Oman is a country still unknown to most people in Italy and I am so grateful I booked this trip for my Easter break and decided to explore the off beaten track by choosing the south of the country in the Governorate of Dhofar.
The landscape itself is simply amazing, kilometres and kilometres of beautiful beaches with crystal clear waters and white powdery sand, lush coconut groves, banana plantations, the famous Frankincense trees (whose resin is widely used to create charcoal and perfumes).
If you head inland, you will find a progression of hills and plateaus (some views are really stunning) that head towards the desert.
This region is rich in archaeological sites, among which the ruins of Kohr Rori, the ancient City of Samuran from where Frankincense was exported in 1500 BC to Rome, Persia and the Far East overlooking the legendary Port.
One of the reasons the southern part of Oman is famous is because unlike all other countries in the Gulf where temperatures in summer soar to 40/50° plus, here the average temperature remains around 27/30°C due to the famous Khareef also known as Monsoon season.
The whole area of Salalah turns green with a thick rain-bearing fog: springs and waterfalls can be enjoyed by people seeking shelter from the scorching heat.
This season officially starts mid of June and goes on until end of Septmber but dates can vary depending on the global world weather situation. The Khareef season attracts many tourists especially from the Gulf with their families looking for bright green scenery and milder temperatures.
During my stay I booked the Marriot Resort in Mirbat, a delightful Hotel built in 2009 and partly owned by the Minister of Exterior Affairs. The clientele is mostly German and Scandinavian but from December 2015 some curious Italian travellers can discover corner of paradise.
The food you can enjoy in Oman is an incredible variety of flavours, crossing Indian and Middle eastern influences. Lamb, goat and beef can be found pretty much everywhere: they always served with rice and especially in the south, fish and crustaceans are amazingly fresh.
On Omani Night we had the pleasure of trying some of the best dishes accompanied by an excellent musical performance.
What particularly impressed me was the kindness and genuine smile of the Omani people I met and the many foreigners working in this welcoming country.
I shall be definitely come back to Oman to try and explore more of the wonders of this fascinating corner of the world!
This post is also available in: Italian