Located a 2 hour drive from Muscat, the Wahiba Sands offer you a chance to experience Oman like you’ve never done before. Also known as the Sharqiya Sands or Ramlat al-Wahiba, this desert environment leaves you speechless with its rolling expanse of orange sand, breathtaking dunes that can reach up to 100 metres in height, and out-of-this-world beauty that speaks to the raw beauty of nature itself. It is one of the most famous attractions in Muscat, and is a must-visit destination for any visitor to Oman.

Many travellers often book a simple day trip to take a look at the vibrant dunes before returning to their cosy accommodations in Muscat. However, a discerning explorer knows that the best way to experience the Wahiba Sands is to spend a night or two out there to fully immerse yourself in its enchanting allure, whether through camping on your own or at a dedicated desert camp.



There are no permanent residential settlements in the Wahiba Sands, meaning you won’t find luxury hotels and resorts nestled in between its dunes. However, that doesn’t mean the desert is void of human presence. 

Bedouin groups have made the Wahiba Sands their home for millennia through their traditional nomadic way of life, living off the harsh land with their livestock and handcrafting delicate handicrafts that visitors can purchase before heading back to the city.

Visitors to the Wahiba Sands can also look forward to staying overnight at the various desert camps located in the northern area of the desert. Run by various service providers, these camps come with amenities and facilities in varying levels of luxury to help you feel comfortable out in the brutal desert landscape. 

These camps also often offer attractions such as dune bashing, dune trekking, camel rides, and quad biking to help you see a new side to the desert. If action activities aren’t your preference, you can simply sit back, soak in the breathtaking beauty of the Wahiba Sands, and watch for the stunning sunrise and sunset over the dunes.

Travellers who truly want to explore the rawness of the dunes can also go wild camping on their own, without the creature comforts a desert camp offers.


While entry into the desert is free, the price and luxury level of your overnight stay in the Wahiba Sands will vary depending on your camp or tour provider. 

If you are attempting to camp on your own, you will have to account for the rental cost of the four-wheel drive (or any other suitable vehicle that can take on the sandy dunes), as well as any camping equipment and supplies you require.

If you are staying at a desert camp accommodation, you can typically book a comprehensive package that includes transportation to and from the Wahiba Sands, accommodations, meals, and even attractions.

If you are staying at our luxury hotel in Muscat, our concierge service will be more than happy to help you arrange a stay out in the Wahiba Sands and make your entire experience seamless. Our concierge can also provide you with personalised recommendations for shopping in Muscat, massages and spas in Muscat, and fine dining in Muscat.


Where is the Wahiba desert?

The Wahiba desert (often referred to as the Wahiba Sands) is located to the south-east of Muscat, the capital city of Oman. The desert covers 12,500 square kilometres of area, spanning 180 kilometres from north to south and 80 kilometres from east to west. The main entrances to the desert are Bidiyah Castle and Al Wasil, both of which have a mix of gravel roads and sand tracks. It’s recommended to visit the desert between October and early April, which coincides with Oman’s winter – meaning cooler temperatures and breezy winds.

How do I get to Wahiba Sands?

Wahiba Sands is only accessible via driving. You can choose to rent your own FWD vehicle to drive directly into the desert itself, or if you’re staying at a desert camp, have the camp staff arrange for your transportation into the campsite. Our concierge service at the Chedi Muscat can help arrange for your transportation to Wahiba Sands so you can enjoy the desert without any worries.

How far is the Wahiba desert from Muscat?

The Wahiba desert is an estimated 2 hour drive from Muscat via FWD. Throughout your drive there you can take breaks as and when you please to enjoy the scenery, or to stop at various small towns before the entrance to the desert itself. Opting for a hired driver or tour guide to bring you to the Wahiba Sands ensures you can get the most out of your experience.

Is the Wahiba desert worth visiting?

If you are looking for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience Earth’s beauty at its barest and rawest, the Wahiba desert should be the place that you head to. Seeing the sun rise and set over its orange dunes is a memory that will stay with you forever, and other activities such as dune treks or camel rides only seal the deal.

Can you stay at the Wahiba Sands Desert Camps?

Yes. There are many desert camps in the Wahiba Sands for you to choose from if you want to spend a night or two out in the desert. If you are staying with us in the Chedi Muscat and want to continue the next leg of your trip in the Wahiba desert, fret not – our concierge service can help you make the arrangements necessary alongside our trusted partners. Contact us at T (968) 2452 4400 or (968) 9657 0336 for more information or email us at [email protected] to make early arrangements before your arrival at our hotel.

Show Less



  • Join GHM Newsletter


    • English
    Join GHM Newsletter
      °C °F