Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Arabian Oryx Desert Camp: Tucked Amidst the Sand Dunes of Wahiba Sands, Oman

As a traveler, I have stayed at interesting hotels across many countries. But, only a few such stays are etched hard into memory. Either they are special due to their location or may be we met some great people while staying there. The Arabian Oryx Camp is one such place, but I remember it very well due to its special location. It is set amidst tall sand dunes and is especially sensational at sunrise and sunset. I stayed here for a 2 half days and a night and this review is based on my recent experience of staying here.

1) The Arabian Oryx camp looks like a typical Bedouin camp, but comes with all the basic luxuries like air conditioning, hot shower, hot tea kettle, etc. It is not too basic nor too gaudy luxurious.

2) The location of this camp is truly special. It is located right in between the sand dunes of Wahiba Sands. One can just walk from the camp and start climbing onto the dunes. This augurs well for those who are interested in watching the sunset from atop the dunes, dune surfing and dune boarding.

Arabian Oryx Desert Camp at Wahiba Sands, Oman
3) If you have a 4 wheel drive vehicle, then the vast expanse of dunes is just 2 minutes away and before you realize, you are doing some serious dune bashing.

4) The rooms are not too big, but they are snug and comfortable for something that is right in the middle of the desert.

5) All meals are included in the camp room tariff. Food is served at a common restaurant in buffet style. Meals include a mix of continental, Middle Eastern and Indian fare. Food is not exceptional, but pretty decent.

6) Evenings are interesting when they organize local dance performances and play traditional Bedouin music.

Beautiful Arabian Oryx Camp of Wahiba Sands, Oman
7) There is no internet connectivity at the camp and even data connectivity is only available near the restaurant area. It is truly remote.

8) The people running the place are very service oriented and take good care of their customers.

9) This is a great place to watch the desert sky and all the millions of stars in it. Apart from watching the desert sky, talking to friends or reading a book, there is nothing else to do during the night hours.

This camp is a nice place and I would definitely recommend this place for a true desert experience. I would have preferred a much more rural setup, but considering the harsh weather during the day, I would not mind the luxury.

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