Wanna see a magic?
This is a place in Oman.
This is also in Oman!
Curious what this sui generis place is?
Ladies & Gentlemen, presenting Salalah!
Salalah – The Perfume Capital of Arabia
Salalah is the capital city of Dhofar region, which is a province on the Southern coast of Oman. What makes Salalah a true standout travel destination, not only in the Middle East, but in the entire world as well, is that it changes from an arid, lifeless desert to a terrain covered with a blanket of green and a very cool temperature. Coming to why it is called the perfume capital of Arabia; the Frankincense trees that grow here in abundance fill the air with a pacifying aroma.
Now take a pause and think about it: a place that smells like perfume, looks green as far as your vision goes, enjoys rain showers, has weather like a hill station and all that, most surprisingly, is in the middle of Arabia! Are you packing your bags already? Don’t forget to take your camera.
Best Time to Visit
Salalah is basically a desert in Oman, which receives monsoon winds originating from Indian Ocean, changing the climate of the city like a dream. The monsoon, also called Kharif in the region, arrives at the end of June and leaves by the beginning of September. Keeping this in mind, Oman tourism department makes sure there are lots of activities going on in the city between June and September, which is why the city is flocked by local and international tourists during this period.
Never Short on Fun – Things to do in Salalah
Salalah Tourism Festival
Salalah Tourism Festival kicks off in the second week of July and concludes on the last week of August every year. Not to mention, the festival breathes as long as Kharif season lasts. Ittin Road is the place where you can find this vivacious carnival with cultural shows, parades, fairs, local apparels, regional cuisines and local delicacies.
Land of Frankincense
Tagged with recognition by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, Land of Frankincense is a place for those who dig medieval history. Visitors here are mostly to witness the remains of a caravan and Khor Rori, which is an ancient archaeological site. Another interesting thing about this place is the Frankincense trees growing in abundance here.
Waterfalls emerge in Salalah during the Kharif season when it rains heavily and frequently. And watching the waterfalls, knowing that it is somewhere in Arabia is exhilarating to anyone at the least. Some of the most beautiful waterfalls here are Ayn Khor, Ayn Athum, Ayn Tubrook.
From the main city of Salalah, Ayn Tubrook is at a mere 34 km distance east of Salalah, whereas Ayn Khor is at the same distance in the west. Ayn Athum is also located in the west at 38 km distance from Salalah. The best possible plan to cover waterfalls would be visiting Ayn Athum and Ayn Tubrook on the same day because Ayn Tubrook is on the way to Ayn Athum. Ayn Khor you can keep for the next day.
Al Mughsail Beach
Al Mughsail Beach is the most popular tourist site in the city of Salalah. Apart from being a perfect picnic spot for a day out, the scenic beauty at Al Mughsail is no less than stupefying. Stretching your vision across a coastline that’s being touched by waves of blue water as you sink steps on the comforting white sand is an experience beyond this world. Plus, the mountains guarding the periphery of the coast contribute to the indescribable serenity of this place.
Al Marneef Cave
At a walking distance from Al Mughsail Beach, Al Marneef Cave is popular for blowholes. Blowholes are opening in an underground cave that connect the sea and the land, so that when the sea water rises in the cave, the blowholes create a splash of water. The blowholes at Al Marneef have been covered with mesh for safety, so that you can stand there and enjoy the splashes of sea water. Amazing, isn’t it?
Situated 33 kms east of Salalah, Taqah Castle used to be the home of tribal leader Sheikh Ali bin Taman Al Ma’shani and was built in the 19th century, which doesn’t make it a historical site to be precise. Reopened as a museum in 1994, Taqah Castle, in the present day, reflects the traditional Omani lifestyle and exhibits authentic cookware and weapons from the 19th century.
Visiting hours for Taqah Castle – 9 am to 4 pm on Saturday to Thursday, and 8 am to 11 am on Fridays.
Admission fee for adults – 500 Baizas.