Diving in Oman, Middle East & Red Sea

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Oman is located on the eastern part of the Arabian Peninsula in the Middle East. The waters that surround it are from the Gulf of Oman in the north and Arabian Sea in the east.

Oman's doors were once closed to visitors and they just opened recently paving the way for pristine diving experience. It is touted to sport the best of scuba diving in the Gulf with excellent corals and marine life.

Diving is concentrated on three main areas but the dives are varied so there are plenty of activities for all levels of divers.

The popular dives in the Muscat area are found in the Daymaniyat Islands sporting large pelagic fishes and thriving coral reef with excellent water visibility. The deepest area of the dive bottoms at 30m.

There is a wreck in Bander Khayran, the Al Munnassir at 30m deep which was intentionally sunk by the government to create an artificial reef. She now lies upright and attracts several large pelagic fishes such as gigantic morays, schooling snapper and goatfish including sea turtles and rays.

Other popular diving destinations are found in the Musandam area. The best here is the Caves dive site with fantastic chambers and tunnels teeming with lobsters, shrimps, and cruising turtles. Large pelagic fishes are best seen in Lima Rock such as schooling jacks and tunas including whale sharks too in the cooler months. This site is suitable for novice and advanced divers as the currents get very strong.

Mirbat in Salalah is famous for spotting dolphins and the plenitude of huge pelagic fishes such as sharks, octopus, snapper, turtles, and morays.

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The government of Oman is an active participant in marine conservation efforts. Testament to this cause is the establishment of Daymaniyat Marine Nature Reserve ensuring the longevity of Oman's rich marine biodiversity.

Oman has a tropical desert climate.

The water temperature hovers around 19°C/66F to 28°C/82F for the whole year.

The water visibility averages 15m to 30m but gets cloudy only because of rushing nutrients rich water that also increases marine life in the area.

Oman sports a year round diving season.

Natural hazards include dry desert and humid coast areas which are uncomfortable to most westerners.

The main point of entry to Oman is the Muscat International Airport in Muscat where all of international flights land. There are many western airlines serving direct flights to Oman.

Cruise ships also regularly dock in the port in Muscat but not a lot of ferries.

You can also get in with your car if you're coming from different points of the Middle East as long as you have supporting documents.

In the mainland, the common transportation are buses, taxis, and rental cars.

The general transportation system of Oman is excellent.

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