Key information: Dhofar Mountains
- Oman’s historic southern province has a surprisingly moderate climate, thus much greener coastal mountains than in the north.
- Interesting and varied walking.
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- Length: Your choice
- Maximum Altitude: 1,450m
- Level of Difficulty: Variable
Oman’s huge southern province has a long history of prosperity as a centre for the frankincense trade, to which its many ancient sites and timeless villages are evidence.
Dhofar has surprisingly green plains by the coast, and (at some times, anyway) much more vegetated mountains than further north, caused by its monsoon – but also the huge, sandy desert of the Empty Quarter inland.
Dhofar’s coastal climate is a lot gentler than the rest of the country, with temperatures seldom over 30°C. It is humid pre-monsoon, ie March to mid-June. Inland, it is hot.
The mountains along the coast provide the region’s best walking.
Wadi Dharbat/Dirbat east of Salalah is a fine, green-floored wadi with excellent walking in its upper reaches.
The Baobab Forest east of Salalah is more a big stand of these enormous, ancient, spectacular trees. A short walk from a steep 4x4 road.
Jebel Samhan NR: This gorgeous reserve descends from the plateau around Jebel Samhan, Dhofar’s highest mountain at 1,450m, to the coastal plain east of Salalah. You can see wildlife from leopards to ibex to gazelles. The plateau itself is interesting, with fields, cattle and camels, and Jebali villages. The area makes for good walking.
Jebel Qamu: This undulating grassy plateau west of Salalah makes for charming unstructured walking.
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