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Trace Oman’s coastline south of Muscat and you’ll reach the port city of Sur. Historically one of the country’s most important trading ports, it’s now home to Oman’s only surviving traditional dhow-building yard.

Step through the gate and you’re instantly swallowed by a palette of burnt golds and browns – the teak and cedar used to craft these traditional boats. Factor in the woody scent that fills the air with fragrance, and an endless soundtrack of hammering that rings out over the lagoon, and it’s a living, breathing embodiment of Sur’s maritime past.

In fact, every inch of Sur is anchored to the sea it looks out over. Stand on the seafront Corniche for a sweeping view of the dhows gliding in to the port, guided by the three watchtowers of Ayjah – a whitewashed village on the other side of the lagoon that’s speared by a three-storey lighthouse.

Turn your back on the sea for a minute, though, and Sur offers up a rich tapestry of paint-peeling merchant houses, crumbling castles and a bustling central souk. Beyond its borders, the Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve and the ever-shifting landscapes of Al Sharqiyah – the East – lie waiting to be explored.

Explore Sur

Time Zone

GMT +3 hours.

Flight Time

Approx. 8 hours. Direct flights are available from London and indirect services are available via other Middle Eastern cities.


OMR - Omani Rial

Visa Information

British passport holders are required to purchase a visa on arrival to Oman.


Arabic and English are widely spoken.

Health Info

No special vaccines are required or recommended for travel to Oman.

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