Wadi Al Arbaeen – Oman wadi with pools
Wadi Al Arbaeen also wrote as Wadi Arabiyeen or Wadi Al Arabieen, is one of the favorite places for exploring nature in Oman. Wadi Al Arbaeen is remote and not very easily accessible as a result of lack of sign boards, and the length of off-road that you will need to cover to reach here. However, you should certainly visit if you take pleasure in having a swim in fresh water pools. You can experience the calmness of walking thru a wadi that feels very untouched. You almost get an spooky sensation wading throughout the wadi, particularly further in. You should have at least 3 hours to have a look around of Wadi Al Arbaeen, and much longer if you have plan to explore more!
Wadi Al Arbaeen is situated in the Al Sharqiyah region in Oman, you can combine your travel to to this wadi with an over night camp on the Al Sharqiyah beach and a pay a visit to to the popular Wadi Shab, Fins Beach and Bimmah Sink Hole. A day trip is also good as the drive from Muscat takes just over an hour to reach this wadi.
Before you go:
If you’ve been to any wadi in Oman before, you’ll probably know what to expect here. I found the walk in the wadi to be a bit more challenging due to having to climb rocks and go through a few ponds and shrubs, so keep that in mind when heading out, especially when packing your footwear.
You’ll need the following:
Four Wheel Drive car is a must, you have to go off-road to get there
Food and snacks
Plenty of drinking water
Swimming Clothes and Towel
Slippers or sturdy water-proof footwear.
Water proof bag for your camera and electronic gadgets (or leave them in the car if you do not want them)
How to Get There:
I will try to be as detailed as possible here as I lost my way at the first time and ended up driving off-road for over an hour in quite dangerous roads near cliffs, so try to stick with those and if you find the road too dangerous then you have probably taken a wrong turn somewhere.
On the high-way to Sur, take a right turn where the sign says Wadi Al Arbaeen (or one of the other variations on the name)right after Fins. The sign says 17 km to Wadi Al Arbaeen and will lead you to a straight road, the end of it you will see a turn to the right or left. This is where asphalt road ends and where you may also see some heavy machinery and trucks working in the area.
Take the left turn and continue on the road past the first right turn, then take the next right after it (after about 250m). Keep driving on this road, don’t take the right turn that comes a bit later, you will eventually see a sign that points to Wadi Al Arbaeen to the left. Take left and keep going until you reach a village, by-pass the village and go for another 5 km and you will reach the Wadi, and see this sign:
Then you will be greeted by a water fall and something like this:
The off-road drive is about 12 km. These directions were correct as of our last visit in January 2014.
In Wadi Al Arbaeen:
As you are driving in you will notice another village and palm grooves ahead of you, and probably a few cars and maybe some families having picnic near the water fall there. You may want to spend some time here, but I recommend going deeper in the wadi since it is cleaner and more serene.
Park your car somewhere and get your bag and start your hike. You will see lots of water falls and rocks, which only get more magnificent the further you go in. You will have to go through lots of lakes and rocky areas, so be prepared to swim and climb a bit of rocks, which could be challenging especially if its really hot.
The best stuff about Wadi Al Arbaeen for me (compared to Wadi Shab at least) is that it feels more natural and un-touched, which is mainly because fewer people visit it. So please do not throw any rubbish while you are in the wadi and watch your time.
The easiest way to get to the Wadi is to continue on 17 until you get to Dibab, exit into the village, follow the road until you see the bridge over the wadi and drive up the wadi road. Have done it both ways and the signed one from the highway through the mountains roads has too many unmarked options to be reliable – unless you have it in your GPS already. Only went as far as the village at the end of the road, indeed a lovely spot with some swimming options and a nice waterfall or two.
Have you visited Wadi Al Arbaeen any time before? How long did you go inside exploring?