5 reasons to visit Salalah even when it’s not Khareef

Titash chakraborty –

Just because Khareef is over doesn’t mean that Salalah is no longer a viable place to travel. There are still ample reasons as to why Salalah should definitely still be in your go-to list.
Here are the top five reasons that should inspire you to push for that trip to the Southern part of the Sultanate even when the monsoon season is over.

The lost city of Ubar
It won’t be called the Atlantis of the Desert for nothing. If you are a history buff or someone into fascinating tales, head out to Ubar located about two hours from the city proper of Salalah. What’s out there? A bunch of ruins and a big hole on the ground. It may look like nothing from afar but its historical significance will blow your mind. Did you know that Ubar used to be an important stop in the trade route and people go their for their travel needs? It is also one of the best places to trade frankincense because it was very close to the frankincense farms?

Taqah Castle
An old city located 33 kilometers east of Salalah, Taqah Castle is one of the most famous castles of the region and was built in the 19th century AD. What makes this unique is that it used to be a private residence for a tribal leader, Sheikh Ali bin Taman Al Ma’shani – the grandfather of the mother of Sultan Qaboos. Taqah Castle became the property of the government in the first half of the 20th century during the times of Sultan Said bin Taimur, the father of Sultan Qaboos. During the 1960s the castle was expanded by adding the outer wall and its four towers. The castle was more recently renovated during the times of Sultan Qaboos and reopened as a museum in 1994. The rooms of the castle are now used to display numerous exhibits such as weapons, cookware, and tools that were essential to the old Omani way of life. Between its architectural design, plantations and ancient contents, the Castle is a unique place that must be included in a visit to Salalah. Don’t forget to wait for an unforgettable view of the sunset from the famous point in the castle.

Sumhuram and Khor Rori
Known to be part of the frankincense road, Samharam city tells the story of an ancient civilization in Dhofar and its reputed port which history dates back to 1000 BC. Also known as Khor Rori, inscriptions discovered in the region spoke of a town called Samharam, a port city for the region that was like today renowned worldwide as the main source of frankincense. Legend states that in these ruins also stands the remains of a palace that is said to be have been home to the famed Queen of Sheba. An ostentatiously wealthy monarch, she reputedly showered King Solomon with lavish gifts of frankincense. This unique site offers an overview of the ancient town, and the crystal waters of the Sea of Oman, and is a must-visit attraction.

Marneef Cave
Right next to the famous Mughsayl beach is the Marneef Cave and the Blow Holes, the charm of this place starts with the the surrounding mountain that has several benches for tourists to enjoy the marvelous view of the beach and the blowholes – Al Marneef Blowholes, which are also called Al Mughsail Blowholes are little caves along the edge of the cliff that become natural fountains as the waves crash into the edge of the mountain. Between the white sand beach of Mughsayl, the magnificent mountain, the deep cave, and the charming fountains, Al Marneef Cave is the perfect escape for all nature lovers.

Mughsayl Beach
With crystal clear waters and long stretches of white sand — Mughsayl beach is probably one of the most famous tourist attractions in the Dhofar Region. Although the annual Khareef season brings people from all over the world to these regions, this white sand beach has a year-round appeal to its visitors. Tucked away between mountains, the beach is surrounded by mountains on either side creating a picturesque landscape making it the perfect picnic spot. Huts at Mughsayl Beach are very traditional in style. They are made large enough to accommodate an entire family. Besides the sitting area, the hut provides barbecue making area for grilling your lunch.