We have had lots of you asking about our Sand and Rocks tour, here are answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.
I have never driven offroad before, is this trip suitable for me?
Rookies are most welcome on this trip; Marina and Neil have over 7 years coaching drivers taking their first “steps” on the sand. At the start of the trip we do a safety briefing with some basic instructions; then when on the trip, we will stop and teach you how to tackle each new obstacle. Your safety is our top priority!
I have never been to Oman before, does it take long to cross the border?
As this weekend is not a public holiday you can expect 10-15 minutes to exit the UAE and about the same to enter Oman. We will send a step by step guide to our guests to make the process as easy as possible for them.
How much will it cost me to cross the border?
There is a charge of 35aed for leaving the UAE for all, and for UAE residents who have an approved profession (and their dependents) the charge is 5 OMR (about 48aed). Full details here
Where will we meet you?
The meeting point is at the Al Maha Petrol Station just 5 minutes’ drive from the border and we will meet you there at 7, 8 and 9pm.
I won’t reach the border til 8pm and it will be dark then, is it safe to drive in?
After we meet It will take us around 10 minutes to convoy you down to the entry point off the road, and from there we will take a well-defined track for around 8kms into the desert. Our campsite will be on the edge of a dune area, with a backdrop of Jebel Hafeet. It will have mobile signal and those with Oman data plans, or roaming with UAE telecom providers should receive reasonable internet signal.
What is there to see on this trip?
On Friday morning se will drive on the most beautiful red “starfish” dunes which are far more majestic than those outside Dubai or Abu Dhabi. We have just done a reconnaissance trip in this area and our photographer friends found plenty to snap; spectacular sunrises, tree silhouettes, camels, and of course, awesome sand dunes.
In the afternoon we will relocate to a wadi between Dank and Yanquil, making stops to look at some rock formations and also a walk through a large oasis with many crops growing.
On Saturday morning guests can explore the wadi with its many trees and water-sculpted rocks, before we head to the beautiful Bait Al Murar Fort; tucked out of sight and definitely not on the standard tourist trail it is a most interesting place to spend an hour or two.
This itinerary will give new visitors to Oman a small taste of what it has to offer – picturesque deserts, spectacular mountains and wonderful wadis.
Is this trip suitable for children?
Most definitely yes! There is not too much driving – the dune drive should be 2.5-3 hours including stops – and the finish point is about 60-90 minutes from the UAE border post. There will be a few stops which will let restless kids stretch their legs.
We ask two things – they should wear their seatbelts in the car whenever it is moving (or in an approved car seat/booster for pre-schoolers – and should also wear closed in shoes at the campfire as there are some small creatures which could bite or sting bare feet!
Will there be many cars there?
We always limit the number of guest cars to 8 per offroad convoy and maximum 2 convoys; we expect a group of 10-20 people on this trip.
Do I need a 4×4?
You will need a 4WD / AWD / 4×4 to access the campsite. A 4×4 is required for the dune drive on Friday morning, but if you have an AWD then you can just chill out at our camp until Marina returns with the group. The wadi is accessible in a 4WD/ AWD so 4×4 not essential.
Do I need recovery equipment?
We carry a wide array of recovery gear so there is no need for our guests to go out and buy their own. That being said, if you have a shovel and/or compressor, please take them!
Do I need a tent and equipment?
You are welcome to take your own but if you don’t have then it is possible to hire them from us. We offer tent/mattress/camping chair hire for 75aed per person, and bedding (sheet, pillow, blanket) for 60aed per person.
I am a vegetarian, will there be food for me?
We cater for carnivores, vegetarians, vegans and also gluten-free diets so there should be plenty of suitable food. We do not offer a separate menu for kids so if your child has special dietary needs you may wish to take their food along with you.
How can I pay?
You can pay in AED or OMR by bank transfer, or if you prefer, pay by credit card in AED. (9.54AED = 1 OMR)
How do I book for the trip?
Please download the registration form, complete it, take a picture of it and email us that photo. We will send details of how to pay by return.
Registration form can be downloaded here
Full details of our itinerary can be found here
Hope to see you there!