Masqat is the capital and the largest city in Oman. The city occupies a beautiful strip of beachfront with resorts atand . With the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea to the north, the majestic grandeur of the Western Al Hajar Mountains lies to the south of Masqat. This part of Oman is all low lying, white washed buildings and the scenery from any point in the city is like well composed works of art with the mountains standing in stark and rugged contrast to the elegant, curving lines that are prevalent in the Islamic architecture of the buildings.
The Gulf of Oman is wonderfully clear and the blues look especially tantalising with the clear sky above reflected in their depths. The warm tropical waters host a myriad of marine life and there are dive schools and centres in and around the city for anyone wanting to immerse themselves in the beauty lying just under the surface of the sea. The beaches around Masqat tend to be quiet and tranquil, even with the influx of locals on the weekend.
Qantab Beach is one such place, being lively without being too chaotic or losing its sense of relaxation. The sandy cove has rocky formations jutting attractively from the water. A feeling of casual comfort is prevalent and visitors can’t help but relax and let any stress melt away in the soothing surroundings of the sand and sea and there are evening barbeques right on the beach.
Nearby Qurum Beach is also a comfortable destination with some water sports, places to stay on the beach and the same ambience of hospitality and casual comfort. The beachfront along the gulf near Masqat is a consistent and splendid blend of golden sand with some rocky formations strewn about that beautiful complement the brilliant azure blues of the water.
The city itself is the site of several mosques and the Grand Mosque in particular with its dazzling display of lights in the prayer hall stands out. The local fish market and other outdoor markets make interesting shopping excursions and the food, as can be imagined is rich with spices that weave their way from the city to the beachfronts.
Scattered palms offer little oases of shade from the bright desert sun. In some places the jagged cliffs of the mountains rise up behind the beach and create scenes that are breathtakingly rugged and the prominent desert landscape gives Masquat lends a somewhat abandoned and barren feeling to the beaches that is amazingly peaceful and unique.