Sunday, May 28, 2023 | Dhu al-Qaadah 7, 1444 H
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Closer to home!


Oman’s domestic tourism is all set to receive a major fillip as the lockdown days are over and more and more sectors are opening up day by day attracting increased number of footfalls everywhere.

Citizens and residents can look forward to visiting the various local destinations which are at a short drive away, immerse in the historic museums and bask in the sunlight of Jebel Shams, take a dip in the blue turquoise water of Sharqiyah, and spend a holiday in the misty Dhofar.

However, various domestic tourism verticals, such as SME’s and startups in the tourism sector, food and beverage outlets, the car rentals and adventure activities operators, will have to wait till the authorities give nod to open up the public tourism places which have been closed since the pandemic broke out in March this year.

“Domestic tourism will be the first sector that will make a major leap in the post-covid era, while other sectors will follow the local tourism surge,” Renee Johnson, a travel and tourism expert told the Observer.

“This substantial demand for domestic tourism will be complemented by the delay in opening the international ports and people’s initial reluctance in making extensive international travel,” he adds.

Underlining what experts said, the local destinations are readying themselves to the expectations of local tourists comprising different nationals.

All the amenities located around the major tourist destinations, from deserts to caves, from sand dunes to beaches, and from parks to taxis to coffee shops, are sprucing up to embrace the new normal and offer the unmatching value-added services to the yearning visitors.

“We are excited of welcoming the first batches of domestic tourists from across different parts of the country. We are all decked up and the services will be unique,” representative of a themed restaurant on the Muttrah Sea Road, which is frequented by hundreds of domestic tourists said.

However, going a step forward, the Ministry of Heritage and Tourism has stipulated various precautionary measures known as Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for tourism and hospitality sectors to ensure the safety of all local tourists, both citizens, and residents when roaming in Oman when the tourism sector is open.

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