The craggy-topped Hajar mountains of Oman offer some of the most thrilling and distinctive trekking terrain in Asia. As yet, very little infrastructure is in place for multi-stage routes (to cover any serious distance requires wild camping and specially trained guides) but there are plenty of fabulous day walks on offer around the country, ranging from traverses of giant canyons, to Wadi hops and coastal hikes along deserted beaches.
Here are four of our current favourite hikes in Oman:
- The Saiq Plateau, to the northeast of Nizwa, encompasses some of the most dramatic gorges and high mountain ridges in the country. Best of all, a clutch of superbly situated boutique hotels offer luxurious bases from which to follow the trails winding between mountain villages, famous for their fragrant rose terraces and fruit orchards.
- Al Ayn – trek to the site of ancient Bronze Age beehive tombs, rising from the rim of superb canyons in the Western Hajar range.
- Jebel Harim – this lofty massif on the near deserted Musandam Peninsula is riddled with cave dwellings, prehistoric petroglyph sites and amazing viewpoints. Explore the area from the wonderful Six Senses Zighy Bay, one of our absolute favourite hotels in Asia.
- ‘The Balcony Walk’ – Spectacular Wadi Nakhr is often described as ‘Oman’s Grand Canyon’ and the best way to see it is to follow the dizzying section of the W6 trail that crosses it midway up, between the Khateem and the village of As Sab. The so-called ‘Balcony Walk’ requires a head for heights and plenty of drinking water but ranks among the top day treks on the Arabian Peninsula.