Have you ticked Muscat off your bucket list? Had you even thought to add it before right now? Whether the capital of Oman has been on your radar for a minute, a month, or for a lifetime; it’s somewhere you simply have to see.
If you’re not sure where to start, never fear, at House of Coco we’re never short of a few bits of travel inspo, so we’ve sampled the very best that Muscat has to offer here are our picks.
Get friendly with a camel, or a jeep
When you imagine staring out across the sand dunes of the capital you have a few different options to consider, namely, how you’re going to go, and you’re going to get there. Starting from the Dunes by Al Nahda resort you can take a short wander on a camel to capture that sense of ancient wonder. Or, you can do something that’s a little more modern and that will get the blood pumping that bit faster…
Dune bashing is a popular pass time for visitors and locals alike, and consists of being driven at speed over the teetering sand dunes that surround a luxury desert resort (the best sentences always seem a little strange the first time you read them). As your seatbelt tenses around you and you’re holding your breath, teetering over the edge (all the while in the hands of an experienced driver) the feeling isn’t dissimilar to being on a rollercoaster. Your heart jumps into your throat and suddenly you’re sliding so fast it feels like flying. If you’re worried about dune bashing but even slightly tempted, go for it! Despite our initial reservations, dune bashing is still one of our favourite Oman memories months later.
Indulge in a little retail therapy, with a lot more shouting
Though the serenity of high end boutiques is a beautiful thing, the mayhem of a market is has a certain, undeniable allure. A visit to the Muscat souq is a great way to brush up on your negotiation skills and to find some gorgeous silver pieces in the process. Whether you’re looking for a minimalist bangle to add to your capsule wardrobe or a decorative oil lamp to display proudly in your home, you’re certain to find something you love. When you’ve found something you love, be prepared to (verbally) fight for it.
Bartering, or haggling dependant on which term you prefer, is an intrinsic part of a trip to the Muscat souq, the emotions are feigned and heightened, so don’t worry when you propose a price and the seller looks back at you like you’ve offered them a chicken painted pink, it’s all part of the game! With a little skill, a lot of stubbornness and a little bit of luck, you can grab a beautiful souvenir, and a story that’s worth even more.
Get scrubbed up
After all that excitement, a scrub from the skilled hands of the team at the Uru Spa at the Al Nadha Resort and Spa is a great way to take any lingering tension out of your shoulders… and the rest of your body. Start with a rejuvenating foot scrub and then lie back and relax as your body is worked from head to toe with herbal concoctions featuring the fruits and herbs grown onsite. When you’re suitably cooled down and relaxed it’s time to hop into the steam shower and let your pores absorb all of the goodness it’s enveloped by. Finish the whole thing off with a shower and you’ll feel like a whole new person — trust us.
Count the stars
As the day in the city ends, the sky over Dunes by Al Nahda comes to life. Tucked just outside of the main city, Dunes is protected from much of the light pollution and that means a fantastic time to for stargazing. You can opt to either dine in the restaurant and finish your night with a glass of your favourite drink looking up at the sky, or you can spend the entire night that way! The team at Dunes arrange the most amazing feasts under the stars for their guests, packed with fine dining treats in perfect portions, sat on deceptively supportive cushions so you can watch the night’s sky until you’re ready to count sheep instead of stars.
Whatever you choose to do, you’ll come away feeling rested and relaxed — even after dune bashing! The most amazing thing about Oman is the sense of quiet confidence it exudes, which leaves visitors feeling safe and secure every step of the way.
So, you’ve come to the end of this article, have you booked your flights to Muscat yet?