Before you jump the plane and head to Oman make sure you are well prepared. You should know well before hand what kind of travel are you going in for. For example, if you are visiting on food tourism, then a fork and knife would suffice. Most likely you are not.
Travelling to Oman has can be divided into Adventure, luxury and sightseeing. All of which have their certain need. Keep in mind that Amazon does not deliver in Oman, REI does not operate here (or any outdoor specialized shop for that matter) and a waterproof camera would cost you 1.5-2x as much should you decide to buy one here. Oh, and did I mention the outrageous medical costs if you get sick here?
hold your horses and read along here for a list of what you need to bring BEFORE coming to Oman.
What’s covered in this page:
- Travel Gear
- What to wear in Oman
Best Travel Gear (including insurance)
For you travel to Oman you need to keep three things in mind. Mobility, visuals & aesthetics. Simple as that.
With that being said, there will be plenty of mud on your trip (during the rainy seasons) and you are guaranteed to get wet (especially in the wadis). For those reasons, I stress two things in all of my adventure travel guides. If you haven;t come across them yet, I will state them again:
#1 You will need a waterproof bag
#2 You need the RIGHT shoes
someone reading this will ignore my advice and will soon find himself and all his belogning get super wet on of the adventure tours.
Don’t be that guy.
What To Pack for Oman
If you are in the US, I recommend the REI dry sack to keep your items in it when visiting Wadi Shab to avoid having your valuable ruined. This is the one that I had for the past year.
Otherwise you can find the shopping list below from Amazon (US/UK/INT)
I recommend these shoes as they would be ideal for your adventures within Oman. In my opinion, they are the best shoes on the market. I have seen the ultimate waterproof sneakers made on Indiegogo but they are still not available to the mass market.
LED Foldable-Water Bottle
This is literally the smartest thing ever. I fell in love with this bottle so hard when I saw it that I went straight to the supplier and ordered a sample. I was ready to sell these myself!
After some time with it I decided not too & focus on this guide instead. All I can say is, you probably won’t be using this bottle everyday in your hometown: it’s not that amazing.
However when you are travelling through the airport and want to have your bottle with you this is your go to . It’s light, compact and easy to fold for. It’s literally the best bottle for travelling! It even has a light for camping. It will come useful when camping at Wahiba sands.
GoPro Hero 6 w/LCD Screen Camera – waterproof
This is the only camera I will recommend.
Sure, your Cannon Rebel SL1 or Sony A7 II is nice. But what use will it be to you when you are paragliding down Zighy Bay to the hotel reception. Or how about when you take the day off to go snorkeling in Muscat? You might as well just forget it entirely when visiting Wadi Shab or The Snake Gorge. Your camera is ass good as your iPhone X; inside of you dry-sack.
The GoPro Hero 7 will give you the best underwater shots for you Instagram. Being an owner of the GoPro 6, I am consdering to switch over to the latest edition after I have what this camera can do underwater.
The 5 & 6 were the first underwater releases by GoPro that were worth buying. The issues faced by their previous version (fogging, no LCD screen, wide angle lens) are now problems of the past. The Go Pro Hero 7 refines on the improvements of the 5 & 6 to give you the best underwater photography possible.
Get your Insta-worthy shots here.
Do I really need to recommend those? fine.
Many travel bloggers headed to Oman would recommend you purchase slipper, wear slipper or bring slippers. I understand where the recommendation is coming from but i tell you its albeit unnecessary.
Of course if you visit the Wadi wearing your Nike Free shoes you would also recommend slippers given how inappropriate your shoe choice was.
Readers of this blog don’t have to worry because they will be wearing these shoes.
Forecast: It will be bright and sunny in Muscat 11.5 months of the year.
Don’t forget your shades.
If you skipped here then I implore you to read the above.
Expect to be camping at some point in either Musandam or Wahiba Sands. Unless you are travelling solo then it would be wise to pack some speakers to set the atmosphere. If you are travelling solo, it won’t harm as you will meet people at the desert camp. Also, email me for any question you might have on solo travel.
I’ve use these portable speakers while travelling & during college parties, pool parties & desert camping. I even used them as a stereo substitute for my rental car in Morocco.
The neighbors hate it but the travelers love it.
Time is money, and its 2019. A smart watch is only right for the hip nomad traveler you are. Is there anything else to recommend then the Sport Band Apple Watch?
Camel Oasis style guide coming soon.
The reason I have not included a backpack recommendation above is because I own all of the gears that I recommend. With that being said, I do not own a travel backpack nor do I have any intention on buying one any time soon. Hence, for transparency reasons, I will not recommend one.
Travel Insurance for Oman
If there is one insurance I recommend when travelling to Oman it would be World Nomads.
This is the best insurance for the activities you are about to engage with in Oman. It also helps that it is made for travelling nomads with adventure in their soul.For more Information I wrote and article on why World Nomads is the best insurance to buy.
DON’T travel to Oman without insurance. It’s not worth it.
Otherwise you could lose thousands of dollars in insurance claims.
Travel Resources Online
The following will cover the best travel resources online there is when it comes to travel to the Middle East & Asia. If you are looking at what platforms to use, then this is my recommendation for your Oman related travel.
I fly an average of 35,000 miles in a year. I have been on every plane you can think of in Europe and flown multiple American airlines (not a fan of Spirit). Budget airlines are my go too in Europe as I year pause at London on the way to or from Los Angeles. In the US i fly full price and in Asia it doesn’t really matter to me as flights tend to be cheap. The question is, what should you fly when you come in to Oman and where should you book it?
Flying from the EU
I recommend flying British Airways, Turkish Airlines or Oman Air.
Oman Air for direct flights
Asia Pacific & The US
Emirates Airlines are hands down my favourite for long distance travel. I flew budget once on a 10 hours flight and I won’t be making the same mistake again.
Where to book?
I have used many airline travel platform and this is my list of Top 3 platforms to use in this particular order:
Similar to my convictions with Accommodation (just below) I choose my flight providers accordingly. If I am in the US, I start all my searches on Google flights then I switch to Kayak for the actual booking. In Europe, Skyscanner is my first point of research followed by Kayak for further confirmation.
However Momondo is the exception when travelling within Asia & the Middle East. It just works better.
Momondo always seems to find me the best deals in the Middle East and shows me what days are best to travel. Momondo find the small time booking sites that are mostly left out or hidden deep within search results.
Car Rental in Oman
This is an essential when visiting Oman. Oman is a commuter country: meaning that a bus ride probably won’t get you far. In fact, it might even ruin a traveler’s experience.
The case being so, I suggest you rent a car before arriving to Oman as there is a high probability they will be sold out (especially in Salalah during summer). The only thing you need to know before hand is what type of vehicle you need:
- Sedan (small or mid-sized car)
- 4×4 (four wheel drive, SUV)
Both vechile types are okay so long as you have planned before hand where you will be going. If driving to Wahiba sands, Jebel Shams, or Jebel Akhdar, you definitely need a 4×4 car. You will find that the Toyata SUV’s are popular in Oman, followed by the Nissan Patrol. In all other cases you will be fine with a sedan.
I recommend using Rentalcars for car booking. I find that they offer the easiest way of finding cars in Oman, as indivual providers might be out of stock. Look out for the 4×4 marked listings.
Accommodation in Oman
AGODA (period). Don’t @ me, don’t call me and DON’T try to change my mind! Agoda is the best.
Still I have the frequent traveler status on Booking.com.
Reasons why I recommend Agoda over Booking, Expedia, Hotels or any other resource, even though I have used Booking religiously in the past 7 years, is that Agoda is the best for the Middle East & Asia.
In the past 70% of my travel revolved heavily on Western European countries & American cities. Nonetheless, when I had moved to China and traveled to Southeast Asia or in the Middle East, I mainly used Agoda.
Reason being is that Agoda offers the best deals in the region.While Booking rules the west, Agoda is king on the east. Agoda offers you:
- The best prices in Asia
- Agoda will refund you the difference if you can find a lower price
- Agoda compares and even offers you rates from other websites
- The most selection in Asia with over 1.8 million properties worldwide
- Agoda has the most localization for the Middle East
You will find that most Asia related travel blogs would only recommend Agoda. So if you are travelling to Oman, make sure you book your Oman hotels here.
The Exception- Anantara Hotels
You will find on my Salalah & Jebel Akhdar travel guides hotel recommendations where I swear by the Anantara hotels in both areas. I even made an Anantara hotel review for Salalah & Jebel Akhdar.
Anantara has two of the best hotels in Oman. The service is exceptional and the experience is unparalleled. None other than Six Senses Zighy Bay can compare. (opens in a new tab)”>Anantara has two of the best hotels in Oman. The service is exceptional and the experience is unparalleled. None other than Six Senses Zighy Bay can compare. (opens in a new tab)”>Anantara has two of the best hotels in Oman. The service is exceptional and the experience is unparalleled. None other than Six Senses Zighy Bay can compare.
The reason I suggest booking on their website is that they offer the best prices and deals on their website. Early booking gets you a hefty discount as well. I remember spending $1,100 for a one night stay in Al Baleed by Anantara on Agoda only to find out after that I could’ve saved around $300 from the main website..ouch!
Want to stay at my one of my top 5 hotel picks? Make sure you get the best price guaranteed.
Alternatively, If you are not seeking hotels and would prefer another accommodation for any reason, I recommend looking for Airbnb in these locations:
- Muscat: The Wave, Muscat hills, Athaibah, bawsher.. in this order
- Sur: literally in anywhere by the water
- Salalah: Avoid al baleed unless you stay in Al Baleed by Anantara which makes it worth the added travel time
- Musandam: I would consider camping over Airbnb.
Airbnb would be convenient and I don’t doubt it being a comfortable choice when visiting Oman. Although I feel like it might take from the Oman luxury experience, if that is what you are going for.
Avoid – Hostelworld
I have only used Hostelworld during my study abroad semester in Rome, mainly to travel to Budapest & Amsterdam. Despite being a hotel kinda guy, I have to stay Hostelworld is a good platform for hostel bookings.
But I ask you to avoid it all costs in Oman.
Here why, Oman is relatively on the pricier side, the country has a high standard for luxury, and Omanis don’t like staying in hostels due to liking privacy. Which is why I was not shook when I found 3 properties in all of Oman: in remote areas to say the least.
There are 2 in Salalah, one is $130 so obviously a hotel desperate to promote its business, and the other is what looks down a run-down establishment with 3 bed basically touching each other. I did not even bother looking at the third property in Nizwa.
My advice is: don’t do it. If you are looking for something cheap the cheapest you will get can afford you a comfortable hotel with your own privacy. Don’t be misguided by the term hostel meaning the cheapest accommodation there is, as that’s not the case in Oman.
I do not have it in my heart to recommend any accommodation on hostel world. If you do end up staying in one of the properties please share your experience below.
I strongly suggest booking your trip with these companies in mind. I have personally used them in the past and am using them today for a reason. At the time of posting this I proudly say that these are the best recommendations for travel to Oman. Make sure you follow my travel guides for detailed information on how travel within Oman.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, in which i will make a small commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you, . I have personally used all the companies above in my 7 years as a world traveler and Omani local and I recommend them because they have made my travels better. I have used other companies as in the past but I do not recommend them as I have not been satisfied with the level of service offered during unexpected change of plans. If you are ready to book your trip and would like to support CamelOasis in some way, using these links is one way to do that. Please do not spend any money you feel like any of the above recommendations do not fit you. If you have any questions about any of the above recommendation,kindly e-mail me at [email protected] & I will get back to you within 48 hours