Oman and Maldives
Combine an adrenaline-fuelled five nights in Oman with a week relaxing in the paradise-perfect Maldives. Start your holiday exploring the Musandam Peninsula's rugged landscapes, both above and below the water. Then, fly to the Maldives Laamu Atoll to dive with manta rays, spending surface intervals on talcum-white sandbanks.
Itinerary at a Glance:
- Paraglide into Six Senses Zighy Bay for the ultimate in hotel arrivals
- Dive the fjords of the Musandam Peninsula, spotting swirls of marine life at dive sites you'll most likely have to yourself
- Take a scenic seaplane ride over the paradise islands of the Maldives before touching down at Six Senses Laamu
- Dive with manta rays at the recently discovered manta cleaning station Hithadhoo Corner, then learn all about these gentle giants at the islands Manta Trust station
Why Book with Original Diving?
When To Travel
All of the holidays we create are completely tailor-made to you
Day 1: International Flight
Your overnight international flight leaves for Dubai (the access airport for Oman's Musandam Peninsula) from London in the late evening. The flight takes seven hours.
Day 2: Arrive in Oman’s Musandam Peninsula
Your international flight lands in Dubai at breakfast time. Upon arrival you will be met by one of our team on the ground and privately transferred to Six Senses Zighy Bay in the Omani exclave of Musandam.
The drive should take around two hours including a final ten minutes full of hairpin turns up and over a mountain range. It's from the summit of said peaks that you can choose to paraglide down to the beach for one of the greatest hotel arrivals.
Once you have checked into your room, spend the afternoon sunbathing by the pool, snorkelling from the beach or indulging in a spa treatment. You will be spending the next five nights here.
Day 3: Six Senses Zighy Bay
This morning it's time to dive. Known as the Norway of Arabia, Musandam has no reefs, rather fjords and dramatic pink-sheened cliffs that are home to a huge variety of marine life - all without the crowds of the Red Sea. Each dive brings something different from tiny macro life through to whale shark sightings if you are very lucky.
Refuel on a fresh lunch back at the hotel before setting out on the boat for an afternoon dive. Alternatively, take the guided Smuggler's Bay Hike through the mountains - or for the more relaxation inclined, head to the spa for a massage.
This evening, take a dhow (traditional Omani sailing boat) cruise and watch the sunset behind the mountains over the coastline or sip on sundowners at the pool before dining on authentic Arabian dishes at the Spice Market restaurant.
Days 4 - 5: Six Senses Zighy Bay
Spend the next couple of days diving, exploring the surrounding mountains and enjoying the hotel facilities (namely the sweep of drop dead gorgeous white sand beach).
The surrounding landscape is an adrenaline lover's dream, with mountain biking, rock climbing and hiking galore. For a dose of local culture, take a 4x4 drive to the neighbouring village of Sabatyn, stopping at a viewpoint at 13,000ft along the way.
This evening you can watch the sunset from the hotel's mountaintop fine dining restaurant Sense On The Edge before dining on delicious dishes under the stars.
Day 6: Maldives Ahoy
Today after an early breakfast it is time to leave for the island idylls of the Maldives. You will be privately transferred back across the border to Dubai airport in plenty of time for your mid-morning flight to Male International airport. The flight takes just over four hours.
Once you have cleared customs you will be met by one of our team and transferred to the check-in for your domestic flight to Six Senses Laamu. The scenic flight should take around 50 minutes, so employ your sharpest elbows to get a window seat for picture postcard views of the beautiful droplet islands against the signature aquamarine waters.
The only resort in the Laamu Atoll, Six Senses Laamu is completely remote but not remotely uncomfortable. Spend the next week alternating between diving the superb dive sites in the archipelago and enjoying all the resort has to offer.
Days 7 – 10: Six Senses Laamu
Spend your time exploring the spectacular dive sites surrounding the island with the crack dive team.
There's a great variety of diving, from more advanced channel dives to sloping wall dives and the calm house reef. The recently discovered manta cleaning station Hithadhoo Corner is well worth a visit, and conveniently only a ten-minute boat ride from the resort. Back at base you can learn all about the mantas you've seen at the Manta Trust centre where marine biologists identify the resident population from their distinctive markings.
Either head into the ocean for an afternoon dive or take a dhow to a deserted sandbank to watch the sunset whilst tucking into a private barbeque dinner.
Day 11: Six Senses Laamu
Today you can set out on a full day dive excursion to explore lesser-known sites a bit further afield, spending surface intervals refuelling on delicious picnics on deserted sandbanks.
Back at the resort, watch the sunset across the lagoon at the Chill Bar before dining on freshly caught seafood at Longitude, the resorts Asian-influenced over-water restaurant.
- Take a surfing lesson in the lagoon, or for the experienced, head out to the adrenaline fuelling Ying Yang break.
- Take a relaxing catamaran sailing tour to the local islands to snorkel and dolphin watch.
- Get a glimpse of local Maldivian life exploring the Hithadhoo Island.
Day 12: Six Senses Laamu
Spend the day island-hopping across the atoll's different islands, snorkelling the reefs, visiting different villages and dining on a delicious picnic lunch on an uninhabited island.
Alternatively, soak up the sun from your villa, sipping on cocktails and snacking on pizza from the sunken poolside bar Sip Sip.
Take a sunset dhow cruise before indulging in a private candlelit dinner at a hidden spot on the island.
Day 13: Homeward Bound
Sadly it's time to go home. After a leisurely breakfast you will be transferred back to Male in plenty of time for your late morning flight. The 11-hour flight lands back in London in the early evening.
Emily C, Eleanor and Jacqui are our experts for this itinerary and as seasoned travellers they have the inside track on the most memorable adventures.