Muscat, the capital of Oman, a beautiful country on the Arabian Sea, is the city that I am going to take you to in this article of mine. The best time to visit it is from November till March when temperatures range between 17 degrees Celsius at night to 29 degrees in the daytime. Muscat is a beautiful city with pristine beaches, the colour of the sea is an amazing shade of blue-green, with crystal clear waters.
My first visit to Muscat was in 2016 and I stayed at the Muscat Crowne Plaza Hotel, which is an idyllic place. It’s built on top of a cliff with a panoramic view of the Arabian Sea. A path leads from its opulent poolside Bar, down the cliff to a dreamy private beach. Its four restaurants serve an amazing range of cuisine spoiling you for choice – The Edge, if you are interested in basking in the sun (definitely not during peak summer!); Come Prima, if you would like to satiate your Italian taste buds and enjoy a family lunch; Shiraz, for the Persian cuisine lovers; and Tropicana, for the seafood hungry ones. The perfect place to unwind and forget your cares. The laid-back could spend their holiday here, but for the more energetic there is lots to do and see in Muscat!
Among the must-visits are the Grand Mosque, Sultan’s Palace, Bait Al Zubair, Ghalya museum of Modern Art, the Mutrah Souq, Mutrah Corniche, National Museum and Marina Bandar Al Rowdha. The Hop on Hop off Big Bus tour is a good way to see lots of Muscat in just one day. There are eight stops in its loop and you can remain onboard or get off at any stop, explore the place and hop on the bus again. Highlights of the tour are Al Jalali Fort, Al Alam Palace, Royal Opera House, Churches and Temples, Riyam Monument, Mutrah Souq.
I recommend a visit to the Shangri La Barr Al Jissah resort outside Muscat. It’s a three hotel beach resort with its own Marina and fleet of boats (Al Waha, Al Bandar, and Al Husn). Each hotel has its own private beach and extraordinary facilities for water sports. Restaurants, bars, lounges are sprinkled over the three hotels that comprise the resort. You will enjoy the mountainous terrain of Muscat as you drive to the resort. It is a slightly longer drive from the main city but totally worth it. There is a stream which joins the swimming pool and the beauty of that stream is that they have made it so that it runs through all three hotels!
People enjoy going for a swim on the beach and then lay down under the shade of trees enjoying the view. There is a wide range of restaurants to choose from, whether you want to munch on a burger, eat a scrumptious pizza, enjoy a spread of kebabs or want a buffet, you name it you got it! My favourite is the Tanoor as their food is absolutely delectable. Also, the bar between the pools has music playing and you can see people enjoying their drinks and tapping their fingers to the beat. There is also a beach there where Giant Sea Turtles come to lay their eggs and in the souvenir shop-cum-café, the top floor has pictures and information regarding the different kind of turtles!!!
That’s all for now folks! Click here to read the next chapter of the Muscat Diaries.