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Taste of Oman Overview
- 2014-01-01 - 2014-12-31
Discover the exotic, old-world charms of Oman
Steeped in tradition, laden with history and boasting sensational natural wonders, the Sultanate of Oman is a taste of old-world Arabia at its most enchanting. Talented craftsmen work their wares in time-trodden bazaars, elegant mosques stand dramatically against spartan backdrops and the 500 forts lining the country's shoreline will delight history and architecture buffs to the extreme. Symbols of ancient grandeur, these constructions are inextricably enmeshed with the country's past as a trading hub between Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Venture inland and encounter the picture-perfect oasis of Wadi Bani Khaled, a traditional desert culture, while camping in the Wahiba Sands and experience a national hospitality that knows no bounds.
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After arriving in Oman’s capital, visit the beautiful Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, which houses the second-largest carpet in the world; this marvel took more than 400 female weavers over four years to make. For an insight into Oman’s colourful past, take some time out at the interesting Natural History Museum, and later browse the silver and spice shops at the local bazaar before checking out the two 16th-century Portuguese forts that guard the city’s entrance. Take a daytrip to the forts of Al Hazm, located on the northern slopes of the Jebel Akhdar, and Nakhal – the best preserved of all Oman’s forts.
Escape the scorching heat of the desert and make for the cool waters of Wadi Bani Khalid. Perhaps cool off with a swim in one of the natural pools or laze beneath the palm trees that surround this oasis before journeying on to the overnight desert camp. Sleep under the stars, sing around the campfire and enjoy some traditional food and music.
Journey north to Lisq and be greeted by an oasis town brimming with ancient buildings and even a castle. Explore the city, grab a bag of dates (uniquely processed in the area) and head to Nizwa, one of Oman’s oldest cities. Meander around the fort and souqs before viewing the spectacular Jebel Akhdar mountain range.
Spot a metal worker toiling next to a red-hot furnace or a weaver assembling a goat hair cloak at the immense fort at Bahla. Explore the exceptional and maze-like fortress of Jabrin on foot to discover its supremely elegant and detailed woodwork. Tour around some smaller villages on the way back to Muscat.
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