Oman, Muscat Deccember 12
Had 5 days vacation left for this year and looked for some not too far away destination to get away from cold Germany. Oman seemed a good choice, had seen some nice reports on that in internet platforms. Emirates, Quatar Airlines offer cheap flights with 1 or 2 stops. I choose a direct flight with Oman Air from Frankfurt, which gets you into Muscat in only 6.5 hours. Went to Barka and the Al Sawadi Beach Resort, which is 80 km away from Muscat, transfer on good highways takes about 40 minutes. Al Sawadi is a huge place with sea or garden view rooms, swimming pool, wellness area, bar, restaurant, nightclub, dive center and a never ending beach. Meals were buffet style a good mixture of Arabic and Indian food with a touch of Western taste, the deserts were mouthwatering and could easily spoil your whole diet plans. Temperature was around 24 degrees and sunny, ideal for some relaxing holidays. The Extra Divers Center offers a two tank morning dive and depending on guests one afternoon dive. Most times they go out to the Daymaniat Islands, three quarters of an hour away from the resort. Water was calm, temperature reached 26 degrees C, visibility most times was only around 8 – 10 m. It seems to be like this most of the time. Fishlife and coral is good and plentiful, we had some turtles, cuttle fish, leopard sharks, lots of big honeycomb moray eels, sting and eagle rays. You could dive your own profile with buddy, it was one hour or 50 bar back to the surface. It´s easy diving, only a little bit of a current was running on two dives. Often you just swim along the reef round the island, the boat will follow you all the time.
For two days I went two another place 10 km south of Muscat, the Extra Divers Lodge. They offer beach bungalows, which are really nice, all the usual amenities around the place. Diving was about the same, however the coastline there is totally different. It looks like Norway Fjords missing only the green vegetation, awesome to drive along there. The dive guide told me, in summer vis is much better, around 30 – 40 m, however then it very hot outside, temperatures reach more than 40 C and with the humidity it´s hell.