Saturday, July 8, 2017

Ride the Train: Enjoy a train ride through cave

Ride the TrainEnjoy a train ride through cave.

Image result for al hoota train

Eid Holidays at Al Hoota Cave

Muscat: Almost 13,000 people visited Al Hoota Cave during the Eid Al Adha holiday, Omran, the operator of the cave complex, said.

“Thousands of visitors flocked to Al Hoota Cave following its recent reopening. Over the Eid Al Adha holiday, above 12,700 people visited one of the region’s leading natural attractions to enjoy the cave experience and its enhanced facilities. The high turnout of visitors reinforces the interest in Oman’s natural wonders, and that local and regional tourism in Oman is on the increase,” the tourism investment body said.

The mix of visitors included local Omani tourists as well as people from the GCC including Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Anticipating a large turnout, Omran and the on-site team operating the cave made the decision to open on Arafah day and the first day of Eid to accommodate visitors who made the trip in order to rediscover the wonders of the cave.

Marking the huge interest in the cave, it remained open an additional three hours per day in order to accommodate the large amount of visitors.

The staff were eager to accommodate all guests, which illustrates their will to go above and beyond to be able to cater to the crowd.

“We’ve transformed the offering at Al Hoota Cave, making it a completely new experience for visitors. The number of visitors over Eid was staggering, and just goes to show how excited people are about Oman’s natural wonders and finding out what’s new at the cave. The feedback from visitors was fantastic, and we’re extremely pleased to have exceeded peoples’ expectations,” Eng. Khalid Mirza, Director of Projects Development at Omran, said.

“We even made the decision to keep the cave open for an extra three hours every day so no one missed out – the team wanted every visitor to have the best experience and they went above and beyond to make this happen,” he added.

One of the visitors to Al Hoota Cave during Eid al Adha was week was Sudir Balachandran who said that the cave officials were very supportive, cooperative and efficient in managing the entire crowd.

“There were good arrangements at the restaurant with a variety of good food and very friendly and cheerful staff at the gift shop. I have visited many caves but the way Al Hoota has been maintained and the way nature has created it makes it a place one must certainly visit. Many thanks to the entire staff at Al Hoota Cave,” Sudir added.

Local SMEs have been instrumental in the revamped Al Hoota experience. Eng. Khalid said.

“We’ve leased many of the businesses on-site to local SMEs to operate them on our behalf. The restaurant and the gift shop for instance are run by a local company. This provides something completely authentic that you simply don’t find at other attractions, which are usually supported by generic fast food outlets. Omran is committed to engaging local SMEs in its developments, so we build Oman’s infrastructure together and empower local entrepreneurs,” Eng Khalid said.

As part of this dedication to involving the local SME community, Omran will partner with any local SMEs who own rest houses in the area surrounding Al Hoota cave to promote the cave to visitors in the area and allowing them to obtain a complete cultural experience during their stay.

This agreement has led to a local SME operating Al Hoota Cave’s restaurant. The local family business owns and runs a rest area at the nearby village called Misfat Al Abriyeen, so was an ideal choice to forge a partnership with to enhance the Al Hoota experience for visitors.

Such joint collaborations showcase Omran’s commitment to supporting the country’s social and economic development through the creation of destinations that benefit the people of Oman and calls upon others to promote their SMEs through fruitful collaboration.

Having being closed for several years, Omran and the Ministry of Tourism have worked to extensively renovate and Al Hoota Cave and its facilities.

The site now has visitor infrastructure that is worthy of such a spectacular attraction. In the coming months there will be additional acitivites added including zip lining, rock climbing and a rope course.
. To book your trip, please visit the online website booking system at

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Al Hoota Cave

Al Hoota Cave

Estimated to be over 2 million years old, Al Hoota Cave is located at the foot of Jabal Shams, in Al Hamra district. The cave was first opened to receive tourist on the in November 2006 during 17th National Day, after setting walkways, stairs and a light system to make the cave an enjoyable and safe experience for visitors. It is the first and only show cave in the Gulf area, which is accessible to the general public.

al hootah caveThe total length of the cave is around 4.5 Km, of which 500 m is open for tourists, in other words, around 10 % of the entire cave distance is for touristic use. The tour inside the cave is about 45 minutes with the guide, who will stop visitors in different points to share with them on the story, history and formation of the cave.

Al Hoota Cave contains a rich ecosystem that includes two lakes, one is a small northern lake and the other one is the central lake. The underground lake estimates to be holding 30,000 m³ of water. The main lake is 800 m long and 10 m wide, with a maximum depth of 15 m, where you can find rare blind fish “garra barreimiae”. 
The cave homes over 100 animal species including bats (Rhinopoma Muscatellum), arthropods, mollusks, big sparassid hunter spiders, snails, water beetles (Aglymbus gestroi), and other rare and endemic species. 

Al-Hoota cave system, like many other caves in Oman, was formed by the dissolution of limestone by acidic water. Caves might be seemingly made of stone, but they are made by water. It all starts when rainwater dissolves carbon dioxide from the atmosphere or soil, producing a dilute carbonic acid that dissolves the limestone, creating room for it, thus forming the cave. 10 mm of water dissolves its way through rock in 1000 years. The formation of the cave is entirely natural, and consists of stalactites hanging down from the ceiling, and stalagmites reaching up from the floor, forming interesting and sometimes uncanny shapes such as “the lion”. Some of the columns and curtains were formed over millions of years, and all structures are softened due to the flow of water.

The lighting system at the cave is done with remote controls, allowing the guides to turn it off whenever they complete their tour at any specific point. The cave is kept with no lights when there are no tours taking place in order to avoid disturbing the species at the cave, and to avoid the formation of algae.
Al Hoota Cave is the first and only show cave in Oman. All tours are lead by experienced, knowledgeable Guides. All tours are offered in English and Arabic languages, duration is about 45 minutes.

Visiting The Cave
Due to a recent increase in number of visitors, it is essential to make reservation in advance. Please note that due to a scientific reasons the number of visitors per day is limited. By booking your tour, you are not only making it comfortable for yourself, but also aiding us directly with our conservation effort of this natural resource.

Once the reservation is made and the time of the tour is communicated, the visitors have to be at the ticketing desk 15 minutes before the tour starts in order to get the tickets on time.
Payment by both cash and credit cards (Master card and Visa) is accepted.

Things To Know

1. Eating and drinking are not allowed inside the cave.
2. Al Hoota cave premises are environmentally-friendly. Please refrain from smoking.
3. Special needs and health problems should be declared in advance.
4. The itinerary inside the cave is about 800m and will take you around 40 min of walk to complete.
5. 225 ascending stairs are embedded inside the cave.
6. Children are under parent's supervision and responsibility.
7. Some areas in the cave may be wet and slippery.
8. Pets are not allowed on site.
9. Cameras and video cameras are not allowed inside the cave; please leave them at the ticketing booth.
10. Remember that cell phones do not work underground.
11. Cave slowly. You will see and enjoy more!
12. Follow your guide's instructions.
13. Leave nothing but your footsteps and take nothing but your memories.

Special rates applies for corporate bookings and for schools and universities of Oman .

Photography is not allowed inside the Cave due to scientific reasons, applying this restriction you are helping us to protect this non-renewable natural resource and be environmentally friendly. You can have a photo with the several options with Cave background at our gift shop.

Health Issues
Tour is not recommended for people with claustrophobia or those who suffer from back ailments, asthmatic, high blood pressure or pregnant women (last months of pregnancy).

Show-Cave Opening Hours:

Saturday - Thursday:
Morning sessions from 09:00 to 13:00 (last tour starts at 12:15)
Afternoon sessions from 14:00 to 18:00 (last tour starts at 17:15)
Morning sessions from 09:00 to 12:00 (last tour starts at 11:15)
Afternoon sessions from 14:00 to 18:00 (last tour starts at 17:15)
All facilities are closed on Mondays.
Reservations can be made 7 days a week from 08:30 till 16:30

They have a great website you can visit too

Attractions at Al Hoota Cave