12 amazing things to do in Muscat, the capital of Oman

Looking for the best things to do in Muscat, Oman? This post is all about where to stay and what to see and do in the capital of Oman, Muscat.

Situated between the Al Hajar Mountains and the Arabian Sea, Muscat has a stunning background. The capital of Oman has both spectacular ancient and modern landmarks. In this post, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to get most out of your visit to Muscat: how to get there, where to stay and the best things to do in Muscat. Make sure you’ll read till the end. We included as a bonus the must-do daytrip from Muscat.

featured image best things to do in muscat oman

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How to get to Muscat?

It is most likely that you arrive in Oman by plane. Muscat airport is located around 18 kilometers from the city center of Muscat. There are different options to get to the city center.

Renting a car

If you are traveling to Oman, chances are high you rented a car. In the arrival hall, the most important rental car companies have their own desk. Most of these are open 24/7, so it is possible to pick up your car at any time. The airport is located on the Main Sultan Qaboos Road between Muscat and Al-Seeb.

We recommend to rent a car in Oman through Discovercars.com with free cancellation and insurance included. Discovercars is a world leader in comparing prices and guarantees the best rates.

icon rental car Check prices and BOOK YOUR RENTAL CAR FOR OMAN HERE.

Take a taxi

There are plenty of taxis available from Muscat International Airport to all destinations in Muscat (and other cities). The taxi area is just outside the main building. Fare starts at 2.500 OMR and each kilometer costs 400 Baisa up to 40 kilometers. After that, they charge  200 Baisa for every kilometer.

Take public transport

Public buses that take you to Muscat city center (Mwasalat Transport Company) can be found at the bus station. The bus station is located on the ground floor outside the airport building. For more information, have a look at the Mwasalat Transport Company website (https://mwasalat.om/city-).

Where to stay in Muscat

Muscat has some excellent places to stay. Below, we give our top 5 accommodations in Muscat.

Mysk Al Mouj Hotel

The Mysk Al Mouj hotel is located in one of the most trendy neighbourhoods of Muscat, Al Mouj. The rooms are modern and have all the luxury you need. The best part of this hotel is definitely the outdoor rooftop pool with stunning views over the marina. Also make sure to enjoy a beautiful sunset from the rooftop

Check availability on BOOKING.COM

Mysk Al Mouj Hotel Muscat where to stay pool
Mysk Al Mouj Hotel Booking Muscat where to stay room

Naseem Hotel

The Naseem Hotel is located in the heart of Mutrah and is therefore perfect to explore the old town of Muscat. The modern rooms all have air-conditioning, a fridge and a private bathroom. Some of the rooms have a wonderful view over the harbor.

Check availability on BOOKING.COM

Naseem hotel where to stay in Muscat Oman booking room
Naseem hotel where to stay in Muscat Oman booking view

Radisson Collection Muscat, Hormuz Grand

If you are looking for a hotel close to Muscat airport, we recommend to stay at the Radisson Collection Muscat, Hormuz Grand. This hotel is located about 10 kilometers from Muscat airport. The rooms are modern, spacious and luxurious.

Check availability on BOOKING.COM

Radisson collection muscat hormuz grand oman room
Radisson collection muscat hormuz grand oman hotel frontview

Royal Tulip Muscat

The Royal Tulip hotel is located 14 kilometers from Muscat Airport. Also the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque and the Royal Opera House are within 10 kilometers from the hotel. The spacious rooms have air-conditoning and a private bathroom. The hotel is equipped with a stunning rooftop pool.

Check availability on BOOKING.COM

Royal Tulip hotel Muscat where to stay room
Royal Tulip hotel Muscat where to stay pool

The Chedi Muscat

If you want to splurge in luxury, than book a night at The Chedi in Muscat. This 5-star hotel located at the beach offers spa services and 3 different swimming pools. The bed- and bathrooms are luxurious and the entire hotel is very aesthetic. A wonderful place in Muscat

Check availability on BOOKING.COM

The Chedi Muscat Oman where to stay booking pool
The Chedi Muscat Oman where to stay booking room

What are the best things to do in Muscat?

Muscat has plenty of things to do, for every type of traveler. Below, we give you a summary of the best things to do in Muscat. We arranged these by region, so you’ll easy get an overview which attractions are close to each other.

Region of Mutrah

Mutrah Souq

A first important landmark in Muscat is Mutrah Souq. This old bazar with its labyrinthine alleys is the perfect place to buy some souvenirs. The entrance of the Souq is opposite Mutrah Corniche. It is tempting only to look at what the shops are selling, but don’t forget to look up! There is beautiful timber roofing to see. If you get lost in the Souq don’t panic and remember that getting lost in a Souq is just part of the fun.

roof mutrah souq muscat oman best things to do
shop mutrah souq muscat oman
glass window mutrah souq muscat oman

Have a stroll along Mutrah Corniche

Mutrah Corniche is a 3 kilometers long promenade that gives you beautiful views over the harbor on one side and over the Hajar mountains on the other side. It used to be Oman’s most important port for spice trade. Along the way, admire the fountains and monuments or have a rest in one of the shady rest areas.

mutrah corniche muscat oman ocean view
mutrah corniche in muscat oman statue fish
sultan boat mutrah corniche muscat Oman

The fish market

This modern fish market from 2017 is definitely worth a visit. Make sure to arrive in the early morning (or at least before noon) and witness the buzzling atmosphere from a traditional fish market. The stalls are full of fish in different types of species.

icon hello info The fish market is also the excellent place to start your visit. There is plenty of free parking space

fish market oman muscat

Al Alam palace

The royal Al Alam palace is also located in old Mutrah. This palace, more than 200 years old, was rebuild in 1982 and is one of the 6 royal residences of Sultan Qaboos. Both during the day as in the evening this palace is worth a visit. During the day, the colors of the palace shine against the blue sky. During the night, the palace is beautifully lit. Note that the palace can only be seen from outside as the entrance to the palace is forbidden.

The Al Alam palace in Muscat in Oman
royal sign al alam palace gate muscat oman

The National Museum

Right next to the Al Alam palace lies the National Museum. This museum showcases Oman’s cultural heritage from ancient times till present day. The museum is open from 10 am until 5 pm and entrance is 5 OMR (13 USD/ 12 EUR). The building in which the museum is located is again a masterpiece.

national museum outside muscat oman

From Al Riyam Park to Mutrah – C38 hike

The Al Riyam park offers stunning views over the ocean and the giant incense burner of Muscat. If is a well maintained park with many shady areas and is therefore the perfect place to relax or have a picnic.

incense burner muscat mutrah corniche oman

The park is also the start of a popular hiking route, the C38. This hiking route offers splendid views over the harbor and takes about 2 hours to finish. The hike even includes a small wadi. The hike is indicated by the national trail marker, a yellow-white-red sign. If you decide to do this hike, make sure to wear some sturdy shoes and take water with you? It’s best to start the hike early in the morning or later in the afternoon, to avoid the heat.

Region of Seeb

Al Mouj

Al Mouj is a very trendy and luxurious neighborhood in Muscat. There are different things to do like strolling along ‘The Walk’ Along this pleasant street you have different establishments to have a wonderful meal or a drink. Another place to spend some time is along the Marsa Promenade. It offers great views over the Al Mouj marina and a number of restaurants and cafes. We enjoyed Al Mouj most during the evening as everything was so beautifully lit. The Mysk Al Mouj Hotel is therefore an excellent choice as a hotel in Muscat as it is situated in this beautiful neighborhood.

Al Mouj harbor nighttime muscat Oman

Amouage

Did you know that one of the most luxury perfume brand comes from Oman? Amouage produces some of the most refined perfumes in the world. In the region of Seeb you can visit the visitor center of Amouage. In this visitor center you can see the history of Amouage, the production center and there is a gift shop were you can try (and if you want buy) the perfume. Entrance to the visitor center is free but you are asked to make an appointment upfront (by e-mail or by phone).

visitor center amouage muscat oman
amouage bottle visitor cente muscat

In between Mutrah and Seeb

Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque

The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is probably the most popular attraction in Muscat and is one of the best things to do in Muscat. It is the largest mosque in Oman and is an architectural masterpiece with impressive minarets and a stunning men’s prayer hall. The entrance to the mosque is free. Make sure to dress appropriately, make sure your wrists and ankles are covered. Women need to cover their head with a scarf. The mosque is open for tourists from 8 am till 11 am (every day except on Friday). We arrived early and had the place almost to ourselves. Getting there is easy as it is located next to Sultan Qaboos Street. Parking is free.

We met a lot of travellers that took a guided tour to visit Muscat and the Grand Mosque and were glad they did it. Next time we would also take a guided tour because you get much more information and you save a lot of time. In just 4 hours you get an excellent insight of all the highlights Muscat has to offer.

We recommend taking this MUSCAT CITY TOUR that includes:

  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
  • English driver and audio guides in English, German, Italian, Spanish, French
  • Free cancellation
prayer hall sultan qaboos grand mosque oman muscat
minaret sultan qaboos grand mosque oman muscat
entrance sultan qaboos grand mosque oman muscat
chandelier prayer hall sultan qabos gand mosque oman muscat

The Royal Opera House

The Royal Opera House in Oman is a stunning building and the guided tours let you experience its architectural beauty. There are daily tours between 8.30 am and 5.30 pm. The tour costs 4.2 OMR (11 USD / 10 EUR). 

Muscat viewpoints

In the area around Muscat, there are some stunning viewpoints to discover. Below you can find our two favorite viewpoints.

Bandar Al Khairan viewpoint

This viewpoint is located a 45 minutes’ drive from Muscat. Bandar Al Khairan is situated in between sandy mountains and the sea. At the viewpoint, you get an amazing view over the emerald green water of the sea and the islands. The viewpoint is also a great place to see the sunrise of sunset and is a popular spot during these times. It is also an excellent place to spend the night if you decide to camp in Oman.

icon read on Read more: Everything you need to know about camping in Oman

Bandar Al Khairan viewpoints outside Muscat Oman

Yiti viewpoint

This viewpoints offers you some stunning views over the districts Humriya and Ruwi, with its beautiful white houses.

Yiti viewpoint Muscat Oman

The must-do day trip from Muscat

A must-do as a daytrip from Muscat is snorkeling at the Daymaniyat islands. This beautiful nature reserve located off the coast of Oman has 9 different islands. Snorkeling around the islands is stunning. The coral and the schools of fish are amazing. You have an almost 100% guarantee to swim with sea turtles and to see (friendly) reef sharks. What more can you ask for?! Snorkeling at the Daymaniyat islands is a must on your list with things to do in Muscat. 

icon hello info Book a day trip to the Daymaniyat Islands in Muscat HERE

daymaniyat islands muscat oman
colorful fish daymaniyat islands muscat oman
sea turtle fish daymaniyat islands muscat oman
turtle sea daymaniyat islands muscat oman

We hope this post gives you inspiration on the best things to do in Muscat, so you can fully discover the beautiful capital of Oman.

icon read on Read more: The best travel ititinerary for Oman

If you have other suggestions on things to do in Muscat, questions or recommendations, leave a comment below!

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