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Visa required [43]. Visa on arrival [44]. Republic of the Congo. Visa required [45]. Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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Visa on arrival is available at international airports Luangphabang , Pakse , Savannakhet and Vientiane , and at 4 land borders Friendship Bridge, [Note 3] and at 13 border crossings [Note 4] as well as Tanalaeng train station in Vientiane, which connects to the train station in Nongkai, Thailand.

Visa on arrival is extendable up to 60 days. Visa on arrival []. Marshall Islands. Available at Nouakchott—Oumtounsy International Airport.

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Papua New Guinea. Saint Kitts and Nevis. Saint Lucia. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Entry Permit on arrival []. San Marino.

Saudi Arabia. Visitor's Permit on arrival []. Sierra Leone. Solomon Islands. South Africa. South Sudan. Electronic Visa []. Obtainable online [] Printed visa authorization must be presented at the time of travel [].

Sri Lanka. According to the Law No. At Dushanbe International Airport. Visa also available online. Mujjaah later moved towards the coast where he confronted Suleiman bin Abbad.

The battle was won by Suleiman's forces. Alhajjaj, however, sent another force under Abdulrahman bin Suleiman and eventually won the war and took over the governance of Oman.

During the 11th and 12th centuries, Oman was controlled by the Seljuk Empire. They were expelled in , when the Nabhani dynasty came to power.

The capital of the dynasty was Bahla. A decade after Vasco da Gama 's successful voyage around the Cape of Good Hope and to India in —98, the Portuguese arrived in Oman and occupied Muscat for a year period, from to In need of an outpost to protect their sea lanes, the Portuguese built up and fortified the city, where remnants of their colonial architectural style still exist.

It was part of a web of fortress that the Portuguese had in the region , from Basra to Hormuz.

The Ottoman Turks temporarily captured Muscat from the Portuguese in and held it until During the 17th century, the Omanis were reunited by the Yaruba Imams.

Nasir bin Murshid became the first Yaarubah Imam in , when he was elected in Rustak. Nasir's energy and perseverance is believed to have earned him the election.

A major obstacle to his progress was Fort Jesus , housing the garrison of a Portuguese settlement at Mombasa.

After a two-year siege, the fort fell to Saif bin Sultan in Thereafter the Omanis easily ejected the Portuguese from other African coastal regions including Kilwa and Pemba.

Saif bin Sultan occupied Bahrain in Qeshm was captured in A Persian force arrived in March to aid Saif. From their base at Julfar, the Persian forces eventually rebelled against the Yaruba in The Persian empire then colonised Oman for a short period until After the decolonization of Oman from the Persians, Ahmed bin Sa'id Albusaidi in became the elected Imam of Oman, with Rustaq serving as the capital.

Since the Yaruba dynasty, the Omanis kept the elective system but, provided that the person is deemed qualified, gave preference to a member of the ruling family.

His son, Seyyid Hamed bin Said, overthrew the representative of the Imam in Muscat and obtained the possession of Muscat fortress. Hamed ruled as "Seyyid".

Seyyid Said bin Sultan succeeded Sultan bin Ahmed. His rule started in However, the British refused to accept Imam Azzan as a ruler.

The refusal played an instrumental role in deposing Imam Azzan in by a sultan who Britain deemed to be more acceptable. Oman's Imam Sultan, defeated ruler of Muscat, was granted sovereignty over Gwadar , an area of modern-day Pakistan.

This coastal city is located in the Makran region of what is now the far southwestern corner of Pakistan, near the present-day border of Iran , at the mouth of the Gulf of Oman.

The British empire was keen to dominate southeast Arabia to stifle the growing power of other European states and to curb the Omani maritime power that grew during the 17th century.

The treaty was to block commercial competition of the French and the Dutch as well as obtain a concession to build a British factory at Bandar Abbas.

In , a deed of cession of the Omani Kuria Muria islands to Britain was signed by the sultan of Muscat and the British government.

Zanzibar was a valuable property as the main slave market of the Swahili Coast, and became an increasingly important part of the Omani empire, a fact reflected by the decision of the 19th century sultan of Muscat, Sa'id ibn Sultan , to make it his main place of residence in Sa'id built impressive palaces and gardens in Zanzibar.

Rivalry between his two sons was resolved, with the help of forceful British diplomacy, when one of them, Majid , succeeded to Zanzibar and to the many regions claimed by the family on the Swahili Coast.

The other son, Thuwaini , inherited Muscat and Oman. Zanzibar influences in the Comoros archipelago in the Indian Ocean indirectly introduced Omani customs to the Comorian culture.

These influences include clothing traditions and wedding ceremonies. The Al Hajar Mountains , of which the Jebel Akhdar is a part, separate the country into two distinct regions: the interior, known as Oman, and the coastal area dominated by the capital, Muscat.

The treaty was brokered by Britain, which had no economic interest in the interior of Oman during that point of time.

The treaty granted autonomous rule to the Imamate in the interior of Oman and recognized the sovereignty of the coast of Oman, the Sultanate of Muscat.

On 10 January , an agreement between the Sultanate and the British government was signed in which the Sultanate had to consult with the British political agent residing in Muscat and obtain the approval of the High Government of India to extract oil in the Sultanate.

The agreement stipulated that none of the signatories was allowed to pursue the establishment of oil concessions within the agreed on area without including all other stakeholders.

Said bin Taimur became the sultan of Muscat officially on 10 February The rule of sultan Said bin Taimur , who was backed by the British government, was characterized as being feudal , reactionary and isolationist.

After failing to discover oil in the Sultanate, IPC was intensely interested in some promising geological formations near Fahud , an area located within the Imamate.

IPC offered financial support to the sultan to raise an armed force against any potential resistance by the Imamate. In , the exclave coastal Makran strip acceded to Pakistan and was made a district of its Balochistan province , while Gwadar remained in Oman.

Sultan Said bin Taimur expressed his interest to the British government in occupying the Imamate right after the death of Imam Alkhalili and take advantage of potential instability that may occur within the Imamate when elections were due.

Under the terms of the treaty of Seeb, the Sultan, backed by the British government, claimed all dealings with the oil company as his prerogative.

The Imam, on the other hand, claimed that since the oil was in the Imamate territory, anything concerning it was an internal matter. In July , the Sultan's forces were withdrawing, but they were repeatedly ambushed, sustaining heavy casualties.

Colonel David Smiley , who had been seconded to organise the Sultan's Armed Forces, managed to isolate the mountain in autumn and found a route to the plateau from Wadi Bani Kharus.

Oil reserves in Dhofar were discovered in and extraction began in In the Dhofar Rebellion , which began in , pro-Soviet forces were pitted against government troops.

As the rebellion threatened the Sultan's control of Dhofar, Sultan Said bin Taimur was deposed in a bloodless coup by his son Qaboos bin Said , who expanded the Sultan of Oman's Armed Forces , modernised the state's administration and introduced social reforms.

After deposing his father in , Sultan Qaboos opened up the country, embarked on economic reforms, and followed a policy of modernisation marked by increased spending on health, education and welfare.

In , Oman became a founding member of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council. Political reforms were eventually introduced. Historically, voters had been chosen from among tribal leaders, intellectuals and businessmen.

In , Sultan Qaboos decreed that women could vote for, and stand for election to, the Majlis al-Shura, the Consultative Assembly of Oman.

Two women were duly elected to the body. In , voting rights were extended to all citizens over the age of 21, and the first elections to the Consultative Assembly under the new rules were held in She was appointed to the post of National Authority for Industrial Craftsmanship, an office that attempts to preserve and promote Oman's traditional crafts and stimulate industry.

The Sultan continued to rule by decree. Nearly suspected Islamists were arrested in and 31 people were convicted of trying to overthrow the government.

They were ultimately pardoned in June of the same year. Inspired by the Arab Spring uprisings that were taking place throughout the region, protests occurred in Oman during the early months of While they did not call for the ousting of the regime, demonstrators demanded political reforms, improved living conditions and the creation of more jobs.

They were dispersed by riot police in February Sultan Qaboos reacted by promising jobs and benefits. In October , elections were held to the Consultative Assembly, to which Sultan Qaboos promised greater powers.

The following year, the government began a crackdown on internet criticism. In September , trials began of 'activists' accused of posting "abusive and provocative" criticism of the government online.

Qaboos died on 10 January , and the government declared three days of national mourning. He was buried the next day. A vast gravel desert plain covers most of central Oman, with mountain ranges along the north Al Hajar Mountains and southeast coast Qara or Dhofar Mountains , [] [] where the country's main cities are located: the capital city Muscat , Sohar and Sur in the north, and Salalah in the south.

Oman's climate is hot and dry in the interior and humid along the coast. During past epochs, Oman was covered by ocean, as evidenced by the large numbers of fossilized shells found in areas of the desert away from the modern coastline.

The peninsula of Musandam Musandem exclave , which is strategically located on the Strait of Hormuz , is separated from the rest of Oman by the United Arab Emirates.

The central desert of Oman is an important source of meteorites for scientific analysis. In the south, the Dhofar Mountains area near Salalah has a tropical-like climate and receives seasonal rainfall from late June to late September as a result of monsoon winds from the Indian Ocean, leaving the summer air saturated with cool moisture and heavy fog.

On 26 June the city of Qurayyat set the record for highest minimum temperature in a hour period, Desert shrub and desert grass, common to southern Arabia, are found in Oman, but vegetation is sparse in the interior plateau, which is largely gravel desert.

The greater monsoon rainfall in Dhofar and the mountains makes the growth there more luxuriant during summer; coconut palms grow plentifully on the coastal plains of Dhofar and frankincense is produced in the hills, with abundant oleander and varieties of acacia.

The Al Hajar Mountains are a distinct ecoregion , the highest points in eastern Arabia with wildlife including the Arabian tahr.

Indigenous mammals include the leopard , hyena , fox, wolf , hare, oryx and ibex. Birds include the vulture, eagle, stork, bustard, Arabian partridge, bee eater, falcon and sunbird.

In , Oman had nine endangered species of mammals, five endangered types of birds, [ citation needed ] and nineteen threatened plant species.

Decrees have been passed to protect endangered species, including the Arabian leopard , Arabian oryx , mountain gazelle , goitered gazelle , Arabian tahr , green sea turtle , hawksbill turtle and olive ridley turtle.

In recent years, Oman has become one of the newer hot spots for whale watching , highlighting the critically endangered Arabian humpback whale , the most isolated and only non- migratory population in the world, sperm whales and pygmy blue whales.

Drought and limited rainfall contribute to shortages in the nation's water supply. Maintaining an adequate supply of water for agricultural and domestic use is one of Oman's most pressing environmental problems, with limited renewable water resources.

In terms of climate action, major challenges remain to be solved, per the United Nations Sustainable Development index. Drinking water is available throughout Oman, either piped or delivered.

The soil in coastal plains, such as Salalah, have shown increased levels of salinity, due to over exploitation of ground water and encroachment by seawater on the water table.

Pollution of beaches and other coastal areas by oil tanker traffic through the Strait of Hormuz and Gulf of Oman is also a persistent concern.

Local and national entities have noted unethical treatment of animals in Oman. In particular, stray dogs and to a lesser extent, stray cats are often the victims of torture, abuse or neglect.

The Oman government has refused to implement a spay and neuter programme or create any animal shelters in the country. Cats, while seen as more acceptable than dogs, are viewed as pests and frequently die of starvation or illness.

The country ranked th in Asia among the list of highest polluted countries. Oman is a unitary state and an absolute monarchy , [] in which all legislative, executive and judiciary power ultimately rests in the hands of the hereditary Sultan.

Consequently, Freedom House has routinely rated the country "Not Free". The sultan is the head of state and directly controls the foreign affairs and defence portfolios.

Oman is an absolute monarchy , with the Sultan's word having the force of law. The judiciary branch is subordinate to the Sultan. According to Oman's constitution, Sharia law is one of the sources of legislation.

Sharia court departments within the civil court system are responsible for family-law matters, such as divorce and inheritance.

Oman does not have separation of powers. The administration of justice is highly personalized, with limited due process protections, especially in political and security-related cases.

The Basic Statute was issued in and thus far has only been amended once, in , [] in response to protests. Though Oman's legal code theoretically protects civil liberties and personal freedoms, both are regularly ignored by the regime.

Homosexual acts are illegal in Oman. The Omani government decides who can or cannot be a journalist and this permission can be withdrawn at any time.

The law prohibits criticism of the Sultan and government in any form or medium. Merely mentioning the existence of such restrictions can land Omanis in trouble.

Faced with so many restrictions, Omanis have resorted to unconventional methods for expressing their views. There is no way in which police can maintain dignity in seizing and destroying a donkey on whose flank a political message has been inscribed.

Omani citizens need government permission to marry foreigners. In August , The Omani writer and human rights defender Mohammed Alfazari , the founder and editor-in-chief of the e-magazine Mowatin "Citizen", disappeared after going to the police station in the Al-Qurum district of Muscat.

The National Human Rights Commission, established in , is not independent from the regime. Since the beginning of the "Omani Spring" in January , a number of serious violations of civil rights have been reported, amounting to a critical deterioration of the human rights situation.

There have been numerous testimonies of torture and other inhumane forms of punishment perpetrated by security forces on protesters and detainees. In January , Omani intelligence agents arrested a Bahraini actor and handed him over to the Bahraini authorities on the same day of his arrest.

His whereabouts and condition remain unknown. The plight of domestic workers in Oman is a taboo subject. Since , Oman has pursued a moderate foreign policy, and has expanded its diplomatic relations dramatically.

Oman is among the very few Arab countries that have maintained friendly ties with Iran. Oman's military manpower totalled 44, in , including 25, men in the army, 4, sailors in the navy, and an air force with 4, personnel.

The Royal Household maintained 5, Guards, 1, in Special Forces, sailors in the Royal Yacht fleet, and pilots and ground personnel in the Royal Flight squadrons.

Oman also maintains a modestly sized paramilitary force of 4, men. The Royal Army of Oman had 25, active personnel in , plus a small contingent of Royal Household troops.

Despite a comparative large military spending, it has been relatively slow to modernise its forces. Oman has a relatively limited number of tanks, including 6 M60A1 , 73 M60A3 and 38 Challenger 2 main battle tanks, as well as 37 aging Scorpion light tanks.

The Royal Air Force of Oman has approximately 4, men, with only 36 combat aircraft and no armed helicopters. Combat aircraft include 20 aging Jaguars , 12 Hawk Mk s, 4 Hawk Mk s and 12 PC-9 turboprop trainers with a limited combat capability.

The Royal Navy of Oman had 4, men in , and is headquartered at Seeb. In , Oman had 10 surface combat vessels. These included two 1,ton Qahir class corvettes , and 8 ocean-going patrol boats.

Oman also had at least four landing craft. They were built at Portsmouth. The Sultanate is administratively divided into eleven governorates.

Governorates are, in turn, divided into 60 wilayats. Oman's Basic Statute of the State expresses in Article 11 that the "national economy is based on justice and the principles of a free economy.

In terms of monetary value, mineral fuels accounted for Oman's socio-economic structure is described as being hyper-centralized rentier welfare state.

Half of the private sector jobs are classified as elementary. One third of employed Omanis are in the private sector, while the remaining majority are in the public sector.

Since a slump in oil prices in , Oman has made active plans to diversify its economy and is placing a greater emphasis on other areas of industry, namely tourism and infrastructure.

Oman had a Vision to diversify the economy established in , which targeted a decrease in oil's share to less than 10 percent of GDP by , but it was rendered obsolete in Oman then established Vision.

A free-trade agreement with the United States took effect 1 January , eliminated tariff barriers on all consumer and industrial products, and also provided strong protections for foreign businesses investing in Oman.

During this latter event the mountains surrounding Salalah are popular with tourists as a result of the cool weather and lush greenery, rarely found anywhere else in Oman.

Salaries for overseas workers are known to be less than for Omani nationals, though still from two to five times higher than for the equivalent job in India.

Oman, in had a budget deficit of 32 percent of total revenue and a government debt to GDP of Oman's proved reserves of petroleum total about 5.

In , oil and gas represented 71 percent of the government's revenues. Oil and gas sector represented This 16th iteration of the event will be held between 24 and 26 February , in collaboration with Oman LNG , under the auspices of the Ministry of Oil and Gas.

Tourism in Oman has grown considerably recently, and it is expected to be one of the largest industries in the country.

Tourism contributed 2. Citizens of the Gulf Cooperation Council GCC , including Omanis who are residing outside of Oman, represent the highest ratio of all tourists visiting Oman, estimated to be 48 percent.

The second highest number of visitors come from other Asian countries, who account for 17 percent of the total number of visitors.

Another key issue to the tourism sector is deepening the understanding of the ecosystem and biodiversity in Oman to guarantee their protection and preservation.

Oman has one of the most diverse environments in the Middle East with various tourist attractions and is particularly well known for adventure and cultural tourism.

In November , Oman made the rule of visa on arrival an exception and introduced the concept of e-visa for tourists from all nationalities.

Under the new laws, visitors were required to apply for the visa in advance by visiting Oman's online government portal.

In industry, innovation and infrastructure, Oman is still faced with "significant challenges", as per United Nations Sustainable Development Goals index, as of Oman has scored high on the rates of internet use, mobile broadband subscriptions, logistics performance and on the average of top 3 university rankings.

Oman is refurbishing and expanding the ports infrastructure in Muscat, Duqm, Sohar and Salalah to expand tourism, local production and export shares.

Oman is also expanding its downstream operations by constructing a refinery and petrochemical plant in Duqm with a , barrels per day capacity projected for completion by The industrial activity is mainly focused on mining-and-services, petrochemicals and construction materials.

Construction accounts for nearly 48 percent of the total labour force, followed by wholesale-and-retail, which accounts for around 15 percent of total employment and manufacturing, which accounts for around 12 percent of employment in the private sector.

The percentage of Omanis employed in the construction and manufacturing sectors is nevertheless low, as of statistics.

Oman, as per Global Innovation Index report, scores "below expectations" in innovation relative to countries classified under high income.

Another challenge to innovation is the dutch disease phenomenon, which creates an oil and gas investment lock-in, while relying heavily on imported products and services in other sectors.

Such a locked-in system hinders local business growth and global competitiveness in other sectors, and thus impedes economic diversification.

Oman's fishing industry contributed 0. The other main importers are Saudi Arabia, Brazil and China. Oman's consumption of fish is almost two times the world's average.

The ratio of exported fish to total fish captured in tons fluctuated between 49 and 61 percent between and Oman, on the other hand, lacks sufficient infrastructure, research and development, quality and safety monitoring, together with a limited contribution by the fishing industry to GDP.

Dates represent 80 percent of all fruit crop production. Further, date farms employ 50 percent of the total agricultural area in the country. Oman's estimated production of dates in is , tons, making it the 9th largest producer of dates.

The vast majority of date production 75 percent comes from only 10 cultivars. The main importer is India around 60 percent of all imports.

Oman's date exports remained steady between and Oman is considered to have good infrastructure for date production and support provision to cultivation and marketing, but lacks innovation in farming and cultivation, industrial coordination in the supply chain and encounter high losses of unused dates.

As of [update] , Oman's population is over 4 million, with 2. Nearly 50 percent of the population lives in Muscat and the Batinah coastal plain northwest of the capital.

Omani people are predominantly of Arab , Baluchi and African origins. Omani society is largely tribal [] [] [] and encompasses three major identities: [] that of the tribe, the Ibadi faith and maritime trade.

Religion in Oman []. Even though the Oman government does not keep statistics on religious affiliation, statistics from the US's Central Intelligence Agency state that adherents of Islam are in the majority at Christian communities are centred in the major urban areas of Muscat , Sohar and Salalah.

These include Catholic , Eastern Orthodox and various Protestant congregations, organising along linguistic and ethnic lines. More than 50 different Christian groups, fellowships and assemblies are active in the Muscat metropolitan area, formed by migrant workers from Southeast Asia.

There are also communities of ethnic Indian Hindus and Christians. There is also a small Sikh community in Oman.

Arabic is the official language of Oman. It belongs to the Semitic branch of the Afroasiatic family. Almost all signs and writings appear in both Arabic and English at tourist sites.

It is also used by some descendants of Sindhi sailors. Additionally, Swahili is widely spoken in the country due to the historical relations between Oman and Zanzibar.

Prior to Islam, Central Oman lay outside of the core area of spoken Arabic. But until the 18th or 19th century it was spoken further north, perhaps into Central Oman.

Oman was also the first Arab country in the Persian Gulf to have German taught as a second language. Outwardly, Oman shares many of the cultural characteristics of its Arab neighbours, particularly those in the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Oman has a long tradition of shipbuilding, as maritime travel played a major role in the Omanis' ability to stay in contact with the civilisations of the ancient world.

Sur was one of the most famous shipbuilding cities of the Indian Ocean. The Al Ghanja ship takes one whole year to build.

In March archaeologists working off Al Hallaniyah Island identified a shipwreck believed to be that of the Esmeralda from Vasco da Gama 's — fleet.

The wreck was initially discovered in Later underwater excavations took place between and through a partnership between the Oman Ministry of Heritage and Culture and Blue Water Recoveries Ltd.

The male national dress in Oman consists of the dishdasha , a simple, ankle-length, collarless gown with long sleeves. Its main adornment, a tassel furakha sewn into the neckline, can be impregnated with perfume.

The most noted regional differences in dishdasha designs are the style with which they are embroidered, which varies according to age group.

The embroidery edging the cloak is often in silver or gold thread and it is intricate in detail.

Some men carry the assa , a stick, which can have practical uses or is simply used as an accessory during formal events. Omani men, on the whole, wear sandals on their feet.

The khanjar dagger forms part of the national dress and men wear the khanjar on all formal public occasions and festivals. Sheaths may vary from simple covers to ornate silver or gold-decorated pieces.

A depiction of a khanjar appears on the national flag. Omani women wear eye-catching national costumes, with distinctive regional variations.

All costumes incorporate vivid colours and vibrant embroidery and decorations. In the past, the choice of colours reflected a tribe's tradition.

The Omani women's traditional costume comprises several garments: the kandoorah , which is a long tunic whose sleeves or radoon are adorned with hand-stitched embroidery of various designs.

The dishdasha is worn over a pair of loose fitting trousers, tight at the ankles, known as a sirwal. Women also wear a head shawl most commonly referred to as the lihaf.

As of [update] women reserve wearing their traditional dress for special occasions, and instead wear a loose black cloak called an abaya over their personal choice of clothing, whilst in some regions, particularly amongst the Bedouin, the burqa is still worn.

The Sultan has forbidden the covering of faces in public office. Music of Oman is extremely diverse due to Oman's imperial legacy.

There are over different forms of traditional Omani songs and dances. The Oman Centre for Traditional Music was established in to preserve them.

Instead of engaging foreign musicians, he decided to establish an orchestra made up of Omanis. The cinema of Oman is very small, there being only one Omani film Al-Boom as of [update].

It belongs to the Jawad Sultan Group of Companies, which has a history spanning more than 40 years in the Sultanate of Oman. The government has continuously held a monopoly on television in Oman.

Oman TV is the only state-owned national television channel broadcaster in Oman. It began broadcasting for the first time from Muscat on 17 November and separately from Salalah on 25 November On 1 June , the two stations at Muscat and Salalah linked by satellite to form a unified broadcasting service.

Although private ownership of radio and television stations is permitted, Oman has only one privately owned television channel.

It began broadcasting on January However, Majan TV's official channel website was last updated in early Oman Radio is the first and only state-owned radio channel.

In early , Muscat Media Group MMG , trend-setting media group founded by late Essa bin Mohammed Al Zedjali, launched a new private radio stations in hopes of catering educative and entertaining programmes to the youth of the Sultanate.

Oman has nine main newspapers, five in Arabic and four in English. The media landscape in Oman has been continuously described as restrictive, censored, and subdued.

In , the government drew international criticism for suspending the newspaper Azamn and arresting three journalists after a report on corruption in the country's judiciary.

Azamn was not allowed to reopen in although an appeal court ruled in late that the paper can resume operating. Traditional art in Oman stems from its long heritage of material culture.

Art movements in the 20th century reveal that the art scene in Oman began with early practices that included a range of tribal handicrafts and self-portraiture in painting since the s.

Bait Muzna Gallery is the first art gallery in Oman. Established in by Sayyida Susan Al Said, Bait Muzna has served as a platform for emerging Omani artists to showcase their talent and place themselves on the wider art scene.

In , Bait Muzna opened a second space in Salalah to branch out and support art film and the digital art scene. The gallery has been primarily active as an art consultancy.

The Sultanate's flagship cultural institution, the National Museum of Oman , opened on 30 July with 14 permanent galleries.

It showcases national heritage from the earliest human settlement in Oman two million years ago through to the present day.

The museum takes a further step by presenting information on the material in Arabic Braille script for the visually impaired, the first museum to do this in the Gulf region.

The Omani Society for Fine Arts, established in , offers educational programmes, workshops and artist grants for practitioners across varied disciplines.

In , the organisation opened its first exhibition on graphic design. It also hosted the "Paint for Peace" competition with 46 artists in honour of the country's 46th National Day , where Mazin al-Mamari won the top prize.

The organisation has additional branches in Sohar , Buraimi and Salalah. Bait Al- Zubair Museum is a private, family-funded museum that opened its doors to the public in Bait Al Zubair displays the family's collection of Omani artifacts that spans a number of centuries and reflect inherited skills that define Oman's society in the past and present.

Located within Bait Al-Zubair, Gallery Sarah, which opened in October , offers an array of paintings and photographs by established local and international artists.

The gallery also occasionally holds lectures and workshops. Omani cuisine is diverse and has been influenced by many cultures.

Omanis usually eat their main daily meal at midday, while the evening meal is lighter. However, these dinner timings differ according to each family; for instance, some families would choose to eat right after maghrib prayers and have dessert after taraweeh.

Arsia, a festival meal served during celebrations, consists of mashed rice and meat sometimes chicken. Another popular festival meal, shuwa, consists of meat cooked very slowly sometimes for up to 2 days in an underground clay oven.

The meat becomes extremely tender and it is infused with spices and herbs before cooking to give it a very distinct taste. Fish is often used in main dishes too, and the kingfish is a popular ingredient.

Mashuai is a meal consisting of a whole spit-roasted kingfish served with lemon rice. Rukhal bread is a thin, round bread originally baked over a fire made from palm leaves.

It is eaten at any meal, typically served with Omani honey for breakfast or crumbled over curry for dinner. Chicken, fish, and lamb or mutton are regularly used in dishes.

The Omani halwa is a very popular sweet, basically consisting of cooked raw sugar with nuts. There are many different flavors, the most popular ones being black halwa original and saffron halwa.

Halwa is considered as a symbol of Omani hospitality, and is traditionally served with coffee. As is the case with most Arab states of the Persian Gulf , alcohol is only available over-the-counter to non-Muslims.

Muslims can still purchase alcoholic drinks. Alcohol is served in many hotels and a few restaurants. The 19th Arabian Gulf Cup took place in Muscat , from 4 to 17 January and was won by the Omani national football team.

The 23rd Arabian Gulf Cup that took place in Kuwait , from 22 December until 5 January with Oman winning their second title, defeating the United Arab Emirates in the final on penalties following a goalless draw.

Oman's traditional sports are dhow racing, horse racing , camel racing , bull fighting and falconry. Ali Al-Habsi is an Omani professional association football player.

The Oman Olympic Committee played a major part in organising the highly successful Olympic Days, which were of great benefit to the sports associations, clubs and young participants.

The football association took part, along with the handball , basketball , rugby union , hockey , volleyball , athletics , swimming and tennis associations.

In Muscat hosted the Asian Beach Games. Oman also hosts tennis tournaments in different age divisions each year.

The Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex stadium contains a meter swimming pool which is used for international tournaments from different schools in different countries.

The Tour of Oman, a professional cycling 6-day stage race, takes place in February. Oman, along with Fujairah in the UAE , are the only regions in the Middle East that have a variant of bullfighting , known as 'bull-butting', organised within their territories.

It involves two bulls of the Brahman breed pitted against one another and as the name implies, they engage in a forceful barrage of headbutts.

The first one to collapse or concede its ground is declared the loser. Most bull-butting matches are short affairs and last for less than 5 minutes.

Yet others say it has a direct connection with Portugal , which colonised the Omani coastline for nearly two centuries. They have also been granted T20I status as they were among the top six teams in the qualifiers.

Oman scored high as of on the percentage of students who complete lower secondary school and on the literacy rate between the age of 15 and 24, However, Oman's net primary school enrollment rate in , which is Oman's higher education produces a surplus in humanities and liberal arts, while it produces an insufficient number in technical and scientific fields and required skill-sets to meet the market demand.

Accreditation standards and mechanisms with a quality control that focuses on input assessments, rather than output, are areas of improvement in Oman, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development report.

The adult literacy rate in was Since Sultan Qaboos' ascension to power in , the government has given high priority to education to develop a domestic work force, which the government considers a vital factor in the country's economic and social progress.

Today, there are over 1, state schools and about , students. Oman's first university, Sultan Qaboos University , opened in The University of Nizwa is one of the fastest growing universities in Oman.

Other post-secondary institutions in Oman include the Higher College of Technology and its six branches, six colleges of applied sciences including a teachers' training college , a college of banking and financial studies, an institute of Sharia sciences, and several nursing institutes.

Some scholarships are awarded each year for study abroad. According to the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities , the top-ranking universities in the country are Sultan Qaboos University th worldwide , the Dhofar University th and the University of Nizwa rd.

Since , Oman's undernourished share of the population has dropped from Since , the percentage of Omani children who receive key vaccines has consistently been very high above 99 percent.

As for road incident death rates, Oman's rate has been decreasing since , from As for mortality due to air pollution household and ambient air pollution , Oman's rate was Life expectancy at birth in Oman was estimated to be Oman has been making strides in health research too recently.

Comprehensive research on the prevalence of skin diseases was performed in North batinah governorate. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

This article is about the Arabian sultanate. For the adjacent historical confederation named Trucial Oman, see Trucial States. For other uses, see Oman disambiguation.

Not to be confused with Amman , which has the same spelling in Arabic as Oman. Country on the Arabian Peninsula. Website www. Main article: History of Oman.

Further information: Nabhani dynasty. Further information: Omani Empire. A British naval squadron in Muscat. Further information: Jebel Akhdar War.

Further information: Dhofar Rebellion. Main article: Climate of Oman. See also: Wildlife of Oman. Main articles: Politics of Oman and Human rights in Oman.

Main article: Human rights in Oman. Main article: Migrant workers in the Gulf region. Main article: Foreign relations of Oman.

Main article: Sultan of Oman's Armed Forces. Main article: Regions and governorates of Oman.

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