Trip Overview

Meet AdventureWomen in amazing Oman in 2020 to travel on a cultural odyssey through the Middle East discovering Oman’s vibrant cities, mountains, and desert landscapes. Meet women entrepreneurs and artisans, visit historic sites, stroll through souqs, and indulge in the best of Omani cuisine.

Join fellow adventurers to discover Oman, a friendly country in the Middle East filled with emerald oases, bustling local markets, and an ancient history that rivals its neighbors! Oman remains authentic and off-the-beaten path; it’s the perfect adventure destination. Flourishing for over 1,000 years, Oman is modernizing, but at a pace that is mindful of heritage preservation.

Ahlan wa Sahlan! Welcome! Oman’s oceanside capital of Muscat extends a warm greeting to you and the other unique women sharing this fascinating cultural odyssey. A visit to the Grand Mosque is a perfect introduction into Omani craftsmanship and Islamic culture. You’ll then have the honor of meeting women entrepreneurs in the Sidab Women’s Association and not-for-profit Omani Heritage Gallery, and Nawal Al Hooti, a designer of Omani haute couture. While here, explore the exotic House of Amouage, makers of some of the most expensive perfumes in the world, and shop Old Muscat’s monumental Muttrah Souq.

Escape the bustle of the Muscat and head for Oman’s mountains! Following a sporting (aka bumpy!) ride to reach Al Hamra, explore its thriving date plantations and the ancient, crenulated Nakhal Fort and Bahla Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the high cliffs of Jebel Shams, discover wadis where the Damask Rose grows to produce its famous rose water, then take in the view from the highest peak in Oman.

On your visit to Bait Al Safa, experience Omani heritage by walking through this living museum set in a traditional mud brick home. Continue your cultural tour in Oman as you walk through two mountain villages of Jebel Akhdar, which overlooks the ancient irrigation system known as al Falaj.

Spend one heavenly night out “glamping” (luxurious camping) in the Wahiba Sands, walking the enormous dunes to catch the sunset and get swept away by this desert retreat. In the palm-lined oasis of Wadi Bani Kalid, stop to dip your feet in its deep emerald pool on your way to the protected sea turtle nesting grounds of Ras al Jinz. Here you might have the chance to observe a female turtle laying her eggs.

Return to Muscat via Wadi Shab, a spectacular, narrow mountain range with turquoise pools and waterfalls surrounded by palm trees, sandstone walls, and Omani date plantations. Stop to enjoy a delicious picnic lunch and swim to your heart’s content! Over a special farewell dinner, reminisce about the surprises you encountered and your favorite spots in Oman. Celebrate with your fellow Adventure Women how fortune brought each of you together for a small-group adventure in this special Middle Eastern destination that will be proudly remembered by all of you for years to come!

Oman’s unique blend of modernity and ancient history, traditional craftsmanship, cuisine, and peaceful way of life make this country the ideal Middle Eastern travel destination.

Main Attractions

  • Visit mosques, meet women entrepreneurs, and enjoy Omani cuisine as you learn about Oman’s colorful Middle Eastern culture
  • Travel through diverse landscapes from date plantations to desert sands, mountains to wadis, meeting local people along the way
  • Learn about Oman’s history, lifestyles, and traditions while visiting UNESCO World Heritage sites and iconic landmarks

What You'll See and Do

  • Anthropology
  • Cooking Class
  • Cultural Exploration
  • Glamping
  • Natural Hot Springs
  • Nesting Turtles
  • Swimming
  • UNESCO Site
  • Walking
  • Women-To-Women Exchanges

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Muscat
You will be picked up at the Muscat airport by your guide and transferred to your hotel. Enjoy a lively welcome dinner as you get to know your fellow travelers this evening. Share stories and learn about why each woman on your trip is excited to explore Oman!
Dinner

Overnight: Park Inn

Day 2

Muscat
Explore the Grand Mosque in Muscat. Completed in 2001, the Grand Mosque is a beautiful building which shows that modern craftsmen have retained the skills necessary to create a wonderful traditional environment. The carpet in the mosque is one of the largest carpets in the world, and was hand-crafted by women. Women visiting the mosque are required to wear head scarves. You need to wear pants and cover your shoulders.

Have an Omani coffee at the Sidab Women’s Association. You’ll get a chance to meet the local women and learn about their work and their lives. They are a sewing association, creating mostly handcrafted bags, as well as a few other items, which you are welcome to purchase.

Next, enjoy a visit to the Omani Heritage Gallery, the first non-profit in the area which was founded to help Omani artisans who create local handicrafts and preserve local heritage. The Gallery focuses on social responsibility and fair trade, and you can learn about the handicrafts made here.

Enjoy lunch at a traditional local restaurant. Head back to your hotel for a little bit of free time this afternoon before embarking on a private sunset cruise on a dhow in the harbor to take in this unique setting.

Head to the Bait Adam Museum this evening for a private visit. See the unique collection of Omani artifacts and become better acquainted with Oman’s heritage by seeing this private collection of old maps, photographs, paintings, jewelry, and ancient coins. After your museum visit, have a traditional dinner with a local family.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Park Inn

Day 3

Muscat
Visit the Nawal Al Hooti Boutique, a local design shop that creates Omani couture clothing. This extremely successful business is run by a local woman. Learn from her about her business and her life in Muscat.

The House of Amouage creates some of the most famous perfumes in the world. Visit the Amouage headquarters, where you will learn about the blending of local ingredients, including frankincense and myrrh which are found in Oman and Yemen, rose from Saudia Arabia, and local amber.

Go to the National Hospitality Institute for a cooking demonstration and class. You’ll get to meet (and be!) the students, try cooking some local dishes, and enjoy lunch at the restaurant in the school.

Visit the National Museum, the Sultanate’s flagship cultural institution, which showcases the nation’s heritage from the earliest human settlement in the Oman Peninsula some two million years ago through to the present day. The museum is dedicated to ensuring that Oman’s cultural heritage is understood and appreciated, and to provide opportunities for cultural expression, innovation, and the transfer of traditional skills and knowledge between generations.

Before dinner tonight, walk through the traditional narrow pathways of Muttrah Souq. See where the locals shop. Maybe you’ll take some time to do some shopping of your own!

Have dinner at a local restaurant with your group.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Park Inn

Day 4

Muscat to Al Hamra
Depart Muscat for the interior of Oman in smaller four wheel drive vehicles. You’ll stop for photos at Nakhal Fort, and then turn towards Wadi Bani Auf. The next stretch of road is steep, twisty, and can be bumpy, but the reward is worth it. You’ll have some time to explore the charming mountain village of Bilad Sayt. The landscape and view are stunning.

The Bait al Safah Museum is an excellent way to explore a traditional Omani house. You’ll see how families traditionally lived.

You’ll arrive at your hotel late this afternoon in time to enjoy the view and settle in before dinner.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: The View Oman

Day 5

Al Hamra
Start early today and head to Nizwa’s renowned cattle market. Only on Fridays, this market is where locals buy and trade the best livestock, including goats, cattle, and even camels! If you buy a camel, it gets delivered to your home; you have to take other livestock home with you after buying it! Immerse yourself in the dealings and trading that takes place at this weekly event.

Explore the local souq, one of the few in Oman featuring exclusively Omani goods, including pottery, hand-carved khanjars (traditional daggers), ornamental silver jewelry, spices, and local delicacies.

Visit the Nizwa Fort and learn about its history and architecture. Its design reflects the Omani architectural ingenuity in the Ya’rubi era that witnessed considerable advancement in military fortifications and the introduction of mortar-based warfare. The main part of the fort is its enormous drum-like tower that rises almost 100 feet above the ground and has a diameter of almost 120 feet.

Next, wander through the small village of Misfat Al Abriyeen, passing the ruins of an old fort along the way. Meander through narrow alleyways between old stone houses, and learn about the ancient irrigation system known as Aflaj.

Enjoy lunch and then head to Jebel Shams, the highest peak in Oman. You’ll drive close to the top where you can take in the spectacular views.

Take the late afternoon to relax at your hotel. Enjoy dinner as a group this evening.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: The View Oman

 

Day 6

Al Hamra to Jabal Akdhar
Head out to explore the village in Jabal Akhdar. You’ll enjoy wonderful views and green surroundings as you walk through two mountain villages on small, old trails. The paths can have stairs, be steep, or run along irrigation channels. Learn about traditional village life.

Have lunch at a local restaurant, and then head to your resort where you can relax, swim in the pool, or enjoy some of the activities offered in this beautiful location.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Alila

Day 7

Jabal Akdhar to the Wahiba Desert
Enjoy one last relaxing morning at your beautiful resort. Take advantage of sunrise yoga on the raised platform in the mountains, book a massage, or channel your inner AdventureWoman and book an exhilarating via ferrata experience!

Spend some time exploring Birkat Al Mouz. Walk through its oasis and date plantations.

Visit a local Bedouin family. Learn about their lives, homes, and traditions. Spend some time with the family so you can learn about how and if their traditions are modernizing.

Head out into the dunes to enjoy the desert sunset this evening.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Desert Nights Camp

 

Day 8

The Wahiba Desert to Ras Al Jinz
If you’re awake, hike into the dunes behind camp to see the sunrise. Make sure to ask your guide the best spot to see it.

Spend some time at Wadi Bani Khalid, a beautiful oasis in the middle of barren mountains. You’ll enjoy a stop here to dip your toes in the beautiful turquoise pools (you can only swim with a very modest swimsuit). Enjoy a picnic lunch today.

Enjoy the afternoon and evening at the turtle reserve. Join your group for dinner at your hotel.

Gather after dinner and set out for Ras Al Junaiyz, a sanctuary for the Green Turtles. When you arrive, you’ll have a thirty minute walk to the beach in the dark over uneven ground. You can use a red headlamp, but not white light. Search the beach for nests, and when you find a turtle, stay and observe it for a while. If you’re lucky, you might see it laying eggs! You can take photos with no flash. This experience will be about two hours long.

As with all wildlife, sightings cannot be guaranteed. Sometimes there are only a few turtles, and sometimes there are many – it varies daily.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve

Day 9

Ras Al Jinz to Muscat
Hike in to Wadi Shab. The hike in is about three miles up and over uneven terrain. Wear your bathing suits this morning, as there isn’t anywhere to change once you’re there – the natural pools are all outdoors and completely wild. It takes some effort to get to Wadi Shab, but you’ll be rewarded with one of the most beautiful swimming spots you can imagine.

On your way to Muscat, stop at the Bimah Sinkhole, a spectacular limestone crater with blue-green water at the bottom.

Have a farewell dinner with your new AdventureWomen friends. Reminisce over all of the memories you have made and celebrate the end of an amazing journey through this truly spectacular country.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Park Inn

Day 10

Muscat and Depart
Say goodbye to your new AdventureWomen friends as you transfer to the airport for your flights home.
Breakfast

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Traveling to Oman



Arrival and Departure Information

March 23rd Departure:

Arrive in Muscat, Oman (MCT) on March 23, 2020 before 3:00pm. One group transfer will be provided, and the time will be advised closer to departure. Private transfers will be available at an additional cost.

Depart Muscat, Oman (MCT) on April 1, 2020. One group transfer will be provided, and the time will be advised closer to departure. Private transfers will be available at an additional cost.

September 21st Departure:

Arrive in Muscat, Oman (MCT) on September 21, 2020 before 3:00pm. One group transfer will be provided, and the time will be advised closer to departure. Private transfers will be available at an additional cost.

Depart Muscat, Oman (MCT) on September 30, 2020. One group transfer will be provided, and the time will be advised closer to departure. Private transfers will be available at an additional cost.

We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. Please contact us at:

(800) 804-8686 or (617) 544-9393
email: info@adventurewomen.com

If you’d like to do anything prior to or following the AdventureWomen trip, we’d be delighted to help you arrange any trip extensions you’re interested in.

Note: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible booking last-minute registrants, we must release hotel rooms two to three months prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.


Passports and Visas

Citizens of the United States must have a passport valid for six months beyond your travel dates with at least two blank facing pages. If you do not have a passport, please apply now!

You must purchase a visa in advance to enter Oman. Do not apply until the end of February (March trip) or the end of August (September trip), as you must enter Oman within 30 days of getting your visa. You can do so online here: https://evisa.rop.gov.om/visa-eligibility

We recommend the 26B Tourist Visa, which is good for 30 days. Technically your trip is only ten days, but if you decide you’d like to come early or stay late, it would be easier if you have a longer visa. The price is roughly US$50 depending on the exchange rate.


Activity Level

We rate this trip as Moderate. Our Moderate adventures exercise your mind more than your body and are designed for women who prefer a leisurely, less rigorous experience. For example, you could walk up to 2 miles per day through cities and villages, stand in museums for a few hours, relax on a boat, or view wildlife from a vehicle. Please note that this is a general description of what you might encounter; for specific details about your trip, please consult the itinerary.

We recommend training before your trip (with your doctor’s permission!) to make the most of your adventure. We have a partnership with FitForTrips, a company that will design an individualized fitness plan for you with this itinerary in mind. Best of all, AdventureWomen guests get a 25% discount with the code FITWOMEN. Learn more at: https://fitfortrips.com/partners/adventure-women/

You should come with a flexible, adventurous, and enthusiastic spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor that adventure travel requires.

Health Considerations

Make an appointment with a travel clinic. There are no immunization requirements for travel to Oman, however your local travel clinic may have recommendations for you based on your age, health, and past vaccination history.

For more health information, go to www.cdc.gov/travel
and navigate to the page about Oman.

Money:

US Dollars and credit cards are accepted in many places in Oman, but we recommend exchanging money for Omani currency. especially if you’d like to shop at souqs or women’s associations. You can use an ATM in Muscat to withdraw cash, or exchange US Dollars.

Suggested Gratuities:
Gratuity suggestions will be advised closer to departure.

How to Register

Call the AdventureWomen office at (800) 804-8686 to determine space availability and register for this trip. We can complete your registration, including taking your credit card deposit over the phone.

If you prefer, you can register online by clicking “Sign Up for this Trip” on the trip page.

Please be sure to read the AdventureWomen policies before registering!

Forms and Final Payment

The deposit for this trip is $800, and is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Once you book, you will need to fill out and return to AdventureWomen:

  • Information Form
  • Booking Conditions Form
  • Copy of Flight Information
  • Copy of Issuing Page of Passport (Photo Page)

Final payment is due to AdventureWomen in a cash form (check, money order, or wire transfer). A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

March 23rd Final Payment Due Date: December 24, 2019

September 21st Final Payment Due Date: June 23rd, 2020

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What's Included

Included

  • All hotel accommodations as noted in the itinerary
  • All meals as listed in the itinerary, including water
  • All ground transportation
  • Fully-guided sightseeing as indicated in the itinerary
  • English-speaking guides throughout the trip
  • Two bottles of drinking water during tours/drives
  • Gratuities for hotel staff, wait staff, and baggage handlers
  • One AdventureWomen Ambassador

Not Included

  • International airfare to and from Oman
  • Optional activities as listed in the itinerary
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Fees for passports, visas, or immunizations
  • Cost of hospitalization or evacuation
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities for head guide(s) and head driver

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Accommodations

Park Inn
The Park Inn is located in downtown Muscat, near shopping areas, ministries, embassies and historic buildings. After a day of exploring, relax and enjoy the rooftop swimming pool or its restaurants and bars.

The View Oman
This eco-resort is tucked away in a scenic valley and requires a four wheel drive vehicle to cover the last stretch of winding mountainous paths leading up to the resort. You’ll be greeted with stunning panoramas of the surrounding valley that are sure to take your breath away. Enjoy comfortable outdoor seating areas, bonfires, and the swimming pool, which arguably has the best views of anywhere in the hotel.

Alila
Alila was built entirely out of local stones gathered from the nearby mountains. It combines traditional Omani construction techniques with contemporary architecture to create to create a uniquely relaxing environment, from the pool to the spacious suites that look out to mesmerising views of the cliff and mountains. The signature features of this hotel include fort-like doors crafted from solid wood, the iconic rose pattern that adorns the lobby, inspired by the damask roses that grow in this region, and a large fireplace in the lobby that warms guests in the chillier months after an invigorating day out in the mountains.

Desert Nights Camp
After a long day of exploring the golden red sands of the Wahiba, relax in the fully air conditioned rooms and pamper yourself in the en suite bathrooms of the Desert Nights Camp. Drift into magical nights and feast on traditional Omani fare in the flickering glow of the campfire.

Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve
This hotel is situated right on the turtle reserve, giving you the easiest access to go watch turtles at night. All rooms have air conditioning and en suite bathrooms.

 

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What to Bring

As you get ready to pack for your adventure, have a look at The AdventureWomen Store at www.theadventurewomenstore.com - we have picked out our favorite travel clothes and outdoor gear to help make packing easy for you. You can also see our recommendations for this trip on the AdventureWomen Pinterest page.

Oman generally has a warm climate. In March, you can expect daytime low temperatures to be 70, and highs to be in the low 90s. The temperature can dip into the high 50s and low 60s overnight. In the mountains, daytime temperatures can be in the 50s and 60s - it gets chilly, so bring layers!

Oman is a Muslim country and it is important that as guests of the country, you respect local customs. Please plan to cover your knees and shoulders when dressing. You can wear a bathing suit at the pool in your hotels, but you should plan on dressing modestly when visiting local sites. When visiting mosques or old town areas, you must wear modest, loose-fitting clothing with long sleeves and long pants. Do not plan to wear leggings on their own in mosques; they work well if you wear them with a dress! Don’t forget to bring a scarf to cover your head!

Clothing and Gear

  • Duffel bag or small suitcase
  • Daypack
  • 2-3 short sleeve shirts (quick dry recommended)
  • 1-2 long sleeve shirts (quick dry recommended)
  • 1 medium weight fleece sweater/jacket for cool evenings
  • 1-2 pairs of pants
  • 1 pair of shorts (must cover knees) or capris
  • 1-2 sets of nicer clothes for dinner (skirts should be knee-length or longer)
  • 1 bathing suit
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Hat for sun protection
  • Underwear
  • Socks
  • Sleepwear
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Sandals
  • Scarf that can double as a head scarf

AdventureWomen Essentials

  • Travel documents (passport, airline tickets, money)
  • 2-3 spare passport photos (in case of lost passport)
  • Write down/print out travel insurance number
  • Locks for your suitcase/duffel bag
  • Travel alarm clock with spare batteries or phone
  • Headlamp or small flashlight with spare batteries
  • Binoculars (optional; 8x40/42 models are excellent choices; center focus models are easiest)
  • Digital camera, memory cards, battery charger
  • Power adapters/power bank
  • Sunglasses, case, and strap
  • Spare glasses, contact lenses, cleaner, saline, etc.
  • Money belt or neck pouch
  • Your AdventureWomen water bottle
  • Sunscreen and lip balm with SPF
  • Hand wipes/hand sanitizer
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste
  • Soap, shampoo, and conditioner
  • Small packet of tissues
  • Tampons and panty liners (avoid plastic applicators)
  • Earplugs: We recommend Mack’s Pillow Soft White Moldable Silicone Snore Proof Earplugs. Available at most drugstores or at www.earplugstore.com
  • Assortment of stuff sacks and Ziploc bags
  • 1-2 bandanas/Buff
  • Reading material/journal and pens

Personal First Aid Kit:

  • Prescription medicine you usually take (in original containers)
  • Personal epi pen (if you need one, don’t forget to pack it!)
  • Bandages, Gauze, Ace bandage, blister prevention
  • Antiseptic wipes/spray
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Cotton-tipped applicators
  • Oral rehydration tablets/packets
  • Antidiarrheal medication
  • Mild laxative
  • Antacid
  • Cold remedies
  • Ibuprofen/acetaminophen
  • Eye drops
  • Tweezers, scissors (travel size), safety pins

If you prefer to buy a complete kit, we recommend the Smart Travel first aid kit.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686