- Travel Info
This exceptional trekking holiday in Oman, explores the most dramatic sections of the Al Hajar mountains which run the length of Oman’s northern coastline, rising above the blue waters of the Gulf to a height of 3000 metres. Starting out amongst the Western Hajar Mountains, we follow rugged trails between picturesque mountain villages, each with its groves of date palms and intricately terraced fields. Camping out on the high Sharaf al Alamayn Plateau and on the Sayq Plateau, we visit the high point of Oman at Jabal Shams and enjoy far-reaching views across a landscape of jagged ridge-lines and intervening canyons. A night in a comfortable hotel at the former capital of Nizwa, with time to explore the town’s forts and market streets provides a welcome break, before we complete a 2-day trek across the Eastern Hajar Mountains – which ends conveniently at a camp on the beach. With its superb trekking, year-round sunshine and welcoming people, Oman is the Middle East’s best kept secret.
This is not a sustained trekking holiday, but a combination of shorter and relatively easy walks combined with two challenging classic 2-day routes, that are amongst the best treks in Oman. We will be following mountain tracks
across sand, scree and bare rock, with sections of stepped pathway leading to ancient and sometimes abandoned villages. Walking for between 4 and 10 hours on 5 of the days, our route will take us into deep wadis and across airy
ridges. We will usually be following routes that have been used for generations by the local people – villagers, hunters and shepherds. Some of the pathways are exposed and there is some easy scrambling on day 4 and day 5. The
altitudes attained during this holiday are unlikely to cause problems in respect of acclimatisation. Oman is prohibitively hot for much of the year and we choose to visit when it is at its coolest. However, we are still likely to find day-time temperatures of between 25°C / 77°F and 32°C / 90°F or even a little higher and sun protection and adequate hydration are important considerations. 4 wheel drive support vehicles carry all our equipment from camp to camp but, as we only have a small local crew, we will be expected to help put up and take down tents at campsites. There are some long trekking days and also on account of the prevailing temperatures.
7 days trekking ,3 nights hotels, 6 nights camping, ,
Max altitude – 2600m,
All meals included,
Join in Muscat
Day 1. Arrive in Muscat
Arrive in Muscat the transfer will be provided from Muscat Airport to the hotel. This transfer is normally morning time and a representative of our local guide will accompany the group on the 20 minute journey to the hotel. Majan Views package services begin with lunch at the hotel. After a few hours of rest and the chance to relax by the pool, or to walk to the nearby beach (there are many coffee shops to visit overlooking the sea), we will be ready to do some exploring. At around 2.30 we will have a trip briefing and then take a tour by coach of Muscat city. There will be a visit to the Sultan’s Palace followed by a walk along the corniche to explore Muttrah Souk, a great place to buy traditional items. We finish the day back at our hotel for an evening meal. Meals included: Lunch, dinner (L, D)
Day 2. Drive and trek to Jabal Shams
After an early breakfast, we have a quick visit to Muscat’s Grand Mosque, before setting off in our 4-wheel-drive vehicles for the drive north towards Barka and Nakhal Fort which were built on a large rock to help defend the farms of the plain. We then continue to the Western Hajar Mountains and enter Wadi Bani Awf. Leaving the blacktop road we quickly engage 4- wheel-drive as we journey through this wadi, lined with date farms pools of water. This is a steep and fun offroading experience and after one hour we reach a narrow gorge that is the entrance to the pretty village of Bilad Sait. Here we will have lunch and then a short walk through the gorge and around the village where there will be plenty of opportunities for photos. We then continue our off road drive up Jabal Shams, the highest point in Oman at 2994 metres. Tonight we set the first of our wild camps ( 2000 m) within view of Jabal Shams summit.
(B, L, D).
Day 3. Walk the balcony trail
After breakfast and a short 10 minute drive we enjoy breathtaking views of Oman’s Grand Canyon and Nakhl
Village which is more than a kilometre below us. We should be able to spot the route of today’s classic walk along the
edge of the canyon. Setting off from Al Kateen Village, we follow the ‘balcony trail’ along the mountain’s edge to an
abandoned village, which clings to the rocks and is completely hidden from view, both from above and from below. Just beyond the village, we can see the traditional farm terracing where locals used to produce their food and a
short walk further takes us to the small lake that feeds the terracing. We stop and enjoy a few snacks before the walk
back along the balcony trail offers more breathtaking views of the canyon. We then set off in our 4WD vehicles down the mountain to Wadi Ghul and Nakhr Village where we will take lunch. This allows us to view the canyon from the bottom up, which is equally as dramatic and stunning, as this journey takes us through more than half a billion years of geological time. We then drive to Tanoof, in Jabal Akhdar, and enjoy the second of our wild camps. Walking time today is 4 hours on easy terrain at around 1900. metres (B, L, D).
Day 4 – Sayq Plateau
Today is the first of our 2-day challenging treks. After an early start and a hearty breakfast, we trek straight from camp to begin our 7-8-hour trek across Jabal Akhdar up the Al Fra,a Valley and onto the canyon rim. The trek follows an old donkey path. During the walk there will be some easy but prolonged scrambling as we pick our way through the challenging terrain of Oman finest trekking region. Taking a picturesque lunch on the cliff tops, we
have panoramic views across the settlement of Al Hijir. With a final wadi walk to reach village, we may be lucky enough to meet some of the village elders before transferring by vehicle (approx 20 mins) to our beautiful wild camp on the fertile lands, where we hope to spot desert wildlife amongst the rich covering of juniper trees (B, L, D)
Day 5. Trek on Jabal Akhdar
Another early start, as we break camp and driving approximately 30 minutes to the start of todays walk. With a well-paced start, we reach the Shnout region of the plateau and begin our descent into the fabulous Wadi Muaydeen. With 7 to 8 hours of trekking, it is one of the most spectacular wadi walks in Oman. At times will be on some exposed paths as we head dwon into hidden gardens and between photo worthy rock formations. As we take a steep descent onto the wadi floor, we even encounter local Omani men tending to their gardens. With a rocky ascent, we follow the rim of the wadi to meet our vehicles and take a short drive to the oasis town of Nizwa (approx 45mins) to our hotel, which has stunning views of low,nice-coloured hills behind and jagged white hills in front. This is a perfect place to relax at the end of a long day’s walk with a welcome shower and soft bed. In the evening we will have Omani meal try some good local food before collapsing in our beds (B,L,D)
Day 6. Explore Nizwa & Wadi Bani Khalid
Situated alongside two wadis, Nizwa, the former capital city of Oman, is a fertile sea of green with an oasis of date
plantations stretching out 8 kilometres (5 miles) from the town. Today, Nizwa is still the largest and most important
town in the interior of Oman and is noted for its 17th century fort and atmospheric souks, full of the silversmiths’ art,
especially ornately engraved khanjars (curved daggers worn on ceremonial occasions by all Omani men). After lunch in a local restaurant, we make the three and a half hour drive into the Eastern Hajar Mountains and set up our camp in popular Wadi Bani Khalid, famous for its natural beauty.
(B, L, D) (The Camp will be near the village )
Day 7. Trek across the Selma Plateau
This morning we start our second classic 2-day trek that takes us on ancient trading routes up and over the Selma Plateau and down to the sea at the Gulf of Oman.This is not a technical trek, but it is a long traverse and we will start our trek at very first light. Starting at around 650 metres, we walk through the lush coolness of this popular and breathtaking wadi, ascending gradually to a high point at 2100 metres. The rugged landscape of the Selma Plateau provides a stark contrast to the greenness of the wadi and offers panoramic views out over the stunning Ash Shariqiyah Mountains. After a trek of 8 to 9 hours on relatively easy terrain, we set up a wild camp on the plateau at 1700 metres and settle down for another night of stargazing. (B, L, D)
Day 8. Descend to Wadi Tiwi
Another early start, as we set off across the rugged plateau landscape for 4 hours. Route finding is vague in places and we have lunch in the shade before we start the steep descent into the lush coolness of Wadi Tiwi with its dramatic rock faces and palms. We finish the route at the small village of Swee, where there are some excellent swimming pools, a great plaice to wash off the trail dust, before walking the final easy stretch to our rendezvous with the transport. It is then just a 40 minute drive to our camp at a stunning coastal White beach. Walking today 6 to 7
hours on relatively easy terrain. (B, L, D)
Day 9. Visit Wadi Shab, Back to Muscat
There is an option this morning to chill out and stay on the beach, with the chance to swim and snorkel in the sea, or head to nearby Wadi Shab, just 15 minutes away by car. A gentle 1-hour stroll up this beautiful wadi brings us to more fresh water swimming pools. Here we can relax and swim in the pools and explore a hidden cave. We will drive back via the beach to pick up anyone who opted to stay and then set off on the return journey to Muscat, stopping off for picnic lunch sink hole. We should be back at the hotel in Muscat by 3.00 pm which will give us time to rest and
pack before going out for a dinner at a local restaurant. We will return to the hotel after dinner . (B,L,D)
Day 10. Depart from Muscat
Land Only package services end with breakfast. After breakfast, there will be a single group transfer to Muscat