Waterfalls, green fields and verdant valleys: not what you’d normally associate with the Arabian Peninsula, but they’re all here in Oman’s monsoonal southern province Dhofar.
The coastal capital Salalah enjoys excellent beaches, cooling breezes and a lively souk, where you can pick up frankincense, for centuries the source of the region’s wealth. The Frankincense Trail, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, begins in Dhofar and once stretched all the way to Jordan.
Using Salalah as a base you can head off to the lush slopes of Wadi Darbat, numerous old forts, impressive caves, the evocative mud-brick ruins of Mirbat and the traditional resting place of Job. Or go beyond the greenery to the arid “Empty Quarter” shared with Saudi Arabia.
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The region of Dhofar (also known as Zufar) is in the southeast of Oman, bordering Yemen and Saudi Arabia. From Muscat you can fly to Salalah, the region’s capital, or catch a bus which will take about 12 taxing hours.