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Dec 22 2013

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Old Mutrah

First day in Muscat. We were staying at Mutrah, the port area. My travel mate was a little bit ill, with fever. Nothing that could not be solved with a good sleep but that was not a good start! I left the hotel to buy the ferry tickets for the following day. The idea was to start with Musandam Peninsula, which is an isolated area in Oman (to get to Musandam by land you need to cross the Emirates) to continue later with a classical trip around the country.

Second bad news: no ferry for the following day due to bad sea conditions. Definitely that was not my day! I bought two tickets for Thursday, inch’allah, knowing that that was going to break completely our plans but I did not have any other choice. With the tickets in my pocket, I left to discover Mutrah’s Corniche.

La Corniche is a nice area, with a long promenade, some interesting buildings and the mountains as background. At the eastern end of the harbor there is the Mutrah Fort, built by the Portuguese to watch the sea (and its pirates!) very closely. It was a sunny, warm day and I had already forgotten the winter in Paris 🙂 The sea was choppy and some distracted tourists got the second shower of the day. It was so funny that I decided to stay there for a while taking some pictures 🙂

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From the Corniche you can also visit the Mutrah Souq, maybe the most interesting souq in Oman. The atmosphere was nice and I quickly got used to the hazy light and the smell of frankincense inside. The souq was the perfect place to get lost for a while, a kind of Ali Baba Cavern, but traditional artifacts were rare to find. Instead, many Indians proposed me their best pashmina scarfs or my favorite team’s t-shirt. Damn globalization . .

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My Tips :

  • Mutrah Hotel. The first hotel built in Oman, good price /value and you can get the Corniche by foot. Double room costs 55€ /night. This was the cheapest hotel that we found in Oman and the only one that I will recommend!

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