I have been a “Muscat”eer for most of my life , yet my knowledge of the place is as if I lived under a rock of the Hajar Mountains.
Nevertheless, my local knowledge is at your disposal, if you’d like to email me with any queries. Unless my life is so happening that I forget to check updates, which is highly unlikely, I will be reachable by email : firstname.lastname@example.org and Twitter : @bladenomics .
A few FAQs of life in Oman in the 90s:
- How did growing up in Oman feel like? It felt like locking your self up in a very, very clean room. It also meant noisy Toshiba or O General window A/Cs which were the first lullabies we were used to sleeping with.
For senior school kids, this A/C was very useful in making enough noise to cover up the #bleddy dail up internet tone that would inform your folks you’re connecting to the internet. When split A/c’s came around with the USP – “silent” cooling, it was just #dafaq moment. What, why would anyone want “silent” cooling man! No lullaby, no cover up noise. Thankfully broadband came around pretty soon.
- What are your best childhood memories in Oman?– My best memories begin and end with Chips Oman and Pofak Oman and don’t get away with Emrati Pofaki which is not the same thing.
Also Chips Oman with hot sauce and cheese in a samoon bread can make us cry out of nostalgia. This Chips “Oman” Sandwich is claimed to be national street food in UAE.
Quoting The National UAE, “New York has cheesecake; Philadelphia has cheesesteaks. Chicago has deep-dish pizza, and the UAE – it has the Chips Oman sandwich.”
This outrageous claim happened by no other merit other than journalists at the National got ahead with publishing this before the Times of Oman journalists could . You can judge the National’s article keeping in mind they also claim Nutella sandwich a Gulf tradition..
- Where did the cool kids hang out in Muscat? You’ll have to ask them for that, since me, my cousins and friends were at picnics at the Rose Garden, Naseem Garden, Riyam Park, Kalbooh Park. There used to be Sindbad Park al Khuwair, WadiKabir Park and a Seeb Park as well.
- Where did you go shopping in Muscat as a kid?
We didn’t.There was an era of supermarket shopping at Sultan Shopping, “Pic n Save”, Al Jadeed and Alfair and collecting “coupons” for raffle draws. And then, a hypermarket era and we are still awaiting the online shopping era to hit Oman.
- Kids Collectibles in Muscat? We collected everything from NIDO milk powder tin foils, Zain Juice stickers, Sun top stickers, Omantel telephone cards (hardly find those booths anymore), Playcards and Tazos from chips packets.
- Did you have to wear scarf/ burka/ hijab? – Unless entering a Mosque, No.
- Where is Oman ? Is it in North India? – This was a serious question asked to me on my first day of college in India.
- What is your biggest achievement in Oman? Getting a Driving License. Seriously, no kidding, because some people are blogging exclusively on this subject.
- Wow, Oman must be having the best drivers and driving culture? Since it is a rare sight to look out of your window and find people walking on the streets whom you can whistle or wink at, so we get all excited when we are driving , so we keep flashing (the headlights,man), honking, and tail gating. Eve teasing laws for vehicles are very poor in Oman. But traffic laws are very strict.
- Cool, will that help me get attention? – Of ROPs? Yes. Check this guy out
Okay, clearly your life sucks. What can I do in Oman?
Here’s my consolidated list of places to see in Oman. A couple of them are not particularly famous but my personal choices. Still working on this list. Other “Muscat”eers, leave your suggestions in the comment box below!
Oman – 100 Places to Visit (Will update soon)
Muscat (Should take a day /2 if you skip the malls/activities)
- Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque (Recommended)
- Royal Opera House
- Museums – National Museum, Museum of Omani Heritage, Bait Al Zubair Museum, Armed Forces Museum, Omani French Museum, Muscat Gate Museum , Omani Aquarium and Marine Science, Bait Al Baranda. (Recommended- if new to Oman)
- Sidab area- drive
- Azaiba Beach
- Shatti Al Qurm Beach (Love street)
- Muscat Grand Mall
- Muscat City Center
- Qurum City Center
- Bowling– Al Masa Mall (al Sarooj), Oman Bowling Club (Al Khuwair), Fun Zone (Qurm)
- Fort Al Mirani and Fort Al Jalali
- Al Alam Palace
- Muttrah Souq and Corniche (Recommended)
- Qantab Beach
- Adventure Sports at beaches.
- Dolphin-Whale watch boat tour at Marina Bandar /Oman dive Center (Recommended)
- Barka Fort
- Al Sawadi beach, islands
- Nakhal Hot springs (Recommended)
- Nakhal fort
- Ayn A thawara
- Rustaq Fort
- Snake Canyons (Recommended)
- Sohar – fort, beach, museum
- Wadi Bani Kharus
- Ayn al kesfa
- Wadi Bani Auf
- Camel Racing
- Wadi Abyad
- Khajar manufacturing
- al Hila Fort
- Al khandaq castle
Dhofar Region (Best time- Khareef season)
- Salalah during Khareef festivacl
- Archealogical sites Nubian Complex
- Lost city of ubhar/ Atlantis of the Sands
- wadi dharabat
- Anti gravity Point.
- Nabi Ayoub’s tomb
- al baleed Forts
- Salalah Port
- Plantations- Banana coconut and papaya
- Khor Rouri, Another place rumored to be the meeting spot every Thursday of all the top witches of the world. Rumored that the rocks/caves are shaped like table chairs
- Bahla Do not know any place to “see” except preIslamic Forts. Nearby Jabrin Castle is beautiful. This place is rumored about witchcraft and black magic and many local stories/fables of what happened to people/kids here etc. A lot of this Dhakhiliya region stories have such legends and a lot of history.
- Nizwa (Capital of the region) (Recommended) Fort– and Souq (market)
- Jabel Shams (Highest Point) Recommended
- Jabel Akhdar (Green Mountain) Recommended
- Wadi Bani Khalid
- Wadi Shaab (Muscat- Quriyat- Wadi Shaab/Sink Hole- should take a day , spend night at Ras al Hadd)
- Ras Al Hadd (Turtle beach)
- Bimmah Sink Hole
- Wadi Aribiyan
- Quriyat Corniche
- Majlis Al Jinn – means genies/spirits sitting room- is the second largest cave chamber in the world.
- Ras Al Jinn – eastern most point of arab world, also another Turtle breeding beach.
- Wadi Daiqah
- Dhow Building Yards
Consider me your personal tour guide to food, fag and drink. Well, maybe not drinks, and probably not fag. But plenty of food but without meat.”
― Doug Cooper, Inside Out
In Oman, vegetarians are disqualified from being food critics, so lets leave it to the experts online. Also check useful links section below.
“Don’t tell me you come to Oman to buy “forin” gifts.
Go to Dubai nearby for buying scent bottles, China electronics and minor gold chain. “– Brother Mark.
- Omani Halwa (Varieties by :- Nakhal, Nizwa, Maqbali -(my personal favorite), Barka. Flavours :- date, plain-rosewater, dry fruits, honey)
- Dried fruits (dates, nuts, etc)
- Irani Saffron
- Lebanese/Turkish sweets
- Souvenirs – Sand Art, Silver Jewelry, Artifacts and Omani Khanjar
- Yemeni / Sohar Honey
- Oman Coast post on Muttrah Souq Souvenirs
Oman – Important Links (will update soon)
Do leave a message/ email me of other links to you think can be included.
Blogs About Oman
- Andy in Oman
- Dhofari Gucci
- Kishor Cariappa
- Oman Travels into Oman
- Nomad in Nizwa
- Muscat Jet Driver
- Duncan adventures
- Omani Cuisine (food and restaurant reviews)
- Shy Rebellious Arab Girl
- How to live like an Omani Princess
- Susan Al Shahri
- Digital Oman
- Angry in Oman
- Sultanate Social
- MoOn Smile-English
- One foot in the sand
- Products from Muscat
- HeyFatsu (Food and restaurant reviews)
- Blue Chi
- Muscat Mutterings
- I’ll go wherever you’ll go
- Omanexpat — Cost of Living
- OmanCoast- Check out posts on – How to send / receive mail in Oman , a few Omani Arabic Phrases , Art in Oman
- Oman Collective Intelligence
Oman-Based Bloggers/ Experiences In Oman
Can I link myself?
- Transition of Thoughts
- The Shifting Sands
- My Travel Pics around Oman
- Omani Halwa- UAE blogger-Dreaming in Arabic
- CookbookJaleela – Expat from Chennai’s Omani /Arab recipes.
Tour and Transport-
- MWCIF – Muscat Where can i Find
- G.A.L.S (Women only – Adventure Group)
- Oman Mountain Club
- Muscat Baking Club
- Muscat CouchSurfers
- Muscat Beauty and Spa
- Climbing in Oman
- Adventure Oman
- Muscat Road Runners
- Labradors Retrievers Oman
- Muscat Art Club
- CarPooling Oman
- Adopt A Pet Oman
- Muscat Uniforms and Books.
Home Delivery Food
- British Business Forum Oman
- OmanCoast’s list of Expat Clubs and Societies .