Located in the very south of the country, the province of Dhofar and its capital, Salalah, offer a very different experience to the rest of the Oman. From June to August the khareef monsoon winds blow in heavy rains that see the sharp mountains covered in a softening blanket of green more reminiscent of a tropical rainforest than the Arabian Peninsula. In the lee of the mountains, frankincense trees live off the sparse moisture that makes it this far, producing their aromatic gum which has been the principal source of wealth for the region for millennia. Ancient villages and ports attest to this trade, as do the few remains of the legendary city of Ubar.
We recommend visiting Salalah at the end of a more comprehensive tour of Oman, as it makes the ideal place to relax in at the end of a trip. A few days here will suffice, with at least one day visiting the coastline that lies to the west of the city – blowholes, white beaches and rocky scenery await – and perhaps a day to the east where historical villages and ruins rule the shores.