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Magical Middle East & Muscat Memories Cruise Tour

Magical Middle East & Muscat Memories Cruise Tour

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Description

Spectacular natural scenery, intimate cultural experiences, wild adventures ashore and unforgettable futuristic cities are all on the table during this immersive land and sea journey with extra days inland in Oman. Find the enchanted and remote and wild Musandam Peninsula where vistas of mountains and fjords shake up your assumptions about Middle East landscapes. Be inspired by imaginative modern architecture and the classic beauty of traditional mosques. And learn what life is like here as you enjoy the legendary hospitality of Bedouins, spend a night at an enchanted desert camp, and visit camel markets, souks, pearl farms and oases straight out of the Arabian Nights.

Recommended to bring:
Sunglasses, sunscreen, a hat, and your swimsuit

Please note: Ladies visiting mosques are required to cover their heads with a scarf and not wear shorts, beachwear, or sleeveless outfits as they are to be fully covered. Men are also to be fully covered though short sleeve shirts are allowed. No eatables are allowed inside the mosque premises. Slip-on shoes are recommended.

Trip Name
Magical Middle East & Muscat Memories Cruise Tour
Days
12
Overview
Vessel Type: Small Ship Length: 522 ft (159 meters) Passenger Capacity: 312 Built / Refurbished: 1988 / 2007 Star Breeze, Star Legend & Star Pride are large enough to pamper and entertain you, yet small enough to tuck into delightful tiny harbors and hidden coves that others can’t reach. These all-suite yacht completed renovation as part of the $250 Million Star Plus Initiative to provide more of what our guests love. New public areas, including two new dining venues, a new spa, infinity pool, and fitness area. The yachts also boast all new bathrooms in every suite and a new category of Star suites, featuring a new layout. With ocean views and at least 277 square feet of comfort, Star Breeze, Star Legend & Star Pride are the perfect yachts to watch glaciers and fjords drift by from the serenity of your suite. Carrying only 312 guests, Star Breeze, Star Legend & Star Pride still tuck into small ports like Sanary-sur-Mer and Wrangell or narrow waterways like the Corinth Canal and Keil Canal.

Itinerary



Day 1 - Day 1 Arrive in Muscat
Muscat is scenically wedged between mountains, desert, and the Gulf of Oman, the gateway to the Persian Gulf. Transfer to the Sheraton Oman, with panoramic views of the Al Hajar mountain range and city, or the clifftop Crowne Plaza Muscat, with breathtaking views of the Gulf. Enjoy dinner at the hotel before retiring. (Includes transfer from the airport, overnight at Muscat Hotel and dinner.)
Day 2 - Day 2 Muscat, Jebel Akhdar
Muscat’s Grand Mosque is a perfect blend of modern design and traditional craftsmanship. Admire the handmade carpets, elegant chandeliers, and the ceiling of the great dome in the main prayer room. At the National Museum, browse thousands of artifacts showcasing Oman’s history and culture. Take a few photos of Al Alam Palace on your way to Jebel Akhdar Hotel. (Includes breakfast, overnight at Jebel Akhdar hotel, lunch and dinner.)
Day 3 - Day 3 Nizwa Fort & Souq and Wahiba
Following breakfast at the hotel the first stop this morning is the Nizwa Fort, built in the 1650s. The fort and nearby Nizwa Souq give you a glimpse of old Oman. During a brief break at Birkat Al Mauz, walk through a classic oasis with date trees. Then it’s on to Wahiba with its incredible sand dunes up to 300 feet high. If you’re feeling adventurous, ride over the dunes with an experienced driver. Visit a local Bedouin house before arriving at Desert Camp in time for a spectacular desert sunset and dune driving before dinner. (Includes breakfast, overnight at Wahiba Sands, with dinner.)
Day 4 - Day 4 Sur, Muscat, Transfer to Yacht
Our route to Sur takes us through Wadi Bani Khalid, a beautiful oasis with spring-fed lagoons, pools, and waterfalls. Sur played a pivotal role in Oman’s maritime past and still produces traditional wooden vessels known as dhows. Stop by a dhow factory to see how these historic ships are made. Continue on to the Bimah Sinkhole with its incredible turquoise color. In Muscat, drive along the waterfront corniche to Mutrah Souq to one of the oldest markets in Oman before arriving at your ship. (Includes breakfast, lunch and transfer to yacht.)In a land steeped with history, Muscat, Oman’s port capital, is a mix of upscale shopping malls, modern high-rises and 16th century Al Jalali and Mirani, Portuguese forts. The city has numerous mosques including modern, marble-clad Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, with its 164 foot (50m) dome and prodigious Persian carpet, and that can accommodate 20,000 people. Wander the lively fish market and busy Mutrah Souk. There are plenty of soft sand beaches leading to pristine Gulf of Oman water full of fish and turtles.
Day 5 - Day 5 Fujairah, UAE
Fujairah is known for sparkling, uncrowded beaches, considered one of the best places for SCUBA diving. The nearby Hajar Mountains Wadis offer scenic hiking. Sites to see include the Al-Bidyah Mosque, Fujairah Fort, Bithnah Fort and Sheikh Zayed Mosque. Please note: Wear flat, closed-toe shoes and sunscreen and bring a shawl, cardigan or light jacket to cover up due to differences in temperature/ climate, and local currency. Guests are required to bring the original passport for this tour as it crosses the border between UAE and Oman, which will require some time.
Day 6 - Day 6 Khasab
Known as the Norway of Arabia with its spectacular fjords, Khasab sits isolated on Oman’s northern coast. Exploring the impressive coast by boat may result in encounters with friendly bottlenose and humpback dolphins. Check out Khasab Castle, built in the 17th century with its museum of local life back through the ages. Not far away are Bedouin villages and the Khawr Najd viewpoint with sweeping views of the impressive fjords.
Day 7 - Days 7 - 8 Abu Dhabi, UAE
The capital of the United Arab Emirates sits off the mainland on an island in the Persian Gulf and connects to the mainland by a short bridge. It is one of the nation’s two most prosperous emirates because of its rich oil fields, both onshore and in the Persian Gulf discovered in 1958, and one of the world’s highest per capita incomes. Among the many sites to see are Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center, Louvre Abu Dhabi Art Museum, Emirates Palace, The Corniche and Yaz Mall.
Day 8 - Days 9 - 10 Doha, Qatar
The sparkling city of Doha boasts gleaming skyscrapers and mosques with intricate carvings, extravagant shopping malls and a 4-mile Corniche. Lose yourself in narrow alleyways of the oldest souk in Qatar amidst the raucous noise of bartering. Find the Museum of Islamic Art, resembling a giant sandcastle and appreciate the beauty of the sea and coastline.
Day 9 - Day 11 Sir Bani Yas, UAE
Sir Bani Yas Island is famous for its ancient archaeological sites, geological features and man-made attractions, dominated by the Arabian Wildlife Park, a savannah-like reserve for over 16,000 animals including roaming giraffes, cheetahs and gazelles. See flocks of flamingos on the white-sand beaches and the ruins of an ancient Christian monastery. They operate the region’s first wind turbine and work to protect their delicate ecosystem.
Day 10 - Day 12 Dubai, UAE
In Dubai, sports run the gamut from camel races in the desert to an indoor ski mountain. Architecture spans Bedouin tents and Arabian wind towers to the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa. Archipelagos miraculously appear in the image of palm trees and planets. It’s a lot to take in. By all means, add some extra days here to get your head around this amazing city that seems to be all things to all people.
Day 11 - Please Note:
Itineraries are subject to change.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type

Inclusions

    • 3 hotel nights: 1 night at Muscat hotel, 1 night at Jebel Akhdar hotel, 1 night at Wahiba Sands or similar
    • Entrance fees and guided tours to Muscat Grand Mosque, National Museum, Sur Dhow Factory
    • 9 meals
    • Local lunch in Nizwa, Sur, and Muscat, local dinner at desert camp, 3 breakfasts and 2 dinners at hotel
    • All transfers from airport to hotel, to and from sites and to the yacht
    • English-speaking Guide
    • All current applicable taxes and VAT
    • 8-day cruise aboard Star Legend between Muscat and Dubai

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