Cruising with Dolphins in Oman
Back in April 2015 I was lucky enough to visit the United Arab Emirates for the second time to see my Aunt who at the time lived in Ras Al-Khaimah, this time with an entourage of my family and JS. It was a pretty excellent trip but our cruise through the Musandam Khasab Fjords in Oman was a definite highlight.
Now I know what you’re thinking… Fjords in Oman? Well…
Okay, so they don’t look quite like the fjords that probably popped into your head as you read that sentence but still, pretty serene right?
We travelled to Khasab from Ras al-Khaimah via car which took about an hour and a half (not including the border crossing). The trip is also possible from Dubai but takes closer to 3 hours.
The drive from Ras-Al Khaimah to Khasab is wonderful at times – full of mountainous scenery, deserts full of camels, and roadsides filled with goats. But then you drive past a massive construction plant of some kind which ruins it a bit. But once over the border into Oman, the majority of the drive is across winding cliffs roads alongside the ocean.
For our trip, we decided to make it an overnight adventure by staying at the Atana Khasab Hotel the night before, a four star hotel set into the mountainside, overlooking the ocean. It’s literally in the middle of nowhere but I think that’s what I liked about it – so much more chilled in comparison to Dubai.
The next morning we were up bright and early for our much anticipated dhow cruise. So at 9am we were greeted by a tour representative at our hotel who showed us the way to our destination (we followed in our rental car). At first, the location was not appealing… We were taken to a small fishing marina, which melt a lot like rotting fish, and had to jump across about three boats before reaching the boat we would be spending the morning on. However, we soon perked up when we realised that our group of five would be the only group on board!
As we set off towards to the fjords, we sat back to relax and take in the scenery. We were also offered tea, coffee, juice and water, as well as fresh fruit, from the two crew members on board as we picked up speed. About 20-30 minutes into the journey, the crew suddenly started shouting to us and pointing at the water. Having been on the tour before a year earlier, I knew exactly what they were pointing out… dolphins!
Tip: the more noise you make, the more they jump!
When we weren’t marveling at the dolphins, we had the opportunity to sit back, relax and take in the scenery around us before making a stop at Telegraph Island where we got off the boat and went for a snorkel. There were hundreds of fish in this area, so definitely make the most of those snorkels!
After a good amount of time to swim in the ocean, we climbed back on board the boat ready for our journey back to the mainland and were offered more refreshments and snacks as well as towels to dry ourselves off. We were also super lucky and had more dolphins following us back! Amazing.
Overall, this was a pretty amazing trip and definitely one I would recommend if you are in the UAE for a couple of weeks like I was. It’s such a great break from the cities and the dolphins and scenery combined are just amazing.
Fancy doing this on a future holiday?
Pin it to remind you later!
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The cruise we paid for was offered by Dolphin Khasab Tours. Included in the tour was the traditional Omani dhow cruise, fresh fruit, drinks (including tea, coffee and water), towels and the use of snorkels and flippers once out on the water.