My favourite Oman photography from Muscat, Sur, Wahiba Sands, Nizwa, and beyond! Here are 59 photos to inspire you to visit Oman.
Sweeping deserts, shimmering souqs, mountain mud villages, grand mosques, Arabian sunsets. Welcome to Oman. A heady mix of excitement and anticipation greeted us as we arrived in Oman, the first time either of us had set foot in the Middle East.
Our 10-day road trip around Oman turned out to be absolutely epic and one of our top travel experiences of all time.
A little more modest than its flashy neighbours in the UAE and Qatar, Oman is one of the few places in the region that has managed to hold onto its heritage. The landscape is breathtaking in the truest sense of the word, and incredibly varied, from coast to mountains to desert.
Driving in Oman was by far the best way to get out and explore. As our road trip progressed, we were constantly blown away by what we saw and experienced. Warm hospitality greeted us at every turn. The natural light and colours and the sheer scale of Oman’s landscape made it a challenge but a joy to photograph.
I had no hope of adequately capturing Oman’s immense beauty on camera, but I hope this photo collection gives you an idea of how this Middle Eastern gem looks and feels. Here is a collection of my top Oman photography.
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Oman photography: Muscat’s Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque
Oman’s biggest and grandest house of worship, the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, is an absolute giant. Muscat, Oman’s capital, revolves around this massive mosque, whose call to prayer can be heard in every corner of the city, setting the pace of life in the souqs and beyond.
However long you are planning to spend at the mosque, triple it. The white marble forecourts are absolutely mesmerising, and you can easily spend hours studying the archway detailing, the intricate carvings and roof paintings. And don’t get me started on the carpet.
Wadis & wide open roads
Oman is made for road trips. The first part of our drive from Muscat along the coast led us to wadis and desert oases, filled with palm trees and aquamarine swimming holes. It’s pretty much mandatory to stop off at every available wadi for a quick dip. The perfect salve on a hot summer’s day.
Oman’s Empty Quarter
The edge of the great Arabian, Oman’s Sharqiya Sands is every bit as vast and glorious as you might imagine one of the world’s biggest deserts would be. The shifting dunes and rippled sands are a photographer’s delight.
Mountains & mud villages
Rising out of the desert, Oman’s rocky Jebel Shams mountains could easily be mistaken for a giant quarry. Clusters of brightly plastered houses and groves of date palms cling to the sides of the mountains.
Ancient villages of crumbling mud structures built on top of stones blend seamlessly into the landscape. Wandering around Misfat Al Abriyeen, Oman’s most famous mud village, was one of the highlights of our Oman experience.
Oman photography: Nizwa Fortress & Souq
Oman’s inland city, Nizwa, is famed for its clay pottery. Vessels of all shapes and sizes are sold at the Nizwa Souq, the city’s biggest marketplace. Rendered in a similar sandy palette, the adjoining Nizwa Fort is one of the most spectacular structures in Oman.
I’ll always remember the shadow patterns the searing sun cast over the geometric fort as we wandered around.
Oman photography: Muttrah Souq
The biggest bazaar in the biggest city, Muttrah Souq has a long history as Oman’s main marketplace. Traders sell saccharine dates, henna powder, glittering jewels, and a treasure trove of antiques and beautiful objects.
When the sun goes down, the souq comes alive.
Sur & Oman’s epic coastline
Dhow boats in various stages of construction and decay line the shoreline in Sur. This pretty coastal village of white and cream houses is the perfect place to base your stay on Oman’s coast.
From Sur, you can drive all the way out to the tip of the Arabian Peninsular to see the turtles at Ras Al Jinz.
Where to stay in Oman
- Muscat: Levatio Hotel – Plush suites and an outdoor pool close to Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque.
- Sur: Sur Hotel – retro rooms with friendly staff and walking distance to restaurants.
- Ras Al Jinz: Sama Ras Al Jinz – glamping-style cabins close to the beach.
- Wahiba Sands: Desert Nights Camp – luxury tents and the most incredible buffet dinner in Oman nestled in the dunes.
- Misfat Al Abriyeen: Misfat Old House – a family owned guesthouse inside one of the village’s heritage mud homes.
- Nizwa: Nizwa Heritage Inn – a splendid little boutique hotel with mud architecture, terrace cloisters, and Omani rugs sprawled over every floor.
Have you been to Oman? Where was your favourite place to photograph in the country?