Wadis of Oman


Cutting through heavily folded rock, with pretty streams and swaying palms nestled in their beds, the wadis of Oman are a major attraction. It is a unique environmental system characterised by variety, diversity, and a wealth of natural attractions. Within this fertile environment, people have lived in the wadis (valleys) of Oman for thousands of years.

Wadi Bani Khalid is located 203 kilometres (126 miles) from Muscat. Take the Bidbid – Sur Road in Al Sharqiyah South Governorate, which forks into a side road leading to wilayat Bani Khalid , then weaves up across the eastern AlHajar Mountains to Bida village deep in the mountains. There you can enjoy the spectacular views of the fertile valley with its spreading trees and abundant water that tumbles down as waterfalls in some areas to form natural pools of water. The road then cuts through the valley to reach Muqal town, well known for its cave. To explore this cave, you’ll have to exercise great caution as you may need to crawl or even scramble in some places. Here the gushing waters creates a loud rushing sound and collects in pools, only to dissipate and gather - once again – in small lakes which the villagers have used to fill three irrigation canals.

Wadi Al Shab
is located in Tiwi, part of Sur in Al Sharqiyah South Governorate . It lies 140 kilometres (87 miles) from Muscat on the Qurayat – Sur Coastal Road. Fresh water cascading from tops of the mountains meet the briny sea water on its banks, creating an environmental diversity unique to this wadi, and making it stand on a pedestal of its own when compared with the other wadis (valleys) in the Sultanate.

You’ll doubtless enjoy the adventurous journey through Wadi Shab, as you can only meander through certain areas by boat, or take pleasure in a refreshing hike through this mountainous region.

The Sink Hole or Hawiyat Najm Park
is situated in the Dabab area of Wilayat Qurayat, Muscat Governorate, and can be reached via the road linking Qurayat to Sur. It is a deep natural depression filled with water, called Hawiyat Najm. The locals say that a meteor fell on this spot of land, resulting in the natural depression and forming a small lake.

Wadi Bani Awf (Suspended Road)
- If you love excitement, adventure, and winding mountain roads, you’ll find a challenge in Wadi Bani Awf (The Suspended Road), Al Batinah South Governorate . The entrance of the wadi is about one and a half hours from Muscat, some 43 km after Nakhal.

To traverse this road, you must have a four-wheel drive, and the driver must be an expert in mountain driving. The road is very steep, and it takes about 3 hours to cross this wadi. You will have to swim sometimes, or jump, but excitement is guaranteed! The road goes along a 5 metre (15 feet) wide path that is more than 100 meters (300 feet) high in places. There are wires connecting both sides of the wadi, which the adventurous use to cross from one side to the other.

Wadi Al Khoudh
is situated in Wilayat Al Seeb Muscat Governorate, and is considered one of the largest wadi basins in the Sultanate. Pools are formed in the wadi following heavy rain. According to the villagers, children used to wade through the abundant water of the village, and that is how the village got its name, as Khoudh is the Arabic for wade.

Wadi Bani Kharous
  - This is one of the best known Omani wadis. A visitor to Wadi Bani Kharous is attracted by its fascinating flora and fauna and beautiful landscapes. You are curious to discover unknown sights in its various villages. The landscape casts a magic spell, and the gentle breeze woos you to love its nature, air, and water, an irresistible trio.

This wadi is located in Wilayat AlAwabi, Al Batinah South Governorate.

Wadi Damm
is located near Al Ayn village, Wilayat Ibri, Al Dhahirah Governorate, and is about 45 km (28 miles) from Ibri city. It is a seasonal wadi, dry much of the year. It relies on the rain which gathers in its water ponds. This wadi is remarkable for its characteristic rocky formations sculpted by erosion. Despite the small amount of water stored in its stream during the dry season, the stream is distinguished by a variety of smooth rocks, out of which nature has formed beautiful water ponds, and this smooth rocky nature is a feature of the water ponds. One of the rocky formations sculpted by erosion is a small cave near the water pool, and it makes a fine camping site for tourists. Also, the wide expanse of spaces of its dry riverbed a short distance from water sources, constitute the best location to take a break, camp and savour the virgin beauty of nature. All you need to get there is a four-wheel drive.

Wadi Danak (Fida)
  originates in Fida town in Dhank Province, specifically in Al Khili, an area so steep it is considered a water reservoir for Yanqul and Shuab wadis, whose waters cascade down the face of the mountains. Wadi Danak’s water runs all year round and is home to a multitude of birds. Flanking this wadi on both banks are picturesque villages, which prompted Dhank Province to take Al Dhahirah Governorate as its emblem.

Wadi Ad Dayqah
  is a tourist attraction, being one of the easy-to-reach wadis, located near Muscat Governorateabout 90 kilometres from Wadi Aday. To cross this wadi is to explore the Omani mountains and their natural diversity. About 120 wadis converge into its path, which stretches from Wilayat Dimma Wa Ta’iyeen in Al Sharqiyah North Governorate to its estuary in Wilayat Qurayat, Muscat Governorate. It is one of the year-round flowing wadis. A dam has been built in this wadi and is considered the biggest in the Sultanate. It consists of two dams: the main one is 75 metres (246 feet) high, and the secondary one is an earthen dam 48.5 metres (149 feet) high. The main dam includes a tower for water drainage. The dam lake is 8 kilometres (5 miles) long, and the dam can hold about 100 million cubic metres (more than 8,000 acre feet) of rain water.

Wadi Darbat
is located in Salalah (Dhofar Governorate). This wadi carves its way through hills and highlands until it reaches Khawr Ruri, where it empties into the Arabian Gulf.

During autumn, the wadi’s water descending from the mountains forms magnificent waterfalls cascading from a height of up to 30 metres (100 feet). The wadi is distinguished by its virgin nature and thick botanical cover, in addition to a natural spring and a number of caves. The wadi’s water is the source of the water filling Teeq Cave’s cells .