A Trip to Salalah…

I love history and understanding why things are the way they are. For that, an investigation of Muscat and Salalah is perfect. With the shift of the capital to Muscat from Salalah in 1970, the two cities present different tones of the country. In Muscat, you see how far Oman has come in the past 47 years. In Salalah, you see the foundations of the nation and a subtle but definitive mark in the Omani economy not only in tourism but also in agriculture and industry.

Salalah is one of those places that  goes on nearly everyone’s “list” to travel to when you are in the Middle East and for good reason as it is the birthplace of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos and breathtakingly green during the rainy season.

My favorites from Salalah are below –

Taqah Castle – This is such an excellent and interesting walk through of the history – full of rooms displaying cooking techniques, bedroom set ups, meeting room set ups, items of early trade, and early pictures of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos. What’s more, this castle used to be the private residence of rulers of Oman.

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Taqah Castle

The Anti-Gravity Point – Just watch…the car literally rolls uphill!

The Coastline – From an American perspective, it’s virtually untouched. I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

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Salalah coastline.

Camels by the Wadi – Not only was it so lively even outside the rainy season but also it hosted farmers’ camels from the surrounding area – without accompaniment! The animals simply knew where to return home at night.

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Camels by the wadi (although a bit dry at the moment)

Roadside Coconut – The BEST. You can buy the coconut meat in the groceries here, but there’s nothing like one right off the road in Salalah.

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My husband & I enjoying a roadside coconut.

Frankincense – A UNESCO World Heritage site. Salalah is known as “the land of frankincense.” Can you just imagine this being collected and traded hundreds of years ago? The smell of frankincense will always take me back here.

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The side of the frankincense tree is punctured to bring out the famous base for oud scents.

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As there are no frankincense “farms” per se, a special permit is required to harvest the frankincense throughout the tree in the area.

Not pictured would be the Museum of the Frankincense Land as no photos are allowed inside. However, this stop is one of the best. As museums go, you can certainly tell that this one has been laid out with great care and detail. As an American, one of the main takeaways I had was that the first diplomat from Oman came to the United States in 1840. Stunning to find that our relations date back so far. And the skill it must have take to make the journey!?

As you may be able to tell, I did not visit Salalah during the rainy season; however, it is one location that I do not mind putting back on my list…

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Above is information on the tour guide that we used. He did a great job taking us around to the unique spots in Salalah.



Categories: Oman, Travel

Tags: , , , ,

3 replies

  1. Love this post! Now I want to go to Salalah even more than I did before. A friend did say the best time to visit is in June or July because it’s not too hot then and it is raining…

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    • Thank you! We found some really great deals in the off season – our trip was in February. To me, it has enough history and sites to keep you busy if not in the rainy season, but you definitely get the best view of Salalah when it is right in the middle of the rainy season though!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi. Great post. Salalah is definitely back on my to-go-to list as I didn’t really see much of it when I went down there. It took about 12 hours to drive from Muscat, not one of the more exciting drives in Oman until we got to the mountains just north of Salalah. It was rainy season and very green and very foggy – could have sworn I was back in Scotland. After nearly ending up in Yemen, we were down in Dalkut, small fishing village a couple of kilometres from the border, for 4 days. Rained for 2 days without stopping but the whole region was very different to Muscat (used to live there as well).

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