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Q & A: Visiting Oman

14th November 2017

Oman is one of our favourite Middle Eastern destinations to visit, a peaceful modern Arabic country with vast expanses of desert, dramatic fjords and an exciting capital city which blends traditional Arabic and Islamic styles.

An excellent choice for a winter sun holiday, Oman also boasts a whole range of adventure activities and plenty of opportunities for a trip into the unknown. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions from clients booking tours in Oman.

When is the best time to go?

October to April is the best time to visit Oman, making it the perfect destination for some mid-winter sunshine. Average day time temperatures during these months are between 20oC and 30oC with little rainfall. It's best to avoid the summer months when temperatures can become unbearable.

What’s the dress code like?

Oman is a Muslim country, but there is a large expat population and so western dress is not unusual. Having said that, the culture is still fairly conservative, and visitors should be mindful of this. Men should have no problems wearing shorts and t-shirts, while women should ensure that arms are covered and legs are covered at least to below the knee, ideally to the ankle. Both men and women should be cautious of wearing Western swimwear on beaches, although this is fine in more touristy areas and around hotel pools.

Locals in Oman

Do I need a visa?

UK passport holders require a visa for Oman, which can be easily obtained on arrival. Non-UK passport holders or non-UK residents should contact the relevant embassies for individual requirements.

What kind of accommodation will we stay in?

Accommodation is generally of a very good standard in most places, from luxury resorts with spas to unique boutique hotels. If you’re feeling more adventurous, there are opportunities to spend a night under canvas, either wild camping or luxury glamping in en suite Bedouin tents.

Six Senses Oman

What activities are on offer?

Oman offers a whole range of activities, from boat trips to trekking, and for the more adventurous, canyoning and scuba diving. In Muscat you can spot dolphins and tour the city’s souks and palaces, while walking enthusiasts can explore the mountains with a trekking guide in Jebel Shams. Those with a thirst for adventure can try canyoning at Wadi Bani Kahlid or Wadi Banui Awf, and there are some very good scuba diving sites.

Omani Coast

Can I do a self-drive holiday?

It is possible to do a self-drive holiday in Oman. Driving is on the right, and the standard of roads is generally quite good. However we would always recommend holidaying with a guide to ensure that you get the most out of your trip.

Will alcohol be available?

Oman isn’t a dry country and you should have no problems getting alcoholic drinks in the larger international hotels, though smaller hotels and camps are unlikely to have an alcohol license. If you would like to be able to have a drink while staying outside of the bigger hotels, it is possible to buy a bottle of your preferred tipple in Duty Free.

Do you have any tips for visiting Oman?

Firstly, and most importantly, this is a conservative country so remember to be culturally sensitive.

If you try one dish, make it shuwa, slow cooked lamb or goat over aromatic spiced rice. It’s the Omani national dish and is absolutely delicious.

If you want to truly get off the beaten track, then a visit to the Empty Quarter is a must. 250,000 square miles of desert that is the home of the nomadic Bedouin, here you are unlikely to encounter a single other tourist.


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