Muscat enchants visitors in a way that no other city in the Gulf can even begin to match. The old port area, is the site of the sultan’s main palace and a fascinating place to wander around. There are three forts in Muscat, all of which took on their more or less present form in the 1580s during the Portuguese occupation of Muscat. Mutrah Fort sits on a hill while Jalali and Mirani forts guard the entrance to Muscat. All of the forts are still used by the police and/or military and are closed to the public, but it is permitted to photograph them. Muscat has by far the best aquarium in the Gulf; all of the specimens on display are native to Omani waters and most are accompanied by thorough descriptions in English.
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Top things to do in Muscat
Sights and sounds of Muscat by night
Explore the bustling Muttrah souk, where the people, sights and smells will make you feel that you've been transported back in time. Wander along the corniche for the opportunity to take pictures of the city at night and then continue to the illuminated Al Alam Palace in the heart of Old Muscat. Finish the evening with a meal at a local restaurant specialising in Omani and Arabic cuisine.
Snorkelling cruise to the Daymaniyat islands
From Muscat there are a variety of snorkelling cruises to the Daymaniyat islands, ranging from a shared half-day trip to a private overnight yacht on which you can spend the night. The Daymaniyat islands consist of nine uninhabited islands that have been designated as a marine and nature reserve. The coral here is mostly undamaged and the clear waters are home to an array of different species of fish and other marine life, including a large number of sea turtles.
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