What's included

  • 5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 3 dinners<br />
    5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 3 dinners
  • 6 nights’ accommodation in twin-room hotels & a Bedouin desert camp<br />
    6 nights’ accommodation in twin-room hotels & a Bedouin desert camp
  • All activities, from dune-bashing to wadi swimming, included. Local Flash Pack guide & driver
    All activities, from dune-bashing to wadi swimming, included. Local Flash Pack guide & driver
  • Max 14 Flashpackers
    Max 14 Flashpackers
  • Private airport transfer anytime on Day 1, country travel in private 4x4 jeeps<br />
    Private airport transfer anytime on Day 1, country travel in private 4x4 jeeps

Tackle the legendary Balcony Walk carved into a sheer cliff overlooking Oman’s Grand Canyon and buckle up for an off-road ride around hairpin bends to Mountain of the Sun, the highest peak in Oman. Channel your inner explorer with a self-guided dune hike to your Bedouin camp in the Wahiba Sands desert, and bed down beneath the stars. Take a sunrise stroll over rippling golden sands and jump into 4×4 jeeps for a thrilling spot of dune-bashing. Wild swim your way through the cool green pools of Oman’s spectacular wadis, and waterfall-jump in a hidden turquoise grotto. Head off-radar in bustling souks, ancient fords and remote Arabian villages, and discover the delights of Omani cuisine in the elegant capital Muscat

 

If you have an explorer within you that’s just busting to break loose, let Oman set you free. This ancient land of peach trees and pomegranate groves is less showy than neighbouring Dubai, and you can really feel it beating Nomadic soul. Our seven-day escape cuts to the heart of the Sultanate, with a whirlwind adventure that stretches across a diverse and dazzling topography. We kick things off with an enchanting courtyard dinner in the cosmopolitan capital of Muscat before heading out to Mountain of the Sun, Oman’s highest peak. We take on a nerve-jangling balcony walk along Jebel Shams – Oman’s answer to the Grand Canyon – to an abandoned village, with staggering views from every angle. We cruise over the rippling sands of the Wahiba Sands desert, with a self-guided GPS hike and dune-bashing in 4×4 jeeps. And we wild swim our way through a playground of spectacular wadi grottoes, framed by palm glades and rose-tinted cliffs. This is your opportunity to discover a country that’s riddled with history and culture, yet still relatively untouched by tourism. Join us to leap off waterfalls in a hidden turquoise cave and wander through remote olive groves with buzzards hovering overhead. Bed beneath the stars in a unique Bedouin camp in the heart of the desert and buckle up to drive across a sheer mountain pass that’s compared to Bolivia’s Death Road. Discover grand old forts, beautiful mosques and saffron-filled souks. Feast on cheese-stuffed flatbreads, marinated meats and platefuls of Oman’s prized dates. Friends, your Arabian adventure awaits: grab a cup of kadwa (Omani cardamom coffee) and head off-road in this country of dreams.

 

The Flash Pack promise

Here at Flash Pack, we’re committed to unique adventures that deliver great value for money. We pack our trips with epic experiences (unlike other companies, all activities are included), hand-pick stylish hotels and match you with like-minded people

 

  • Tackle the world-famous Balcony Walk over Oman’s Grand Canyon, with spectacular mountain views
  • Put your navigation skills to the test with a self-guided GPS hike through the rippling dunes of the Wahiba Sands desert
  • Sleep beneath the stars and dine by the campfire in a unique Bedouin camp surrounded by sand dunes
  • Take a sunrise stroll over the golden sands and go dune-bashing in 4x4s
  • Wild swim in a series of beautiful wadi grottoes, with turquoise waters, banana palms and sheer pink cliffs
  • Buckle up for a thrilling off-road drive up to Mountain of the Sun, Oman’s highest peak, and stay in a summit hotel perched by a dramatic gorge
  • Explore Wadi Shab park, a playground of emerald pools and waterfalls, and discover a magical hidden cave
  • Head off-radar in bustling souks and ancient forts, and discover the delights of Omani cuisine in cosmopolitan Muscat

Itinerary

Day 1: SUNDOWNERS IN MUSCAT

Take a private transfer from the airport to your palm-tree hotel by the Arabian Sea, complete with pools and a private beach. Meet your guide and fellow Flashpackers for virgin sundowner cocktails and head out to a traditional restaurant for your first taste of Omani cuisine

 

Flashpackers, welcome to Oman! Whatever time you touch down in Muscat, a private transfer awaits to whisk you off to your hotel overlooking the Arabian Sea. An ancient port hub wreathed by mountains, Muscat is one of the Middle East’s most enchanting cities. An antidote to glitzy Dubai, it retains its character as a key trading post, with colourful markets and a harbour dotted with traditional dhow boats. A skyscraper ban means the horizon is dominated by a sweep of pristine white villas, framed by towering peaks and the glistening Omani coast. This is a modern capital; you’ll find plenty of elegant cafés and hip pomegranate bars (yes that’s a thing). And yet evidence of a rich history lies on every street corner, along with bright bursts of bougainvillea.

 

Settle into your new home before we meet at sunset for a refreshing lemon mint drink. Oman is not a dry country, but alcohol isn’t widely available, and the alternative options are so delicious that it’s almost worth pausing the booze for (should you fancy a brief detox). Get to know your fellow Flashpackers and guide as you watch Muscat glow pink on the evening horizon, with calls to prayer echoing from nearby mosques. Later, we’ll head out to one of Oman’s best-loved restaurants with a leafy, lantern-lit courtyard. Tuck into Omani favourites such as spicy shuwa – a parcel of tender lamb wrapped in palm fronds and cooked underground – Arabic bread, fish biryani with yoghurt and huge platefuls of wine-coloured dates. Dig in and fuel up for the adventure ahead.

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Get to know your fellow Flashpackers over dinner

Dine at a cosy local restaurant

Arrive in port city of Muscat

Arrive early to explore the capital

Mooch along the charming waterfront

Look out across the Arabian Sea

Day 2: A BUCKET-LIST ROAD TRIP

Visit Muscat’s Grand Mosque before embarking on a 4×4 road trip through the Hajar Mountains. Stop at a beautiful fort town and cruise off-road over a steep cliffside pass known as Oman’s answer to Death Road in Bolivia. Have lunch at a picturesque Arabian village nestled in the peaks before arriving at Jebel Shams – the highest mountain in the country – and dine at your retreat in the middle of nowhere

 

We’ll kick off this morning by exploring one of Muscat’s most famous sights: the magnificent Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque. A masterstroke in modern architecture, this vast sandstone beauty dominates the city skyline and is one of the only mosques in the country to allow entry to non-Muslim visitors (apart from on Fridays). It’s home to the world’s second largest chandelier covered in 600,000 Swarovski crystals, and everywhere you go, you’ll see beautiful hand-carved mosaic tiling. You may well be approached by Omani women, who can tell you all about local culture while selling you coffee and dates.

 

Next up, we’re travelling west, with a ravishing road trip that leads up through the Hajar Mountains. Jump aboard a fleet of 4x4s and watch the urbane charms of Muscat give way to a remote and arid landscape that harks back to biblical times. This is an entirely different side to Oman: a land of olive trees, rose fields and tiny sandstone hamlets. You’ll feel like you’re stepping back in time as we weave up into the cool hills; a place of solace for Omanis during the heat of summer. After about an hour and a half, we’ll stop to explore the spectacular fort town of Nakhl, surrounded by date palms and the Ain a’Thawwarah hot springs.

 

We’ll then continue upwards through the Wadi Bani Awf, and one of Oman’s most dramatic mountain passes. Often compared to Bolivia’s notorious Death Road, this heart-racing stint of off-road driving takes us along steep, cliffside terrain, with hairpin bends and extraordinary views from every angle. After 90 minutes, we’ll stop for lunch at Balad Sayt, a fairy tale-like Arabian village lying in the shadow of the pistes, with sun-baked mud homes stretching across a canvas of emerald terraces. We’ll admire this picturesque pit stop before continuing for two and a half hours over the spine of Hajar past Al Hamra – a beautiful 400-year-old town – and onto Jebel Shams; Mountain of the Sun. Oman’s highest peak looms at 3,000 metres, and our alpine retreat lies nearby, in an unparalleled patch of natural beauty. Perched on a craggy rock, it offers a breath-taking window over Wadi Nakhr, Oman’s very own Grand Canyon.

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Stop for lunch by the emerald terraces of Balad Sayt

Head up into the Hajar Mountains

Cruise upwards through the mountains

This is one scenic drive

Explore the exotic fort town of Balad Sayt

Take in the epic views across Jebel Shams

There are amazing mountains around every turn

And sandstones hamlets along the way

Pop by the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque this morning

Home to the world’s second largest chandelier

Day 3: LIFE ON THE EDGE

Tackle the world-famous balcony walk along the rim of Wadi Nakhr, with sensational views of Oman’s Grand Canyon. Jeep over to Al Hamra for lunch and explore the tiny ochre-coloured village of Misfat al Abriyyi nearby. Arrive in the regional capital Nizwa and explore its lively restaurants by night

 

Oman is famed for its fantastic coffee; a richly textured concoction known as kahwa that’s often flavoured with cardamom. Load up on the good stuff this morning before we tackle the world-famous balcony walk around the rim of Wadi Nakhr. This cliff-edge route covers a four-hour loop from Khateem village to the abandoned hamlet of As Sab and back, and it’s nothing short of sensational. The giant chasm of Wadi Nakhr acts a stage onto the natural world, unveiling a dramatic panorama of giant chalky ravines and rust-coloured cliffs. As the name suggests, the pathway is carved into the canyon itself, banding itself around the edge of the gorge with sheer rock faces directly above and below the trail. The solitude here is unbeatable; birds of prey swoop across the wispy blue skies of the ravine, and each new step brings massive views that even the best cameras can’t do justice to. Marvel at a series of geological formations and the eerie stone huts of As Sab, suspended in the middle of nowhere.

 

Back at base, we’ll jeep on over to the centuries-old town of Al Hamra (an hour’s drive away) for lunch and explore nearby Misfat al Abriyyi, a medieval-style village of winding alleyways and ochre homes hidden in a thick carpet of banana palms and bougainvillea bushes. From here, we’ll jeep an hour onwards past ancient juniper trees and wild olive groves to the regional capital of Nizwa. One of the oldest cities in the Sultanate, Nizwa is home to a 17th Century fort and a bustling souk that radiates colour and energy. This was once a crossroads for Oman’s traders crossing from the Arabian sea to the mountains and vice versa, an honour signified by its new double-arched entry gate. We’ll settle in for dinner here at a local restaurant, so seize the opportunity to try out more of Oman’s flavour-packed cuisine. From BBQ fish to moreish cheese-stuffed flatbreads and marinated sandwiches, there are plenty of delicious local delicacies to devour. Then wash it all down with a glass of laban, a yoghurt-style buttermilk drink with hints of pistachio. This is the life!

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Tackle the legendary Balcony Walk

Hike along the edge of Wadi Nakhr

The pathway is carved into the mountain

Take in sweeping views of Oman’s Grand Canyon

Meet some friendly mountain goats along the way

The views here stretch on forever

Enjoy a well-deserved lunch at Misfat al Abriyyi

Then head on to the ancient city of Nizwa

Start your day with some kahwa coffee

End it with an Omanian feast in Nizwa

Important notes

Fly into and out of: Muscat International Airport

You’ll need a visa to visit Oman: check your country requirements and apply for a tourist visa before you travel

Your passport needs to be valid for six months from the point of entry into Oman

The hotels we stay at in Oman are often quite basic and not up to Flash Pack’s usual high standards. If you have been on another Flash Pack adventure before, you may be surprised at the level of accommodation on this trip. However, en-suite rooms will always be clean and comfortable, and they are among the best available in the areas we visit. Also, they often boost spectacular locations (e.g. the summit of Jebel Shams, overlooking Oman’s Grand Canyon)

Please dress conservatively to visit the Grand Mosque in Muscat: women will need to cover their heads

Alcohol isn’t widely available in Oman, although you can find it in larger city hotels and restaurants

The heat in Oman can be extreme, especially in the desert: remember to always bring plenty of water, sun cream and protective clothing

If you have a fear of heights, the Balcony Walk at Jebel Shams is probably not for you!

Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. These changes can happen with little notice due to availability, poor weather, seasonal changes, or other circumstances beyond our control. From time to time we may also make changes to your itinerary to try out new ideas and keep things fresh.

We take safety very seriously on Flash Pack adventures, click here to learn more.

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