Travel Guide to Muscat

Indian Embassy in Muscat

Indian Embassy in Muscat is located at Jami'at Al-Dowal Al-Arabiya Street,Diplomatic Area, Al Khuwair, Musct, Oman

Phone‎: ‎+968.24684500

Visa Process for Indian Visitors to Muscat

  • A valid passport for 6 months from the date of travel
  • Visa application forms
  • Hotel confirmation proof
  • Return tickets
  • Travel Insurance

Time Required: 5 Working Days

About Muscat

Muscat is the Oman's largest city as well as its capital. The metropolitan city is also regarded as a global city. The total area of Muscat is 3500 sq km and is made up of six provinces. In the olden days, Muscat used to be an important port for trading between the east and the west. Muscat has developed drastically in the 70's and has become quite a popular tourist destination. One of the many reasons why people travel to Muscat is because of its rich history. The current city of Muscat used to be three separate towns, namely, Muscat, Matrah and Ruwi.

Places to Visit in Muscat

Once in Muscat, there are a number of places you can go to like, the Nizwa fort, you can go on a Wadi Safari in Wadi Bani Khalid, you can go on a safari tours in the Hajar mountains. You can also visit the Bait Al Zubair museum. If you'd like to have fun by the seaside then you should visit the Qurum beach or the Al Sifah beach. You should definitely make time to visit the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, the beautiful and majestic mosque will surely impress you. It doesn't matter if you're a fan of Opera or not, you should definitely consider visiting the Royal Opera House. Visiting Mohammed Al Ameen Mosque, one of the grandest mosques in Muscat, should definitely be on your list. You could go on a fun off road tour as well. If you're interested in exploring the nature along with wildlife, then you should definitely visit the Wadi Al Arbeieen. You could also go on a dolphin or whale watching trip while you're in Muscat.

How to Reach Muscat

Tourists generally prefer to travel to Muscat by air. Oman's main international airport is Muscat International Airport. It shouldn't take you more than 20 minutes to reach the city from the airport. You can easily hail a taxi from the airport to take you to the city. Almost all major airlines travel to Muscat and the number keeps increasing each year. You'll be able to fly from Salalah to Muscat at least twice every week. You can reach Muscat from Dubai by bus; the journey takes somewhere around 6 hours. You can also reach Muscat from Abu Dhabi by bus. You'll find all long-distance buses at Oman National Transport Company which is located in the city of Ruwi. You can also reach the city of Muscat from United Arab Emirates by car. In that case you'll have to cross the border in Al Ain, the journey typically takes somewhere around 5 hours. Muscat is also accessible from Yemen by road. It Will take you somewhere around 16 hours to get to Muscat from Yemen by road

Travelling in Muscat

Once in Muscat, you'll have no problem with transportation, Maxi Taxis are a popular mode of transportation, they are also referred to as 'baisa buses'. They are quite economical. Regular orange taxis will charge you significantly more than the maxi taxis. You'll find them around the hotels. For an Airport trip, you'll be charged around 8 Rial which can ideally be haggled down to 5 Rials. Bear in mind, Maxi Taxis will not go wherever you want them to, so it is important that you make sure the one you've hailed is going the way you want to go. A typical journey around Muscat will cost you around 300 Baisa. You could also rent a car to travel around Muscat. According to the Omani Police website, your home country's driving license will be valid in Oman for 90 days, but you should nevertheless ask for the same information from a car rental company. You'll be able to find offices of car rental companies in the arrivals terminal of the airport.

Best Time to Visit

Best time to visit Muscat is from November to April. During winter months, the temperature stays around 20 degrees which is ideal for tourists. Daytime is quite enjoyable but they’re still hot. If you wish to camp in the mountains during that time, then you know that it can be almost freezing cold. You might get rainfall in the mountains during late afternoons. If in case you're travelling to Oman during summer months you should be wary of the fact that it can be very hot. Summer months are not ideal for visiting Muscat. In case you're visiting Muscat during Ramadan month, there are a few thighs you shouldn't do. You shouldn't eat, drink or smoke during the daylight hours to respect their religion and traditions. Also, you should avoid wearing extravagant clothes during that time.

What to Pack?

There are a couple of things you should be mindful of while visiting Oman. The first and foremost consideration should be the fact that Oman is a Muslim country and as such, in order to show respect towards their religion and culture you should dress conservatively. Your shoulders and your knees should be covered at all times. Women should cover their hair while visiting a mosque. The desert as well as the coast can be very hot thus, you should wear long sleeve shirts, trousers and in order to protect your head from the sun you should wear a hat. If you wish to go camping in the mountains during the winter months, you should know that it can be freezing cold and thus you'll require proper and adequate winter wear. Below is a list of things you should definitely bring with you on a trip to Oman:

  • Pants appropriate for hiking
  • Hiking shoes
  • Proper headgear to protect your head from the sun like Hats
  • Sun glasses are a must
  • You should make sure that your clothes are loose fitting. it is recommended that you should wear natural fabrics like cotton etc. Natural fabrics are comfortable to wear in that climate and are also easier to clean than synthetic fabrics.
  • You can bring a scarf to wrap your head while visiting a mosque. Otherwise you can easily buy a scarf there for the purpose
  • If your plan includes watching a show at the Royal Opera House, then you should definitely bring your formals.
  • To go for a swim in a public beach, you 'd require a full sleeves T shirt and a pant that covers upto your knees at least. You should know that it is illegal in Muscat to do sunbathing while topless. although you can do so if you're in a private pool of an International hotel. Wearing a long-sleeved T-shirt will also protect you from jellyfish stings. Long sleeves t shirts and long pants will also protect you from mosquitoes.
  • Keeping the scorching heat in mind, you should always wear sandals or slippers. If you plan on visiting the countryside you should wear sneakers.You should wear slippers while you're on the beach as there are sharp rocks and sharp shells
  • You should bring Sunscreen with you, it is also advisable that you bring a mosquito repellant cream as well.
  • Sometimes you'll not be provided with toilet papers, so it is safe to bring some with you.

In case you're planning to bring your camera with you there are certain considerations you should be mindful of. First off you should ensure that sand cannot get inside your camera thereby wrecking it. You should also consider bringing an underwater camera with you if you plan on going snorkeling. You could also case your camera in such a way so that water cannot get in and damage your camera. In case the camera you're bringing is a DSLR, you should bring a polarizer with you since the sun can be quite harsh.

Top Delicacies

Omani dates, Omani Halwa and Kawa are some of the food items you have to try while you're in Muscat. Omani cuisine is heavily influenced by Chinese cuisine, Indian Cuisine and Turkish cuisine. You shouldn't expect fresh vegetables while in Muscat, most of the times you'll find frozen vegetables. But the fish will indeed be awesome and fresh. The Omanis have their own version of hummus and bread which you'll surely find to be quite enjoyable. You'll be able to find fruit juice shops very easily. Sometimes they mix it up and serve it with ice. Sodas are also found everywhere. Oman being an Islamic country have several restrictions regarding consumption and sale of alcohol. In order to be able to buy alcohol, you’ll have to obtain a license that'd authorize you to buy alcoholic beverages. To buy alcohol you'll have to visit any international hotel.

Indian Restaurants in Muscat

  • Begum's at Way 3521 and Al Khuwair Street, Muscat 113, Oman. Serves Indian and Asian cuisine. Contact restaurant at +968 9307 2000.
  • Kurkum at Way No. 08, Mutrah, Corniche | Corniche, Muscat 117, Oman. Serves Indian and Asian cuisine. Contact restaurant at +968 24 714114.
  • Mumtaz Mahal Qurum | P.O Box: 1142, Muttrah, Muscat 114, Oman. Serves Indian and Asian cuisine. Contact restaurant at +968 24 605907

Shopping List Essentials

Once you're in Oman, it'd wise to buy Omani Khanjars as Souvenir. Other than that, there are a few shopping locations you must visit while you're in Muscat, these are as follows

  • Mutrah souk or Mutrah marketplace is regarded as one of the best ones in the entire gulf region. You'll also find a fish market there. The souk is a good place to buy jewellery and handicrafts. You can also buy souvenirs or gifts from there. If you want to try some local delicacies, then you should definitely visit the souk.
  • Sabco centre is also a good place to go shopping. It is made up of a number of shopping centres. The handicrafts available at the Mutrah Souk are also available there.
  • At the Oman Avenues Mall, not only will be able to shop, but also, you'll be able to have dinner over there. There's also a place there for your kids to have fun. The Oman Avenues Mall offers a number of entertainment options. This place is very popular with the locals as well as the tourists.
  • No other mall in Oman is as big as the Muscat City Centre. You'll find a lot of shops over there, you must visit it at least once while you're in Oman.
  • The Al Fair is a supermarket chain that sells almost anything that you might require. You'll be able to spot them quite easily

Healthcare Centers

There are a number of healthcare centers in Oman that provide quality healthcare options. I'll list them below for you:

  • Babylon Medical Centre in Amerat.
  • Royal Hospital
  • Badr Al Sama Hospital
  • Atlas Star Medical Centre
  • Al Shatti Hospital
  • Sultan Qaboos University Hospital

Emergency Contact Numbers

  • Omantel Call Centre: 1300
  • Police / Fire / Ambulance: 9999
  • Royal Oman Police: 24560099
  • Royal Oman Police Salalah: 23290099

Currency

The currency of Oman is Omani Rial. The coin denominations are as follows

  • 5 Baisa
  • 10 Baisa
  • 25 Baisa
  • 50 Baisa

Local Do’s and Don’ts

Do’s

  • Do accept refreshments when offered, as it’s considered rude to decline
  • Do respect the faith of those who live in Oman

Don’ts

  • Don’t wear too short or revealing clothes
  • Don't take pictures of women without their consent

Basics of Local Communication:

Being a gulf country, it is obvious that the official as well as the national language of Oman is Arabic. Although in tourist locations as well as in city areas English is spoken and understood. Minority languages are Urdu, Hindi, Swahili etc.

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What kinds of medical coverage’s are provided??

The following medical expenses are covered: 

  • Travel insurance includes medical expenses, repatriation, and emergency medical evacuation. Even dental care expenses such as acute anesthetic treatment of teeth are covered.

What is a deductible?

“Deductible”means a cost-sharing requirement under this policy, that provides that the insurer will not be liable for a specified rupee amount or percentage of claim amount or number of days or number of hours, as specified in the policy schedule and which will apply before any benefits are payable by the insurer. A deductible does not reduce the sum insured and is applicable per event, upto the specified limits mentioned.

What Is Not Covered Under the Travel Insurance Plan?

  • Medical Expenses (inclusive of Repatriation and Emergency Medical Evacuation), Daily Allowance in case of hospitalization, Compassionate Visit benefits, the following will not be payable for Any pre-existing condition, Routine examinations, Expenses for rest or recuperation at spa/ health resort/ sanatorium, Pregnancy (including childbirth, miscarriage, abortion or related complications ) or treatment relating to the removal of physical flaws or anomalies (cosmetic treatment or plastic surgery).
  • Cosmetic surgery, unless such cosmetic surgery is rendered medically necessary as part of treatment for accidents and burns whilst being abroad.
  • Suicide, attempted or wilfully self inflicted injury or illness, mental disorder, anxiety, stress or depression, venereal disease, alcoholism, drunkenness or the abuse of drugs, or any loss arising, directly or indirectly, from any injury, illness, death, loss, expense, or other liability attributable to HIV and/or any HIV related illness including AIDS and/or any mutant derivative or variation thereof however caused.
  • Treatment which could be reasonably delayed until the Insured’s return to India, which will be decided jointly by the treating Physician and the Emergency Assistance Service Provider and shall be in accordance with accepted standards of medical care.
  • The Insured taking part in naval, military or air force operations; war and nuclear perils.
  • Insured engaging in air travel unless he or she flies as a Fare Paying passenger in an aircraft licensed to carry passengers.
  • Participation of the Insured in winter sports, mountaineering and such other professional sports or any other hazardous or potentially dangerous sport for which the Insured members are adequately trained, physically fit and using proper equipment. and that too only if specifically agreed and mentioned in the policy schedule.
  • Hazardous occupation, or if engaged in any criminal or illegal act.
  • Medical Expenses in respect of Experimental, investigational or unproven treatments or treatments which are not consistent with or incidental to the diagnosis and treatment of the positive existence or presence of any Illness for which confinement is required at a Hospital. Any Illness or treatment which is a result or a consequence of undergoing such experimental or unproven treatment.
  • Naturopathy treatment.
  • Non Allopathic treatment e.g. - Ayurvedic, Yogic, Homeopathic, Unani treatment(s).
  • Under no circumstances shall this insurance contract be deemed to provide cover and no liability be incurred to pay any claim or provide any benefit hereunder to the extent that the provision of such cover, payment of such claim or provision of such benefit would expose us to any sanction, prohibition, or restriction under United Nations resolutions or the trade or economic sanctions, laws or regulations of the European Union, United Kingdom, United States of America & India

You can avail the Travel Insurance online and enjoy the benefits offered by Bharti AXA

What Is Covered Under Travel Insurance?

Loss of passport and documents:

Reimbursement of actual expenses incurred in connection with obtaining a duplicate or fresh passport or reasonable cost of replacing/obtaining the stolen documents/ tickets if the passport belonging to the Insured / Insured Person be lost

Home Fire Insurance Contents & Home Burglary Insurance (contents):

Cover against any loss or damage of the Contents at Home of the Insured in India caused by Fire and Allied perils or through burglary and/or housebreaking while the Insured is on a trip abroad.

Hijack Distress Allowance

Payment of distress allowance in case of hijack of a common carrier for more than certain number of hours whilst on the trip. You can easily avail the allowance by filing a claim online through Travel Insurance cover online process.

Medical Expensesinclusive of Repartration  and Emergency Medical Evacuation

If you are sick or injured during the journey, your medical expenses can prove to be costly. In such cases,  Travel Insurance cover greatly helps. The insurance company also offers a cashless settlement with the network hospitals or you can also opt for the reimbursement process within 30 days of hospitalization.

Legal Expenses

Payment of legal costs and expenses incurred by the Insured towards claims from third Parties for compensation in respect of death or disablement arising due to an injury whilst on a trip abroad.

Personal Accident

Payment of compensation if the Insured sustains accidental bodily injury during a trip resulting in death or Permanent Total Disablement or Permanent Partial Disablement within 12 months of occurrence of such injury.

Trip Cancellation/Or Interruption


Payment towards the non-refundable prepaid payments incurred on the trip being cancelled and additional cost of transportation in case of Interruption: due to medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters or other listed reason in policy wordings.


Trip Delay


 Reimbursement of additional expenses if trip is delayed beyond a period, due to airline problems, medical problems, personal employment problems or natural disasters.

 Daily Allowance in case of Hospitalisation

 Payment of daily allowance for the days the Insured is hospitalised beyond a specified number of days, as mentioned in the Policy Schedule, for which a valid claim is admissible under the Policy whilst on a trip abroad.Emergency Accommodation

 Payment of compensation for the additional cost of emergency accommodation if the Insured/ Insured Person could not stay in the accommodation originally booked due to ­fire& flood, earthquake, storm, hurricane, explosion, outbreak of major infectious diseases.

Why do I need Travel insurance?

During a trip there are chances of unfortunate events such as loss of checked in baggage, medical emergency, loss of passport that can spoil your international trip, be it business or leisure. Travel insurance can protect you from such events ensuring that you are left stuck in foreign land.