Caracal in Oman by Lars Petersson

Tour 1: Thursday 7th – Friday 15th November 2024 FULL
Tour 2:
Friday 15th – Saturday 23rd November 2024 FULL
Tour Dates: Saturday 15th – Sunday 23rd November 2025  (Salalah to Salalah)
Tour Price: £2,750pp plus flight
Estimated Flight Price: London to Salalah approx. £700 return
Deposit: £500 per person
Conservation Donation from Wise Birding: £100 – £150
Minimum Number: 6 people
Maximum Group Size: 6 people

Target Mammals:
Caracal, African Wildcat, Wolf, Striped Hyena, Honey Badger, Blanford’s Fox, Indian Crested Porcupine, Common Rock Hyrax, White-tailed Mongoose, Arabian Gazelle, Sperm Whale, Spinner Dolphin, Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphin and more!

Target Birds:
Crab Plover, Masked Booby, Jouanin’s Petrel, Persian Shearwater. Plus many other waders and passerines.

Tour Summary
This new one base holiday in Oman is very much focused on mammals, both terrestrial and marine, and we will spend much of our time out very early morning and late evening to maximise our chances of success in seeing the tougher mammals. Oman has recently been put on the mammal watching map due to its surprisingly high abundance of mammals, including exciting species such as Striped Hyena and Caracal.
During our visit to Oman we will visit a number of nearby sites looking for all wildlife and then focus  just on mammals during the pre-dawn and dusk hours. We will also take a boat trip to look for cetaceans and some seabirds. 

ACCOMMODATION: 8 nights in Oman
Medium quality hotels
Meals: Full board

DAY 1: Arrival Salalah
On arrival into Salalah we transfer straight to our accommodation and have lunch. Once settled in to our new base we will then head out to a nearby site where we will look in particular for Arabian Gazelle and Rock Hyrax. Later in the evening we will try our first attempt for some of the more nocturnal species. Overnight Mirbat

Honey Badger in Oman by Alimhd

 DAYS 2 – 8: Mirbat and surrounding area
Mirbat is a coastal fishing town in southwestern Oman approximately 75Km east of Salalah and is perfectly placed to look for an exciting selection of both terrestrial and marine mammals.
During the next seven days we will be explore the numerous open plains, dry wadis, rocky gorges and coastline for the seemingly abundant population of mammals that, with perseverance, can be found around the Mirbat area. The beauty of this tour is most of the sites that we visit are within just an hour of our base, so we have plenty of time to explore the area and rest during the day after late evenings looking for the tougher mammals. During the day we will visit some of the coastal lagoons for birds and open plains for ungulates before focusing again purely on mammals during the nocturnal hours.
Highly sought after species that we will be trying hard to find include both the Caracal and Striped Hyena. These two species have been recorded regularly around the sites that we visit and our local guide’s knowledge of the area will be the key to our success. Aside from these two species, we will of course be searching for other exciting mammals like the Arabian Wolf and Honey Badger, both which tend to prefer the open ground and wadis in contrast to the specialist of the rocky slopes and a species that will also be high on our target list, the Blanford’s Fox.

Sperm Whale and Common Dolphin by Lars Petersson

One day we will take a boat trip to look for cetaceans and seabirds. The coast here can be very productive for whales and dolphins and we hope to find Sperm Whale and Spinner Dolphins as well as other scarcer species like False Killer Whale. Not all our cetacean watching will be done from a boat as watching from the nearby cliffs along the coast can produce sightings of more coastal species like the  Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphin. Finally, although our key focus will be on mammals, we will of course see a great selection of birds both when at sea and exploring the coastal bays. Species such as the rare Jouanin’s Petrel at sea and the impressive Crab Plover in the coastal bays will both be birds that we will take a special effort to try and find. Overall, this is a great one base holiday in a great country with a pleasant climate, good food and accommodation and a huge number of exciting mammals and birds to look for! Overnight Mirbat Hotel

Blanford’s Fox in Oman by Lars Petersson

DAY 9: Transfer to Salalah Airport
After breakfast we will take the very short transfer of around just 1 hour to Salalah airport where the tour concludes.

Please note this is a flexible itinerary which may need to be adjusted slightly dependent on arrival / departure times, weather conditions and the most recent information from our local guides

Leaders: Wise Birding leader and local guides
Included in cost: Accommodation in twin en-suite rooms, all meals, water, tea & coffee, boat trip from Mirbat, ground transport & services of leaders.
Not included in cost: International airfare, travel insurance, Visa and any alcoholic drinks (rarely available in Oman).
Single Supplement: £250
Transport: A mix of 15 seater bus and 4×4 vehicles on some days.
Difficulty: EASY Most of our wildlife watching will be done from the vehicle or short walks from the vehicles.
Climate: Can be very warm, generally late 20s or early 30s, humid on the coast (Salalah area). Cooler in the mountains but still in the 20s, warm at night
Tour Start Point: Salalah, Airport, Oman
Tour End Point: Salalah, Airport, Oman
Suggested Airlines: Oman Air

Masked Booby in Oman by Lars Petersson