The Wahiba Sands is a large desert area just four hours drive from Muscat.
Its geography is mixed: in the north are smaller dunes and wide flat areas, to the east the dunes pile up to 100 meters against the ocean, and in the south, at Barr El Hikman, is a vast expanse of flat sand dotted with treacherous salt flats and home to huge populations of migrating birds.
Experiencing the Wahiba Sands
A surprisingly wide array of flora and fauna call the sands home, as do about 3,000 Bedouin, some of whom you will get to meet when you visit the Wahiba.
There are also camps to spend the night in the desert, a remarkable experience that starts with a golden sunset, continues with a densely-starred sky and concludes with the soft light of a desert dawn.
Wahiba Sands to Muscat
Leaving the Wahiba Sands, a scenic drive passes between the contorted slopes of the eastern Hajar mountains and the shore, past the stunning water pools and shady canyon of Wadi Bani Khalid.
On the coast, Ras Al Junayz is a small sandy bay where green turtles come ashore to nest all year round (though the principal nesting season is July to September) and there is the opportunity to visit the turtles in the late evening or early morning.
From here you follow the coast, passing through small villages and towns scattered along the shoreline. The area is beautiful, despite clear signs of the damage caused by the 2007 cyclone Gonu.
Closer to Muscat, shining white beaches nestle under rocky overhangs, and a collapsed cave has created an impressive sinkhole.
Suggested itineraries featuring the Wahiba Sands
Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in the Wahiba Sands, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.
Map of the Wahiba Sands
Places & hotels on the map
Accommodation choices for the Wahiba Sands
We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit the Wahiba Sands. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.
Ideas for experiencing the Wahiba Sands
Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting the Wahiba Sands, and which use the best local guides.