Muscat Holidays

Dine on fire pit-lined beaches overlooking the Arabian Sea, hunt for sandalwood and myrrh and cruise over dolphin-filled waters in Muscat.

Muscat – where you can wander the chaotic dusky and dark bakhoor and frankincense-filled souks, walk the glossy Carrera marble floors of the Grand Mosque and watch the last rays of sun dip into the Gulf of Oman from glorious stretches of sand. Muscat is an intriguing city that puts you waterfront on the beach but also right in the heart of a riveting culture that has a surprisingly modern twist. 

Holidays to Muscat are vibrant in culture and heritage, but they’re also clean, crisp and modern. You’ll find luxury car dealerships and bright white malls alongside marble crescent-topped, white-washed mosques sounding the call of prayer from minarets just a ride away from somersaulting spinner dolphins. Early mornings on the Muttrah Corniche feel like you’ve just stepped into an old fishing village as dhows drop off catch-of-the-day and pomegranate-peppered mountains offer silent moments and extraordinary views. In the late afternoon, locals come out to haggle at souks, dine beachfront on seafood platters and take late evening dips in the sea as the city comes alive with classic Arabian charm.

Call one of our Personal Experts and we’ll start crafting your next Muscat holiday.

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Muscat Hotels

Our recommendations for the best places to stay in Muscat

Kempinski Hotel Muscat

A shiny newcomer shaking up the Muscat hotel scene with its striking design.

Al Bandar at Shangri-La's Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa

The most central of the Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa’s hotels and home to CHI, The Spa.

Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel

One of Muscat’s most distinguished hotels with a reputation for exceptional personalised service.

Al Waha at Shangri-La's Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa

Featuring a treasure trove of facilities, this hotel has a fun and informal atmosphere — perfect...

Shangri-La Al Husn Resort & Spa

Beautifully designed with elegance and style, Al Husn is one of the finest hotels on the Arabian...

The Chedi Muscat

A chic and contemporary oceanside retreat set on the edge of Oman’s capital.

Desert Nights Resort

Located in the heart of the Omani desert, Desert Nights Camp is a boutique experience that offers...

Get to know Muscat and those important practicalities when planning your perfect holiday.


GMT +4 hours


Omani Rial


7¾ hours





Where is Muscat? Muscat, capital of the Sultanate of Oman, is situated in the north of the mainland on the coast of the Gulf of Oman. From Muscat, it’s a 4¼ hours’ drive north-west to Dubai, or an hour’s flight. 

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Muscat Mosques Muscat’s mosques provide some of the most ornate buildings in the capital and give a beautiful insight into Islamic architecture and religion. Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is impressive and home to Swarovski chandeliers and one of the largest Persian carpets in the world. Located on the Corniche of Muttrah you will find the Mosque of the Great Prophet with its impressive blue dome and scripture-inlayed minarets. Non-Muslims should always check before entering any mosque.

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Cultural highlights Gain a greater insight into Oman’s cultural heritage with a visit to The National Museum where you will find archaeological findings, samples from ancient craft industries and models of some of the trading boats that stopped here on their Spice Route journeys. The historic weaponry on display at the Bait Al Zubair Museum is also worth a visit and, although closed to the public, you can still get a close-up peek of the Al Jalali and Al Mirani Forts that protect the walled city. One of Muscat’s newer treasures is the Royal Opera House, where illustrious stars like Plácido Domingo have performed and concerts usually sell out months in advance.

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City souks Like many countries in Arabia, the souks is where you can gain a real insight into local life. The Muttrah Souk is Oman’s most famous – a labyrinth of tiny stalls and shops on the Corniche where you can haggle for spices and perfumes, gold and silver, handicrafts and textiles. If you are visiting the Sultan Qaboos Mosque, then it’s worth exploring Sohar Souk where many cottage industries sell their handicrafts.

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Getting around If your holiday involves making the most of your luxury hotel and solely exploring the city, taxis are the most convenient way to get around. If you fancy venturing further afield to mountain villages and desert, a hire car is recommended. Taxis are orange and white and unmetered, so we advise securing the fare before getting in. 4x4s are needed for the Omani terrain, roads are well signposted in both English and Arabic with brown signs pointing to the major attractions.

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Food and drink You’ll find an enticing blend of Arabic, European and Indian cuisine, and plenty of fresh seafood. Luxury hotels deliver fine dining experiences with everything from pan-Asian to international and beach dining to spice market-style eateries. Dates are renowned here and for a traditional Omani meal order the shuwa, a traditional dish of lamb or goat marinated and wrapped in palm leaves and then slowly cooked in a pit. 

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