates and princesses provide evening experiences with a unique atmosphere, including setting up a tent with balloons and personal decoration, surprise games, telling magical goodnight stories, in addition to providing personal wallets, a set of products for the care of children and other facilities for their rest.

curtain

bustan

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