When we visited Oman, we immediately fell in love with this beautiful and versatile country. Most people think of a huge desert when they think of Oman, but in this travel guide, we will show you that the country has much more to offer. This 2 week travel itinerary for Oman will make sure you see all the highlights and hidden gems Oman has to offer. We’re sure about that, as this is the route we took when we travelled through Oman. We help you to plan your trip by giving you all the information you need to prepare your itinerary for Oman: what places do you need to visit, what to take with you, where to stay, etc.
Table of Contents – travel itinerary for Oman
How to get to Oman?
The most common way to reach Oman is to fly into Muscat International Airport (MCT). The airport is located near Muscat, the capital of the country. The airport has many international connections. We had an inbetween stop at Istanbul before flying into Oman. In the arrival hall of Muscat International Airport, 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.
Check prices and BOOK A FLIGHT TO OMAN HERE
Renting a car in Oman
If you want to experience Oman to the fullest, we highly recommend to rent a car. Renting a car will allow you to explore Oman at your own pace. Whether you choose a 2WD or 4WD car is completely up to you. The travel itinerary for Oman we suggest below, is completely doable with a 2WD. Not all roads in this itinerary are on tarmac roads, so we advise to book a car with as much clearance as possible. We drove a KIA Sportage (similar to e.g. a Toyota RAV).
We always rent our cars through Discovercars.com with free cancellation and insurance included. Discovercars.com is a world leader in comparing prices and offers great deals. We have never encountered any problems regarding their services.
Check availability and prices for a 2WD car in Oman HERE
If you want to see more remote places we do advice to rent a 4WD. Oman has some stunning mountain ranges, dry riverbeds (wadi’s) and the amazing wahiba sands desert to discover. We have seen a lot of Oman, but we still feel like there is a lot more to explore! We met some other travellers that had a 4WD with a rooftop tent and it looked like the ultimate freedom. Next time we go to Oman we will definitely rent a 4WD car with a roof top tent. All the people we met rented via iDrive 4×4 and told that they offered the best service and value.
Check the iDrive4x4 website for prices of a 4WD car in Oman HERE
Petrol in Oman is cheap, we payed 0,5 EUR (0,55 USD) per liter. The roads in Oman are in perfect condition and besides in Muscat, there is little traffic. Google Maps works great for navigation. We also recommend downloading Maps.me for offline navigation.
If you only spend a couple of days in Oman and you are not renting a car, day tours from Muscat are a valable option. We will link the best day tours from Muscat below.
Best time to travel to Oman?
The best time to visit Oman is during the winter months, from October until March. During these months, the temperatures will vary between 20 and 30 degrees. During the summer months, temperatures go anywhere from 35 to 50 degrees.
Read more: The 20 best things to do in Oman
A 2 week travel itinerary for Oman
Day 1 – Arrival in Muscat
Welcome to Oman! Your first day in Oman is best spend in Muscat, the buzzling capital of Oman. Dependent on the time you arrive in Muscat, you can either relax at one of the stunning hotels, start exploring the city or shop for some camping gear if you’re planning to camp in Oman. We also suggest to buy a tourist SIM card upon arrival at the airport. We bought a tourist SIM card of Omantel and we were very happy with the coverage during our time in Oman.
We are big fans of a portable WiFi hotspot so we can keep our original SIM-card in our phones. It also allows us to share one tourist SIM card with different persons.
Where to stay in Muscat?
For your first day in Muscat, we highly recommend to book at night at the Mysk Al Mouj Hotel. The hotel is located in the most trendy neighbourhoods of Muscat, Al Mouj. The rooms are modern and have all the luxury you need after a long distance flight. The best part of this hotel is definitely the outdoor rooftop pool with stunning views over the marina. No better way to relax after those long flying hours. Also make sure to enjoy your first Omani sunset from the rooftop of the hotel.
Check availability on BOOKING.COM
If you arriving late in Oman, a hotel close to Muscat airport is advisable. 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.
Day 2 – Bimmah Sinkhole and Wadi Shab
On day 2, you start your road trip through Oman in the direction of Sur, along the coastline of Oman. After about 90 minutes driving, you arrive at the first stop of the day, the Bimmah Sinkhole. This is one of the most stunning natural pools we have ever seen! This sinkhole was formed by a collapse of the surface. The water is brackish (both salty and fresh) as the water comes both from the mountains and the sea. It can get busy at the Bimmah Sinkhole, so we recommend to arrive early. We arrived at 8 am and we had the place to ourselves.
The second stop of the day is one of our favorite places in Oman, Wadi Shab. From the Bimmah Sinkhole, it will take about 20 minutes to reach the entrance of Wadi Shab. This is a must-visit in Oman! Make sure to pack plenty of water and your swim gear. Take the boat to the opposite side of the river and start your hike to the Wadi Shab swimming pools. We wrote a post about the best wadis in Oman, where you can find more information about Wadi Shab.
After your refreshing time at Wadi Shab, continue driving to Sur and witness another great sunset at the highest watching tower of Sur.
Where to stay in Sur?
Sur Grand Hotel – SUR
The Sur Grand Hotel has beautiful rooms with views over the beach. It’s the perfect location to start exploring Sur
See prices and availability on BOOKING.COM
Day 3 – Sur and Ras Al Jinz
Sur is an old trading point. It’s a beautiful town with old architecture. We recommend to visit the lighthouse and fort. Sur is also famous for the dhows (traditional boats). There is still a factory where you can see how these traditional boats are build. Also the souq is worth a visit, especially the part where they sell gold and jewels is impressive.
Read more: The best things to do in Sur in Oman
After you tasted the Omani life in Sur, continue driving to Ras Al Jinz. After about 35 minutes you will arrive at the protected turtle nesting area. There is a museum that you can visit and during sunrise or sunset, turtle spotting tours are organized at the Ras Al Jinz reserve are organised.
Book a tour from Muscat to the Ras Al Jinz reserve here
Where to stay at Ras Al Jinz?
If you want to join a turtle spotting tour, it is best to stay near Ras Al Jinz. The SAMA Ras Al Jinz Resort provides easy access to the Ras Al Jinz reserve. The resort has a very intimate atmosphere. There are beautiful bungalows with private bathrooms.
Day 4 – Wadi Bani Khalid and the Wahiba Sands
On day 4, your road trip through Oman will take you to another excellent wadi, Wadi Bani Khalid. It takes about 2 hours and a half to reach Wadi Bani Khalid. This easy to reach wadi is excellent to have a refreshing dip before you continue your trip to the desert. Make sure to spend a couple of hours at Wadi Bani Khalid.
Read more: Everything about Wadi Bani Khalid in the best wadis in Oman
From here, continue towards the Wahiba Sands. If you are driving a 2WD you will need a transfer with a 4WD. Most camps in the Wahiba Sands offer these transfers and we highly suggest booking this upfront. We recommend to stay at least one night in the desert, so you are able to watch the sunset and sunrise. We wrote an in-depth travel guide about the Wahiba Sands where you can read all the information you need.
Read more: Our in-depth travel guide about the Wahiba Sands
Where to stay in the Wahiba Sands?
The Starry Domes Desert Camp is definitely our favourite accommodation in the Wahiba Sands. This camp upon a hill has several domes with a patio where you can enjoy the stunning surroundings. The camp has some really nice spots that make the perfect background for your photos or videos.
Check availability on BOOKING.COM
Day 5 – From the Wahiba Sands to Birkat Al Mouz and Nizwa
After your stay at the Wahiba Sands continue driving in the direction of Nizwa. After about 2 hours driving, you come upon a town called Birkat Al Mouz, a lovely old town surrounded by a dates and banana plantation. Make sure you take your time to explore the old ruins. From here, it takes about a 20 minutes’ drive to Nizwa, where you can spend the night.
Where to stay in Nizwa?
This hostel offers lovely rooms with a private bathroom. There is a public parking available. The Aryaf inn has a pool and a garden to enjoy. It is the perfect place to stay a couple of nights while you explore Nizwa and surroundings.
Check availability on BOOKING.COM
Day 6 – Nizwa
On day 6 of your road trip through Oman, you’ll spend an entire day in Nizwa. And there are plenty of things to see and do in Nizwa. We recommend visiting the oldest and largest for of Oman, Nizwa fort, in the morning, when temperatures are bearable. Right outside Nizwa fort, you can find Nizwa Souq, one of the oldest markets in Oman. The perfect place for souvenir shopping! We loved the atmosphere of Nizwa Souq better than Mutrah Souq in Muscat. If you happen to be in Nizwa on a Friday, make sure to check out the goat market at the souq.
Day 7 – Jabreen Castle, Bahla fort and Al Hamra
On day 7 you leave Nizwa behind and you’ll explore more castles and mud villages in the area. Make sure to visit the Jabreen castle early in the morning, before it get’s too hot. It is one of the best-preserved castles in the area and is build using traditional building techniques.
Another great thing to visit in the area is the Bahla fort. Bahla fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is known for its impressive defensive walls.
If you still have some time left after the castle and the fort, we highly recommend to continue to the beautiful mud village Al Hamra. This 400 year-old village is a popular destination because you can witness traditional architecture and history.
Where to stay in Al Hamra in Oman?
The Bait Al Aali Guesthouse is definitely one of the most beautiful places to stay in Al Hamra! The guesthouse is located in a historic building and has a roof top terrace with amazing views.
Day 8 – Misfat Al Abriyeen
Misfat Al Abriyeen is a mountain village, located roughly 1.000 meters above sea level in the Hajar mountains. The village can only be explored by foot. There are marked trails that take you up in the mountains and back down to the river. The area is really beautiful so we do recommend taking your time here and enjoy the beautiful village and its surrounding gardens.
Where to stay in Misfat Al Abriyeen?
Misfah Old House is an old house in the middle of Misfat that was converted in a guesthouse. They kept the traditional style in the rooms. There is a beautiful terrace with splendid views where you can have a delicious meal.
Day 9 – Al Ayn and Wadi Damm
On day 9 you’ll visit some hidden gems as not many tourist come here. After Misfat Al Abriyeen drive to the west to the beehive tombs of Al Ayn, a remote UNESCO World Heritage site. These stone tombs dating back from the Bronze Age are placed against a majestic background. You have to park your car along the main road and then have to do a short hike to reach the beehive tombs. But it’s definitely worth it!
After your hike, it’s tome to get a refreshing dip at one of our favourite wadis in Oman, Wadi Damm. Compared to Wadi Bani Khalid and Wadi Shab, Wadi Damm is definitely less crowded. We wrote a blogpost about our favourite wadis in Oman, where you can find all the information you need to visit Wadi Damm.
Read more: Everything about our favorite wadis in Oman
In the evening, we suggest to return back to Bahla so you can continue to Jebel Shams the next day.
Where to stay in Bahla?
We enjoyed our stay at Bahla Hotel Apartments. The rooms have a private bathroom and the hotel has a good price-quality ratio.
Check availability on BOOKING.COM
Days 10 and 11 – Jebel Shams
To reach Jebel Shams, you need to drive an awesome mountain road with some spectacular views. The road is perfectly doable with a 2WD, but take care on the gravel roads. On your way to Jebel Shams you’ll pass Ghul, which makes a perfect stop to take some photos. Continue along the twisting mountain road and take in the spectacular views. One of the best things to do at Jebel Shams is witnessing the sunset and sunrise.
Make sure to include the Balcony Walk into your travel planes. This route, officially known as the W6 route starts in Al Khitaym village and takes you along a balcony-like ledge high in the canyon. The hike is 7km forth and back. At the end, you reach an abandoned village.
Where to stay in Jebel Shams?
This hotel is situated close to the start of the Balcony Walk. The rooms are luxurious and the views are spectacular.
Check availability on BOOKING.COM
Days 12, 13 and 14 – Muscat and the Daymaniyat islands
Your final days in Oman are in the Muscat region. We wrote an in-depth travel guide on the 12 best things to do in Muscat. We included an extra day in Muscat so you are able to join a tour to the Daymaniyat Islands. Snorkeling with the sea turtles and the blacktip reef sharks is a must-do when in Oman. For us, it was one of the best memories we have and it definitely proves Oman is more than just a huge desert.
Read more: The best things to do in Muscat
We hope this post gives you all the information you need to plan your itinerary for Oman. If you have any questions or suggestions, do drop us a message!
Matthias and Mieke
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