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History & Heritage


Musandam: The Gulf’s Own Norwegian Fjords

Located in the northern tip of the Emirates, the Musandam Peninsula is surrounded by the Arabian Gulf to the West, the Strait of Hormuz to the North, and the Gulf of Oman to the East. Thanks to its geographic location, the area is full of contrasts, boasting stretches of white sand, crystal-clear waters as well as arid mountains. The spectacular region is also called Oman’s Norway, which somehow resembles the Scandinavian country.

These Omani territories are still unknown; their wilderness spans over 20 km. Its huge cliffs and mountains—over 2,000 meters high—are lush with turquoise lagoons, and some more intimate coves. Besides swimming, it is also an ideal spot for snorkeling. In the North of the Peninsula as well as in the South, there is no shortage of dolphins, sea turtles, rays and colored fish: a true delight for divers! For lovers of all things idle, these Arabian Fjords offer several beaches on which they can pleasantly lounge.

Authentic fishing towns

Even though the seaboard isn’t densely populated, some tiny fishing villages remain. Nestled at the foot of the cliffs, some of them are only accessible by boat. The houses are almost unreachable, impenetrable, adding to the peaceful landscape’s charm. Only the sound of small boats echoes from time to time, when villagers go for fishing or sail to Khasab, the Peninsula’s main town. These trips enable them to get their supply of goats, as well as foodstuff coming from the neighboring Emirates.

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A trip led by the waves

A cruise offers the best way to visit these small towns, and fully enjoy the fjords. Most of the time, it’ll be a dhow, a traditional wooden skiff with white sails that’ll take you around. The most popular excursion is the one which boards in Khasab, and then cruises along the Fjord of Khor Ash Sham. A noteworthy mention are options such as renting a kayak, or hiking, yet another way to appreciate the sunkissed Fjords.

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Published on 14 August 2018