Welcome to Oman

The Sultanate of Oman is in the Middle East, on the southeastern end of the Arabian Peninsula. It borders the United Arab Emirates in the northwest, Saudi Arabia in the west, and Yemen in the southwest. Oman has two exclaves separated from it by the United Arab Emirates, the Musandam Peninsula and Madha.

The oldest independent state in the Arab world was a sultanate known as Muscat and Oman until 1970. The country was the most influential power in the region during the 19th century; it controlled Zanzibar and other territories. Since the late 19th century, it has had strong links with Britain.

Oman covers an area of 309,500 km², making it slightly smaller than Poland, or about twice the size of the US state of Georgia.

The country offers a variety of beautiful topographical features. There are valleys between rugged mountain ranges with terraced orchards where pomegranates, apricots, and roses grow, and extensive stretches of a vast plain with gravel desert interspersed with wadis and large pools of water in the middle. Oman’s main cities line up neatly along the coast.

Today the country has a population of 4.45 million people (in 2020), of whom 61% (2.7 million) are Omanis. The capital and largest city is Muscat (pop. 300,000). Spoken language is Arabic (official). The majority of Oman’s population is (Ibadi) Muslim.

What is Oman known for?

Oman is known for Arabian horses, dromedaries, wild asses, green turtles, the Oryx antelope (the national animal), frankincense trees, and date palms. Oman is famous for its ancient aflaj oases irrigation system, terraced orchards (Jebel Akhdar), adobe fortresses, lots of mosques, wadis (stream valleys), dhows (traditional Arabian sailing ships), meteorites, and Al Said, the world’s third-largest yacht, owned by the Sultan. The country’s staple food is chicken, fish, and lamb (no pork, please) and coffee.


During the Summer months (April to September), the climate remains moderate in the Al Hajar Mountain range and Dhofar region, a rarity on the Arabian Peninsula where Summer temperatures frequently exceed 40 degrees Celsius. The ideal time to visit Oman is from September to March, when the climate is a refreshing 25 to 30 degrees Celsius.


Oman’s national currency is the Omani Rial (OMR), with the lower denominations known as ‘Baisa’. Rial notes range from OMR 1 to OMR 50, while Baisas are available in note form in denominations of 100 and 500 with 1,000 Baisa equating to One Rial. Coins are also available in 5, 10, 25 and 50 Baisa denominations but may not be accepted at all stores and outlets The Omani Rial is the third highest-value currency in the world and the Central Bank of Oman https://cbo.gov.om/ provides updated information on foreign exchange rates and the history of the currency. Most banks in Oman provide Visa or Mastercard facilities through their branches and ATMs.


Oman is ranked as one of the safest and most relaxing countries in the world and is home to some of the most welcoming people in the world. However, when visiting anywhere it is always recommended to take the necessary safety precautions and to store passports, money and other valuables in a closed bag or hotel safe.Oman also has excellent road infrastructure – nevertheless, caution is advised when travelling on the Sultanate’s roads. Speed limits are in place at all times and clearly indicated through road signage.IMPORTANT CONTACTS IN THE EVENT OF AN EMERGENCY Several foreign embassies and consulates are located in Muscat, handling both major and minor diplomatic affairs. Working weeks are usually Sunday to Thursday.

Travel Advice

Oman is one of the safest and most relaxing countries to visit and is home to some of the most welcoming people in the world. Here are a few helpful pointers and tips to help you make the most of your visit to the Sultanate and gain a better understanding of the country’s culture, customs and laws.

Country Profile

Official Name

Saltanat Uman
short form: Arabic: عمان ʻUmān
int’l long form: Sultanate of Oman
int’l short form: Oman
former: Muscat and Oman

ISO Country Code

om, OMN

Actual Time

Thu-Feb-11  17:40

Local Time

UTC +4h

Country Calling Code


Capital City

Muscat (pop. over 400 000)

Other Cities

Dhofar, Salalah, Nizwa, Sohar, Sur.


Location: Middle East, Southeast Arabian Peninsula, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and the Persian Gulf, between Yemen and UAE.
Area: 309,500 km² (119,498 sq. mi.)
Terrain: Central desert plain, rugged mountains in north and south.


Nationality: Noun–Oman. Adjective–Omani
Population: 4,45 million (2020)
GNI per capita PPP: $ 41,680 (year)
Ethnic groups: Arab, Baluchi, East African (Zanzibar), South Asian (Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi)
Religions: Ibadi Muslim 75%; Sunni Muslim, Shia Muslim, Hindu, Christian.
Languages: Arabic (official), English, Baluchi, Urdu, Swahili, Hindi, and other Indian dialects.
Literacy: approx. 80% (total population)