After picking us up from Muscat and showing us around Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque in the morning, Talal drove us about 2 hours towards Wadi Bani Khalid, a literal oasis in the middle of the desert.
We stopped for a few photos along the way for some photo ops.
Once you arrive at Wadi Bani Khalid, you’ll see palm trees everywhere, just like what you imagined an oasis would look like.
Follow the streams of drinking water to the lake. You can’t swim just yet because this is where their drinking water comes from.
You can grab shelter from the sun at the gazebo by the bridge over the lake.
Weave around the bridge and café and continue walking up on the right into the gorge. You’ll get more privacy here from the rest of Oman, so we stripped down and got straight to swimming.
Wadi Bani Khalid is one of the popular wadis in Oman where foreigners and locals alike can go for a dip in the crystal clear waters of the gorge.
Stop along wherever for a swim, or keep hiking inland for more swimming holes.
Talal showed us plenty of small little waterfalls to climb up through, small rivers to do a quick swim around, and diving holes to jump into (see following 8 second video):
What made it even better was that Ramadan season ensured nobody else else was around to bother us or take any our stuff; Wadi Bani Khalid became our little own playground for a few hours.
If you decide to venture further into the underground cave, be forewarned you have to be a pretty decent swimmer to get there — it involves swimming under and through a small tunnel to get inside. And Talal warned us to not bring anything that isn’t solidly waterproof or can be dropped; if you lose something you might lose it forever…it’s pretty deep!
After about 1-2 hours here, we headed back to the car and drove on for the desert of Wahiba Sands.
- At time of posting in Wadi Bani Khalid, Oman, it was 38 °C - Humidity: 52% | Wind Speed: 8km/hr | Cloud Cover: clear