Bradt´s is the most up-to-date and informative guide to Oman, the Arabian peninsula´s most welcoming destination, fully revised and updated by an author who has been living in Oman and Arabia since 1986. Oman is finally reaping the economic benefit of its location between Europe, Africa and Asia with substantial investment in major shipping ports and significant expansion of the national airline with new routes to Western Europe and East Asia. Despite being at the crossroads of great trade routes and empires, Oman has remained an independent country through much of its long history, and today tourism and travel are a major focus for Oman´s government. This new edition covers the recent substantial investment in new airport facilities and upmarket accommodation and also features the historic UNESCO towns of Sumhuram and Al Balid. If you want to live like a local, the guide also tells you how to slow cook the traditional spiced meat ´Shuwa´ and how to be a perfect guest if invited into an Omani home. Oman is not merely a desert. While it has the classic sand seas - Wahiba Sands - home to the nomadic Bedouin and their camels, this sultanate also boasts lush monsoon-soaked valleys near Salalah, mountain villages surrounded by green terraced fields of fruit trees and rose bushes, and the reef-fringed Daymaniyat Islands. With such a varied wilderness there is huge scope for adventure. Oman is increasingly perceived as a high-end cultural destination. The new Opera House has opened, directly supported by the Sultan, with top-notch international performers like Placido Domingo. The guide includes advice on property buying, since Omani law changed to allow expatriates to buy, explaining the rules and regulations. There is also a detailed overview of language schools teaching Arabic, not found in other guides. With advice on cultural etiquette, basic Arabic phrases and political history - as well as full practical information on where to stay and eat, and what to see and do.