Tourists and travellers from all over the world, as well as the Gulf, visit the country of Oman for a quick getaway or an Oman beach holiday. It is still a place where you can find unexplored pristine beaches where human civilisation has not yet made an intrusive appearance to spoil the natural beauty.
There are several small islands along the coastline where you can escape from the humdrum of city life and go on adventures for excitement. The coastline is 1700 km long, and most of the beaches are open for the public.
Beaches and Beach Resorts in Oman
Golden sands, glowing crystal waters, clear blue skies, colourful birds and breezy weather: Oman is a perfect place to relax and enjoy an unforgettable beach vacation. Because everyone loves to be surrounded by natural beauty, we have gathered this list of the most beautiful beaches that Oman has to offer. With a thriving tourist industry, there are also a number of Oman beach resorts situated at most of the locations.
The beaches here are as varied as the country itself, which is why we believe that there is the right beach for you. Various natural conditions make every beach in Oman a very special place.
Here are some of the beaches and beach resorts in Oman where you can play, swim, and sunbathe as much as you want:
Aviation Beach or Shell Beach:
This is near the Civil Aviation club in Al Alzaiba, Muscat. Al Sawadi beach with its islands (and resort) is one of the main touristic destinations between Muscat and Sohar on the North Shore of Oman. The several kilometres long beach is covered with colourful shells and the area is a great spot for snorkelling, diving and kiteboarding.
Where to stay:
Al Mughsayl Beach
Al Mughsayl Beach is located in Dhofar, the southern region of Oman. It is probably the most famous tourist attraction in Dhofar, Oman and the beach is liked by the locals and tourists alike. Its golden beach is about 7 km (4.35 miles) long. Beside its crystal waters and glowing sand, the coconut and banana plantations along the coastline make this a picturesque paradise.
Where to stay:
This is one of the longest beaches in Oman. Qurum Beach is a stretch of sand around four kilometres long in the capital Muscat.
Thanks to its good location and transport links it is particularly popular and offers welcome refreshment after a long sightseeing or shopping trip. There are toilets and showers on the beach so you can put your normal clothes back on straight after bathing and there’s nothing to stop you heading straight back into the city.
It’s well worth visiting this beautiful, long beach and taking a walk along it.
Where to stay:
Located at a short drive away from Muscat, it is one of the most secluded beaches. It is one of those secluded beaches where families can explore the rocky shore when the tide is low.
It is also one of the best places to catch a “fisherman’s taxi” for a couple of rials and take an exhilarating ride out to sea where you can be left to your own amusement at a secluded beach or taken around the interesting rock formations close by.
If you have kids this there is a snack shop and playground that will, no doubt keep them entertained.
Where to stay:
This beach offers tourists a view of the colourful marine life in Oman. Marjan beach tends to quite quiet during daylight hours, however, this beach is perfect for the novice snorkeler and those who want to see some colourful marine life without venturing too far out to sea.
The coast offers dazzling coral reefs, sea cucumbers, Nemos (clownfish) among others. This beach is also great for tourists to see the fisherman at their best spearing cuttlefish for the freshest seafood one can eat. Marjan is also a great beach for taking it all in and unwinding.
Where to stay:
Ras al Hadd Beach
This is a turtle reserve beach located about 60 km from the city of Sur.Ras al Hadd beach is a never-ending yellow sandy beach. It is divided into two areas – the freely accessible north section, where you are likely to come across a few fishermen, and the closed east section, where entry is prohibited in order to protect the turtles.
On Ras al Hadd Beach you can go for endless walks, collect all kinds of seashells or cool off in the super-clear Gulf of Oman. Tourist facilities are limited. If you have everything you need in your car, you can make use of one of the stone huts and spend a really great day here on an empty beach.
Where to stay:
Al Saswadi Beach
Al Sawadi beach with its islands (and resort) is one of the main touristic destinations between Muscat and Sohar on the North Shore of Oman. The several kilometres long beach is covered with colourful shells and the area is a great spot for snorkelling, diving and kiteboarding.
Some of the world’s best corals are found at this beach located two and a half an hours drive from Muscat.
Al Sawadi beach is a special place on the North Shore of Oman. The long beach is surrounded by a group of islands, which create a rocky environment great for snorkelling and diving. The main island has a fort and can be reached on foot during low tide.
Al Sawadi is also a good departure point for the Daymaniyat islands, considered one of the best diving spots in Oman.
Where to Stay?
- Al Sawadi Beach resort and spa
Al Bustan Beach
Named after the Al Bustan Palace hotel, this beach overlooks the mountains around Muscat. Rest and locals are the key words for this small sandy beach. Conviviality and views, rather than bustling activity.
The view of the impressive Ritz-Carlton Hotel and an almost 360-degree mountain panorama are perfect for city escapees. Especially suitable for couples who want to lose themselves in the fishing village atmosphere and are seeking relief from large beaches.
But the beach is not completely accessible. A large section belongs to the Ritz-Carlton Hotel and is only accessible to hotel guests.
Where to stay:
Dhofar has some of the most beautiful beaches that are often flecked with the bright pink of the flamingoes that like to flock there. Lagoons and caves make up a large part of the landscape here.
Furthermore these beaches are great for water-sports enthusiasts who enjoy a bit of water skiing and diving. The beaches are made easily accessible to the public by well paved roads and other transportation services.
If you like flamingos, lagoons, and caves, this is the beach for you.
Where to stay
Oman as a country is very friendly to tourists, and the local people are some of the nicest you can find. However, being an Islamic country, it has a culture that is rather conservative. You will be fine if you follow the rules and stay within certain boundaries and social restrictions.
Here are some tips that you can use to stay safe when visiting beaches in Oman:
Since Oman is an Islamic country, the dress code to be followed is to stay covered up while you are in Oman. The general rule of getting dressed applies to both men and women. Generally, you must keep your legs up to knees and arms up to elbows covered. Even if you are going to the beach, do not wear shorts or a tiny top while you are on the way.
It is acceptable to wear a swimming costume while in the water, but you are expected to wrap a sarong or something similar around your body when you get out of the ocean. Bikinis are frowned upon in public beaches, and if worn, they should not expose too much skin. Tiny tops or thongs are best to be avoided.
Men should wear shorts rather than the smaller trunks. If you are staying in one of the beach resorts that have a private beach, then it is okay to wear whatever you like. If you are unsure of how to dress, just take a look around and see how the other people on the beach have dressed.
Look at the Category of Beaches
Take note of the signs on the beaches. Some of the beaches are open only for families. So, if you are travelling on your own, you should not be going to these beaches. So, you must make sure that you are on the right beach to avoid any problems.
Follow Laws in Oman
Oman is a total monarchy, which means that the Sultan has the final word. Sharia law has shaped Oman’s legal system. Like any other Islamic country, respect the traditions of the local people. This is especially true if you are visiting Oman during the time of Ramadan or any other religious festival.
Don’t Consume Drugs
There is zero tolerance for drugs in Oman irrespective of whether you are possessing drugs or trafficking them. There are severe punishments for those who consume or sell drugs in the country. Even if you possess a small amount for personal use, it can land you in jail for up to a year. So, make sure you do not carry any illegal substance on the Oman beaches or anywhere else in the country.
Photography with Caution
Exercise caution while taking photos of military or government buildings on or near the Oman beaches. While taking selfies or photographs of your group, try to avoid taking other people on the beach. Since they are conservative people, you may end up having a bad fight with them for taking their photographs.
Flying any kind of recreational drone will attract a penalty of as much as three years in jail in Oman. The authorities have imposed this law due to several problems arising from recreational drones flying too near the airport buildings and flight paths of aeroplanes.
Pay Respect to the Royal Family
It is considered offensive or insulting to make any kind of negative remarks about the royal family of Oman, as well as the government and its officials.
Not LGBT Friendly
In Oman, homosexuality is not legal, and it is a punishable offence with a jail term of up to three years. So, if you are traveling as a homosexual couple, use caution and avoid public displays of affection. As long as you do not break any rules or bring any attention to yourselves there will be no trouble.
Don’t Display Bad Behaviour
Any kind of bad language, gestures or behaviour in public places like beaches are not allowed — even a rude gesture while driving or otherwise may get you into trouble. Also, remember not to make any public displays of affection, which are not allowed as well.
No Alcohol in Public
The age to drink alcohol legally in Oman is 21 years. It is also an offence to drink alcohol in public or be drunk in public. So, enjoy your time on an Oman beach, but don’t drink alcohol there.
Travelling to Oman for a beach holiday is a little trickier than doing so in a Western country, but it can also be more rewarding. You will get to experience a country that has hardly any tourists, meet the wonderfully friendly local people, and get a chance to explore and see some stunning scenery.
As far as having fun on an Oman beach is concerned, you can be safe and sound if you follow the rules and etiquettes of the country.
Oman is a hidden gem of a destination, especially for beach getaways. With beautiful beaches and friendly staff at all establishments. With rules on Omani tourist visas changing recently, this means that you now can’t get a visa on arrival.