The land of Salalah, Oman

Asia | | June 4, 2010 at 12:05 am


Salalah, also known as the land of frankincense, is the second largest city in the Sultanate of Oman. What makes it even more special for the citizens of the country, is the fact that it’s the birthplace of the Sultan, Sultan Qaboos Bin Said.

Traditionally speaking, the Sultan lives in Salalah, rather than in Muscat. However, Sultan Qaboos has ditched this trend, and has preferred living in Muscat since he ascended the throne in 1970.

Salalah Oman tourism


Despite being close to the Arabian Desert, Salalah enjoys a tropical climate throughout the year. The south-west monsoons make their presence felt here, when the period from late June to early September brings respite to the Omanis in the form of showers. Oman, however, is hot; and this is one reason why people from Muscat flock to Salalah to enjoy the monsoon and be spared the torturous heat that they have to bear.

This (late June to early September) is the best time to visit the city.


The city of Salalah is called ‘the perfume capital of Arabia’. It is a popular tourist destination owing to its topography. The mountains nearby and the abundant bursts of frankincense trees make for a sharp contrast in comparison to most other parts of Oman.

If you visit Wadi Dawkah and Shisr, the abundance of frankincense trees will blow you away. The existence of the affiliated ports of Khor Rori and Al-Balid stand witness to the fact that trade in frankincense flourished here for many centuries. This city was one of the most important trading centers of the world with regards to the ‘perfume’ market.


The countryside is lush green, and makes for quite a breathtaking view. Finding herds of cattle here during the monsoon is not a rare phenomenon.

Leopards and hyenas can be spotted here. Trees such as the Baobab tree are common. Salalah sports the kind of flora and fauna that is commonly seen in countries like Africa.

Extensive coconut cultivations line the whole of Salalah. In ancient times, the coir from the husk of the fruit of the local variety was used to stitch the planking of the sewn boats that were traditional in nature. However, in today’s date, the immature fruit is mostly sold as tender coconut for drinking the water therein.

Salalah Leopards


These would include –

  • Job’s Tomb
    Also called as an-Nabi Ayyub, it makes for a very popular excursion spot from Salalah.

Jobs Tomb salalah

  • Taqa
    Located 35 km from Salalah, this fort is an absolute must-see.
  • Wadi Darbat
    Located close to Taqa is this beautiful green wadi (valley), with a river that runs through it. This river doesn’t dry up even in the hottest months, which adds to its beauty. There is a picnic place close by, which is shaded by large trees.

Wadi Darbat

  • Mirbat
    Located at 70 km from Salalah, this place has a beautiful beach. Mirbat is also known for its hospitality. The locals around this area are very friendly.


  • Khor Rori
    This is an inlet where fresh water and sea water come together. It is a protected area, and sightings of migratory birds are oft found.

Khor Rori

  • The Road to Dalkut
    This road near the Yemeni border leads past Mughsayl and up in to the Dhofar mountains. It is essential to carry your passport along with you, since there is an army checkpoint after about 30 minutes of going down the road. After passing the 2nd checkpoint of the army, the most fascinating part of the road will begin. Mountains and valleys outstretch each other. The lime stone formations are quite a visual treat. The beach houses the wreck of a helicopter half buried in the sand. It has never been moved from there.
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  1. vareeja says:

    Salalah, despite lying close to the Arabian desert, enjoys a tropical climate through most of the year. The town is subjected to the south-west monsoons.
    This period (late June to early September) is known as the Khareef season. Visitors from across the Arabian Gulf States, mostly from the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia flock to Salalah to enjoy the monsoon and avoid the harsh heat faced by the rest of the region during the same period. Many residents of Muscat also make the journey to Salalah to enjoy their summer break.
    In this period, the city’s population doubles with the tourist population in the 2007 Khareef season reaching 176,975.[

  2. eerene says:

    the wadi darbat river doesnt even dry up in the hottest days, which is really a worth see…

    The city of Salalah is called ‘the perfume capital of Arabia’. It is a popular tourist destination owing to its topography

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