Laid back with a rich history is the best way to describe the Omani capital
Time Out Dubai staff
Stay... Budget Ibis Hotel: Ibis Hotel is one of the more comfortable budget offerings. There are plenty of home comforts too, from Wi-Fi and restaurants to a gym. www.ibishotel.com Luxury The Chedi: When people think luxury in Muscat, they usually think of The Chedi, with its manicured gardens, fantastic spa and amazing restaurants. www.ghmhotels.com
Eat... Budget Copper Chimney: Copper Chimney gets its name from the large chimney inside and its copper pots – but it’s the heart-warming Indian food you’re likely to remember it for. CBD Area, Besides Central Bank of Oman.
Expensive Vue: Vue by Shannon Bennett is the ultimate in Muscat fine dining. Here you’ll find no menu, but rather four-, five- or nine-course ‘journeys’ of brilliant contemporary French cuisine. Al Bustan Hotel, Muscat.
Must see... It’s turtle season from June until September, when the mighty creatures crawl onto Oman’s sandy beaches to lay their eggs. See this miracle of nature at night, then head back early the next day to see them hatch. Sur, outside of Muscat, is a good spot for this – try Turtle Beach Resort.
Must do... Something different – for the Middle East – is the opportunity to star gaze in the PDO Planetarium. Seven different shows are on offer, three of which are locally produced. No shows on Mon, Fri or public holidays.
Flight time 45 minutes.
Getting there Oman Air fly between Dubai and Muscat. A return ticket costs around Dhs800. www.omanair.com
Time Out recommends Oman’s caves are among the most impressive in the world and trips to Al Hoota Cave, with its own underground lake, can be arranged from Muscat. Call tour company Promo Oman (+968 24 490 060), but book beforehand as places each day are limited.