Al Bustan Palace Ritz Carlton

Oman’s beaches are famed for warm, white sand and crystal clear waters. (Photo: Getty Images)

Beach Travel

7 Reasons Why Oman Is a Beach-Lover’s Paradise

Oman is famous for its golden desert dunes, cloud-grazing mountains and exotic ancient cities. But its beaches will take your breath away, too.

From white sandy stretches with luxurious loungers to wild-turtle-nesting havens and dolphin-dotted bays, there is a beach here to suit every type of traveler, plus irresistibly clear waters to swim, snorkel and kayak in. These are the best places to unroll your towel.

As always, check for travel guidelines and closures before planning your trip.

See Dolphins, Whale Sharks and More

Qantab Beach Oman
The waters near Qantab Beach are a joy to explore. (Photo: Getty Images)

Away from the bustle of Muscat, Qantab Beach is a secluded hideaway backed by rugged cliffs — you’d never guess that the capital’s sights are just a 20-minute drive up the coast. But it’s the ocean that holds the most wonder: This area is renowned for its dolphins, whale sharks and sea turtles, with boat tours and snorkeling trips departing from the beach and nearby.

Back on dry land, sink your toes into the sand and enjoy the tranquility of this little-visited bay. It’s wild, untamed, and all the more beautiful for it. Keep an eye out for coral fragments and cone-shaped shells on the shoreline.

Watch Turtles Nesting by Moonlight

Al Sifah Beach Oman
Witness the phenomenon of turtle nesting in Oman. (Photo: Getty Images)

Loggerhead turtles can swim thousands of miles in a year, but when it comes to nesting, they always return to the very same beach where they were born to lay their eggs by moonlight. This incredible phenomenon occurs all along Oman’s coastline, but Al Sifah Beach (a 40-minute drive south from Muscat) is one of the most spectacular places to see it.

Maybe it’s the dazzling white dunes, the almost impossibly clear water or the mountains that rise from the sands? Whatever the reason, Al Sifah is the kind of beach that stirs the soul — especially when you’re sitting quietly before dawn, watching a lone turtle trundle out from the waves and witnessing this ancient circle of life.

Find a Fresh Adventure

Bandar Khayran Oman
Channel adventure in Bandar Khayran. (Photo: Getty Images)

Embrace your inner explorer on a trip to Bandar Khayran, a wild hot spot for hiking, kayaking, Jet-Skiing and swimming just a 40-minute drive from the capital. Out here, the ocean encroaches on Oman’s coastline, creating tiny islands and secluded bays — a playground for nature lovers and wildlife alike.

Lace up your hiking boots for a beach-to-mountain adventure on one of the many trails that weave through the landscape. With clear waters and calm conditions, this is a glorious location for swimming and snorkeling, and you can even camp right on the beach. Wild times are guaranteed.

Enjoy Muscat’s Social Scene

W Muscat Wow Suite
Watch the waves from your room at W Muscat. (Photo: Marriott International)

Al Qurum Beach is the city’s favorite sunbathing spot, in an area renowned for its luxurious villas, trendy cafés and designer boutiques — a combo that keeps it buzzing every day of the week. The vibe is relaxed and family friendly, with impromptu beach soccer and volleyball games beneath towering palm trees and a free outdoor gym with a refreshing sea breeze.

As well as beachside picnic areas, there’s a wealth of great lunch options in the area, such as Harvest, with its healthy, local and seasonal dishes, and WET Deck, a sleek poolside bar that serves a South American–inspired menu. You’ll find them both at W Muscat, just a short walk from the waves.

Treat Yourself to Luxury

Al Bustan Palace Ritz Carlton Beach
Lay beachside and at Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel. (Photo: Marriott International)

Al Bustan is a beach synonymous with five-star luxury and home to one of Oman’s most sought-after resorts: Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel. This lavish retreat sits right on its namesake shore, the majority of which is kept private for guests’ use — though non-guests can still access some of the beach.

The sands are as soft as sugar, while wooden dhows (traditional fishing boats) bob on the waves. It’s a serene scene for enjoying Oman’s year-round sunshine, with plenty of adventures, too: Rent snorkeling gear to seek out sea turtles and coral, book a private yoga session on the beach, or explore the bay by paddleboard, sailboat or kayak.

Soak Up the Seclusion

Tiwi Beach Oman
Visit Tiwi Beach for secluded serenity. (Photo: Getty Images)

Looking for that picture-perfect beach for long, lazy days where you can swim, sunbathe and walk in blissful solitude? Well, Tiwi Beach is one of those spots. When the weekend visitors have departed, this long, pebbly cove between Muscat and Sur feels like your very own secret.

Turquoise waves lap the smooth, silky pebbles on the shore, and you can scramble and swim between several bays. There are no facilities here, but the sense of seclusion and tranquility will leave you feeling refreshed, and the fishing village of Tiwi is nearby for supplies.

Walk on the Wild Side

Al Mughsail Beach
Let the waves crashing along a rugged coast wash away your worries. (Photo: Getty Images)

The star of Salalah, in southern Oman’s Dhofar province, Al Mughsail Beach features four miles of soft white sands — so while it’s a popular shore, it never feels crowded. If your idea of holiday heaven involves sunbathing in solitude, letting the kids run wild and ending the day with barefoot sunset strolls, you’re in the right place.

This is a rugged coastline surrounded by towering sea cliffs and countless caves to explore, plus the nearby blowholes (a short walk from the beach) that send up huge torrents of water when the waves roll in. Pack a picnic and enjoy the show.