Marine tourism enriches sultanate’s economy
Muscat – Marine tourism with varying aspects has become popular in the sultanate, said an official in the Ministry of Tourism.
It is because the country has many interesting and enjoyable places which attract tourists. The marine tourism has different types including boat trips, sailing and diving trips, as well as watching dolphins, etc, said Saleh bin Ali al Khayifi, director of Tourism Marketing and Promotion in the Ministry of Tourism.
With its beaches spread across 3,169sq km, Oman is ideally located to host marine activities. Already there are many forms of sports and water activities. Prominent among these activities are surface diving, dolphin watching, deep diving and sunset watching. There are many institutions in the sultanate which promote marine tourism. Also there are hotels and fine dining restaurants to meet the requirements of tourists.
Khayifi said, “The Ministry of Tourism supports everything which helps the sultanate achieve added value. Marine tourism is a specific tourism area which is given importance by the ministry. This is because the sultanate has beautiful beaches and places to organise tourism activities. The ministry is also making efforts to attract tourists to enjoy the beauty of Oman and explore its marine environment.”
There are also many investment opportunities open for companies in marine tourism, Khayifi said.
“Some companies are already working in the field. They organise several activities and provide services in this sector. The Ministry of Tourism supports these companies as it helps the tourism industry of the country. The ministry also keeps cruise tourism in the country up to date and according to international standards. This is to help all stakeholders achieve common objectives.”
There are several sites for cruises, whether in Muscat or in the rest of the sultanate. In most of the sultanate’s beaches, there are companies which specialise in the field of cruises and provide services.
They can be found in the Musandam governorate, Marina Bandar al Rowdha , Bandar al Khairan Reserve, Damaniyat Islands Nature Reserve, Halaniyat Islands and Sawadi Beach, Sur, Duqm beach, Masirah Island in addition to Al Jissah beach and a number of sites in Dhofar governorate.