Wadi Nakhar - the Grand Canyon of Oman

The "Grand Canyon of Oman" is actually the up to 1,000m deep gorge of Wadi Nakhar. The most magnificent views into the imposing gorge are offered by a high plateau at an altitude of 2,000 metres.

The Wadi Nakhar Gorge is also known as the Grand Canyon of Oman and is indeed almost as impressive as its famous namesake, the Grand Canyon in the USA. The spectacular gorge is on our list of the top 10 sights in Oman and can be reached from Nizwa via Al-Hamra. From here, a road branches off towards Ghul.


In Ghul, you should take time for a short stop and have a look at the old, abandoned settlement, which clings to the rock like an eagle's nest. Once past Ghul, the road continues up Jebel Shams - the highest mountain in Oman.

PICTURES: Wadi Nakhar

Photo gallery: Wadi Nakhar (Grand Canyon of Oman)

Viewpoint with a view of the "Grand Canyon of Oman

The summit of Jebel Shams (3,009m above sea level) cannot be climbed. There is a military radar station there, which makes the area a restricted military area. You can drive to the gates of the restricted area, but it is not really worth it.

The most spectacular views of the so-called Grand Canyon of Oman are to be had from a high plateau at an altitude of about 2,000m. From the edge of the plateau you have a fantastic panorama of the 1,000m deep Wadi Nakhar Gorge. With a bit of luck, a vulture will be circling in the air.

To ensure that people who are not afraid of heights can also enjoy this impressive view, there are safety barriers at the edge of the steep slope at a viewpoint. From here you have a magnificent panoramic view of the surrounding mountain landscape and the summit of Djebel Shams with its radar station is also easily visible.

Hiking trail into Wadi Nakhar

At the end of Wadi Nakhar is the starting point for an adventurous hike into the Grand Canyon of Oman - © FRASHO / franks-travelbox
© FRASHO / franks-travelbox

If you continue to the end of the track - a small cluster of houses - you can start an adventurous hike into the canyon from there. The path through the Wadi Nakhar - a former donkey trail - leads about 4 km directly along the western flank of the Grand Canyon, in places directly along the sloping edge. You can't get enough of the fantastic views!

Attention: The trail is not for half-shoe tourists. Good hiking boots, surefootedness and sufficient drinking water are essential requirements for this trail. It takes about 3-4 hours to get there and back.

PICTURES: Hiking at the Wadi Nakhar Gorge

Photo gallery: Hiking at the Wadi Nakhar Gorge


At the end of the path, you come to a now dilapidated settlement, which today serves as an open-air museum. About 15 families lived in the village. It was well protected against enemies and supplied with water.

Before taking the same path back again, you can sit under huge rock overhangs in the cool shade and recover from the exertions of the trail.

View from the path through Wadi Nakhar - a former donkey trail, Oman - © FRASHO, franks-travelbox
© FRASHO, franks-travelbox

The water flowing down from the mountain forms a small lake and the ruins of the houses and remains of the former terraced fields give a good impression of how life used to be here. Anyone who takes this path will come home with an unforgettable impression.