Friday, 31 July 2015

19 Hidden Gems In The Desert Just Waiting For You


What are some of the best travel locations in Oman that most people have never heard about? Where are they and how to find them? 

There are an endless choices of activities and places to visit for every type of traveller. Whether seeking to indulge on a gorgeous beach vacation, getting involved in a number of unique adventures or discovering cultural wonders, the treasures of Oman will not disappoint you.

A “Wadi” is a valley or ravine that is dry except during the monsoons, when they fill with water, forming oases of cool water and vegetation. Oman has several. In this article, we will show you 19 hidden gems in the desert just waiting for you:

1 - Wadi Al Khoud: situated in Wilayat AlSeeb, Muscat, is considered one of the largest wadi basins in the Sultanate.

2 - Wadi Al Arbiyeen: one of the most beautiful wadis in Muscat. It is situated 3 kilometres away from Wilayat Qurayat on the road leading to the villages of Fins and Bamah.

3 - Wadi Ad Dayqah: one of the most easy - to - reach tourist attractions located near Muscat, about 90 kilometres from Wadi Aday. Visitors can cross this wadi and explore the Omani mountains and their natural diversity.

4 - Wadi Darbat: located in Dhofar. This wadi carves its way through hills and highlands until it reaches Khawr Ruri, where it empties into the Arabian Gulf. During autumn, the wadi's water descending from the mountains forms magnificent waterfalls, cascading from a height of up to 30 metres.

5 - Wadi Al Abyad ( White Valley ): this wadi is about 30 km (1.85 miles) away from the main Muscat - Sohar road, where it extends west of Wilayat Nakjl, Al Batinah Region. Characterised by its abundant fresh water springs and year - round streams.

6 - Wadi Bani Awf ( Suspended Road ): if you love excitement, adventure, and winding mountain roads, you'll find a challenge in Wadi Bani Awf, Al Batinah region. To traverse this road, you must have a four - wheel drive and the driver must be an expert in mountain driving.

7 - Wadi Bani Kharous: one of the best known Omani wadis. A visitor to Wadi Bani Kharous is attracted by its fascinating flora and fauna and beautiful landscapes. You will be curious to discover unknown sights in its various villages.

8 - Wadi Al Qahfi: located nearly 50 km ( 31 miles ) from Wilayat Mahdah, Al Buraymi Governorate. Water flows most of the year and is distinguished by its fresh quality.

9 - Wadi Damm: located near Al Ayn village, Wilayat Ibri, Ad Dhahirah Region, and is about 45 km ( 28 miles ) from Ibri city. It is a seasonal wadi, dry much of the year. It relies on the rain which gathers in its water ponds. This wadi is remarkable for its characteristic rocky formation sculpted by erosion.

10 - Wadi Danak ( Fida ): this wadi originates in Fida town in Dhank Province, specifically in Al Khili, an area so steep it is considered a water reservoir for Yanqul and Shuab wadis, whose waters cascade down the face of the mountains. Wadi Danak's water runs all year round and is home to a multitude of birds.

11 - Wadi Muayden: is in Birkat Al - Mawz, A'Dakhiliyah Region, and one of the biggest and fullest wadis in Oman year round. It is a gateway to Al Jabal Al Akhdhar ( The Green Mountain ) and is home to Al Muayden village. Trekking fans can reach Al Jabal Al Akhdhar through this wadi. 

12 - Wadi ArRaydha: on the way to this valley the visitor passes many fossils and ruins that speak of civilisations past. The spring rains bring beauty to the landscape, with an enchanting, aromatic mix of wild flowers and herbs. You get glimpses of animals grazing on the lush grass in some seasons.

13 - Wadi AlShab: this wadi is located in Tiwi, part of Sur in the Ash Sharqiyah region. It lies 140 kilometres ( 87 miles ) from Muscat on the Qurayat - Sur Coastal Road. Fresh water cascading from tops of the mountains meet the briny sea water on its banks, creating an environmental diversity unique to this wadi.

14 - Wadi Bani Khalid: located 203 kilometres ( 126 miles ) from Muscat. Trake the Bidbid - Sur Road in the Ash Sharqiyah region, which forks into a side road leading to Bani Khalid Governorate and then weaves up across the eastern AlHajar Mountains to Bida village deep in the mountains. There you can enjoy the spectacular views of the fertile valley with its spreading trees and abundant water that tumbles down as waterfalls in some areas to form natural pools of water.

15 - Wadi Tiwi: located in Tiwi, Sur Governorate in the Ash Sharqiyah region, it is 2 km ( 1.24 miles ) from Wadi AlShab and spreads over an area of 36 km ( 22.37 miles ) at the foot of the mountain village of Mibam. You can see the valley below, and the azure waters of the sea from some elevated locations.

16 - Wadi At Ta'iyeen: located in the Ash Sharqiyah Province. It extends over 80 km ( 49.71 miles ) across AlHajar Mountain of Bidbid - Sur Road, 92 km ( 57.17 miles ) from Muscat. It is an expansive valley dotted with rocks acacia trees and small hills overlooked by the mountains on both sides. 

17 - Wadi Dimma: located in the Dimma and at Tayyin Governorate ( The Ash Sharqiyah province ) and is known as the Wadi Al Hajir, location of the natural Al Hajir Park.

18 - Wadi Andam: here you'll find a seamless amalgamation of trees and rocky formations that will steep your senses in total serenity, rejuvenation and relaxation.

19 - Wadi An Nakhr: waterfalls cascading from Jabal Shams ( Sun Mountain ) form this valley. This valley contains a village that bears its name and which can be seen from the top of Jabal Shams.

Wadis form a unique environmental system characterised by variety, diversity, and a wealth of natural attractions. Within this fertile environment, people have lived in the wadis (valleys) of Oman for thousands of years. 

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