The Big Ride

Oman: Playing in the sand, sea and sky

You can wild camp anywhere, great road quality, good drivers, clean free water everywhere, Friendly people
Food is not diverse, expensive country
Things we are loving
Hamed, camping without a fly under the stars, dates (yum), snorkelling, the desert, mountains


Oman is the second, and last country that was part of our impromptu detour between Azerbaijan  and India. We knew very little about the country prior to arriving, we were not sure what to expect apart from warm weather and sunny skies. What we found was a country filled with beauty, amazing landscapes unlike anything we have come across on the trip and some of the friendliest people we have met so far.

Oman is located in the Middle East and borders the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen with a very large coast  on the Arabian sea. Like all the countries in the region Arabic is the primary language spoken, however we found that nearly every person (young and old) we met spoke fairly good if not fluent english.


We crossed into Oman on Christmas day from the UAE through Hatta via Hwy. 5 (Oman) & 44 (UAE) Obtaining a visa was an easy process, which involved filling out a form at the border. On the day we crossed the border, there was a rush on, we happened to be next to an American and a couple from Lebanon, so we had some people to chat with while we all waited. After a few hours of waiting in a slow moving queue, we were fortunate enough to have the visa fee waived by the border agent when he learned we were on bicycles. The normal fee is 20 Omani Rials (£35) for 11-30 days, incase you are interested!

After a far from swift entry and exit from the border facilities, we headed out into Oman! Sadly, by the time we got back onto the road it was dark, we found out that my Reelight was completely kaput and therefore we veered off the road at the first turning. [I have updated the Reelight Review which you can see HERE]

We chose to come to Oman in part because of the weather. Their “winter” is similar to a Canadian summer. We had temperatures between 20º-35ºC and even in the evenings temperatures stayed in the 20’s especially at lower elevations. It was a very welcome change from the icy weather we had recently left in Azerbaijan.

It was our second night camping in the Gulf. We had read that camping is no problem anywhere, and that often you will find yourself with a neighbour as soon as you set up camp. Since we set up our camp in the dark, we didn’t have a great idea of where we were, or what was around us. We had hoped that no one would stumble upon us and that we weren’t in a busy area. However. after 10 minutes or so a truck approached. Now, it’s been six months since we began the trip and the way we feel when we see someone coming over to our camp at night has changed dramatically. Partially because of where we have been travelling, but more just because we are more comfortable with wild camping after 6 months on the road. At the beginning of the tour we would have been worried about someone telling us to move or would have worried that they were up to no good. Now, more often than not a night time visitor to your camp will be either 1) curious and just interested to see who you are and where you are from OR 2) want to invite you to their house or to give you some food, water, or bestow some other kind of kindness on you. Our Christmas night visitor was both, he swung around to ask if we needed anything and asked us where we were from, he then drove off only to return with orders from his father to bring us back to their home. We had already set up camp, so we stayed put, but it was a example of the kindness we found throughout the entire country.

The next morning there were a few trucks passing by our tent, and one stopped by a walled area and beckoned us over. The owner had a little garden filled with date palm trees and a little picnic area behind his gate. He gave me the grand tour, showed me where he hid the key, insisted we stay the night there (it was 7 am at this point). Next up was the Omani coffee and bowl of dates which he sent me off to share with sleeping beauty in the tent, as Claire had not awoken from her slumber (the excitement of Christmas wore her out).



Amazing plot, it was great having you in the off road trip. I’m glad you guys enjoyed it and wish you best of luck in your upcoming adventures.

I’ll keep following your blog to read more about the progress of your trip.

PS. You have to come back to Oman and we would like to see you guys again and again 😀

Warm regards,



I completely love you guys. You’re having such an amazing time! I am insanely jealous. I’ll write properly soon. ride safe. Mxx


I am so happy that your un-expected “detour” turned out so amazing! Sounds like you had an incredible time and I learned a lot about Oman just reading your post!


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