This deep trench in the Hajar mountains is often dubbed ‘Oman’s Grand Canyon’, and with good reason. Although not as extensive as its American cousin, the resemblance is striking. Vast cliffs of sedimentary limestone plunge more than a vertical kilometre to the valley floor. Viewed at sunrise or sunset, when the ochres, russets, serpentine greens and reds in the rock are at their most vivid, the spectacle is astonishing.
The approach to the Wadi is via a twisting, un-surfaced road only navigable in its highest sections by 4WD. Eventually you’ll arrive at the remote village of Khateen, renowned for its distinctive black and red rugs, which local children sell enthusiastically to visitors. The settlement also marks the start of the ‘Balcony Walk’, Oman’s most famous trek, which traverses the gorge midway up, winding through a string of abandoned villages and extraordinary viewpoints.