Location & Climate
Nestled between the Hajjar mountain range and the mouth of the Indian Ocean in the South of Oman. Salalah's unique location provides it with a more temperate climate than the rest of its Gulf neighbours.
While still warm and often humid, Salalah benefits from the tail end of the Indian monsoon, called Khareef, which provides it with a fine mist of rain for two months. It is a big tourist attraction because while the rest of the Gulf countries face searing temperatures of 50 degrees, Salalah's temperature cools down to the 20s, and the rain encourages the mountains to become green and lush with beautiful waterfalls.
Its proximity to Yemen is often a cause for concern to many of its visitors; however, because of Oman's neutrality in recent Gulf conflicts, Salalah remains a safe location for both residents and tourists.
Salalah has always enjoyed a prominence in the region because of the Frankincense trade. The indigenous plant grows only in southern Oman and in neighbouring Yemen. The yellow nuggets of resin were exported as far as the Roman Empire to be used as incense in church whilst also being highly in demand even earlier on by the Ancient Egyptians for their funeral preparations into the afterlife. Salalah has many important UNESCO heritage sites because of this, and a museum in Al Baleed very nicely presents many important archaeological findings.
Modern day Salalah also enjoys a special prominence in Oman as it is the birthplace of the Sultan and is said to hold a special place in his heart.
Living in Salalah
Salalah is well served by a new international airport, and flights are available to Muscat, Qatar, India, and the UAE with more opening up soon.
Salalah is well equipped with a modern mall and Carrefour and Lulu supermarkets as well as a host of smaller shops, traditional souks, and opportunities to buy organic produce direct from the farmer. If you are looking for international shopping outlets and vibrant nightlife, Muscat and Dubai are great to visit.
Families living in Salalah enjoy trips into the mountains and remote desert areas and exploring the stunning coastline. One can swim, snorkel, and dive in the warm ocean, surf some cool waves, or relax at the growing number of international hotels that are springing up in and around the city. Horse riding, fishing, karate, football, and music are all popular activities. Salalah is well connected via Muscat or Dubai to many destinations around the world.