Jebel Akhdar, Oman
The so-called Green Mountain is one of the most spectacular destinations in the entire Gulf region, especially when viewed from the summit. Oman’s highest point offers some fantastic trekking, giving you the chance to discover ancient villages and plenty of local flora and fauna, which both thrive thanks to the relatively high level of rainfall in the area. Peer down Oman’s equivalent of the Grand Canyon – this is certainly not one for the vertiginous among you, though…
GPS location: 23.067741, 57.670114
Driving time: 5hrs 16mins (483km)
The Omani capital is the epitome of hospitality, and is swiftly becoming a hugely popular tourist destination for those seeking traditional splendour in a country as laid-back as they come. Culture vultures will have a packed itinerary here, starting with visits to some of the many museums. While not the largest, the Bait Al Zubair Museum (www.baitalzubair.com) is arguably the most intriguing. Funded by the family whose names it bears, this restored traditional home contains a brilliantly curated collection, including a stunning selection of jewellery and wedding garments. Other must-visits are the stunning Royal Opera House Muscat (www.rohmuscat.org.om), especially for those aficionados of the more old-school styles of music.
GPS location: 23.601755, 58.399049
Driving time: 5hrs (446km).
By far the longest trip on our list, you’ll definitely want to make a weekend of it down in sunny Salalah. For those brave enough to tackle this trek (you might want a co-driver or two for this one), the rewards here are immense, as this coastal city is as wonderfully welcoming as it is abundant with nature. Twitchers should pack their binoculars and head for the coastal wetlands, where you’ll find an array of terns, waders, raptors and passerines, in a lovely location set against the backdrop of the stunning Dhofar Mountains.
GPS location: 17.050713, 54.106418
Driving time: 11hrs 30mins (1,236km).
Three must-visit destinations in Oman
Head to Oman’s mountains, museums and wetlands
Jebel Akhdar, Oman
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