Oman may be small, but this state on the Arabian Peninsula is a powerhouse that rules over the sea. Oman has seen enormous development in the past 50 years and in considered one of the most developed countries in the Arab world. The country is marked by excellent infrastructure, rich culture, and a friendly populace that will enhance your study abroad adventure.
Oman has a unique Arab culture due to influences from Eastern Africa and India. The country’s cuisine features specialties from traditional Arabic food as well as Turkish, Pakistani, Lebanese and Indian. Seafood is prevalent and delicious, thanks to the country’s long coastline, and if you study in Oman you’ll even try shark, a local delicacy. Oman’s unique culture is reflected in many other areas of life, including vibrant and intricately embroidered outfits and over 130 different traditional dances.
Students considering studying in Oman should be aware that the country is ruled by an absolute monarchy which strictly adheres to Islamic tradition. It may be necessary to adjust to unexpected gender norms and religious customs, however, this will also be an incredibly eye-opening experience. The people of Oman are known to be humble and hospitable, so take extra care to respect them and the local culture.
If you’re already looking forward to spending a semester or year in Oman, continue reading for more information that will help you to plan the perfect study abroad experience!
Muscat: Muscat is the capital and largest city of Oman as well as an important trading port for the area. The city has a well-developed economy and cultural influences from India and Portugal. It also has many historical museums, which are the perfect attraction for curious students.
Seeb: This coastal city is an important fishing center in Oman. It is home to many historical monuments, including an ancient palace and a traditional Arabic garden.
Students visiting Oman should be sure to visit these important destinations!
Al-Hoota Cave: This is one of the largest cave systems in the world and a great place for the daring to explore.
Bahla Fort: This UNESCO World Heritage Site includes a variety of monuments such as ancient palaces, mosques, and marketplaces.
Planning Your Trip
How to Choose a Program
Choosing to study abroad is a big decision, and it’s important to choose your specific program very carefully. These factors can help you determine your priorities and choose a program that suits you perfectly.
Although the first college was founded in Oman in 1986, the country now has over 20 universities. They offer a variety of subjects, including humanities, social sciences, economics, and law. With more and more local Omanis seeking higher education, there is a developing intellectual community across the country.
Arabic is the official language of Oman, but English is also spoken widely throughout the country. There is also a wide variety of indigenous dialects.
Many students studying in Oman will decide to live in a homestay with a family. This is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in the culture and to learn about daily life. Another great housing choice is to live in a dormitory or apartment with other students, where you will make many friends and learn about Omani social life.
Students visiting Oman must apply for a visa before they arrive. It can take up to ten days to process a visa application.
Social Life and Student Culture
Much of the culture of Oman revolves around the Islamic tradition. If you choose to study in Oman, you will be able to participate in and learn about these customs though services and festivals. Food is also an important part of Omani culture, and you will spend much of your time eating specialties from the area, which is an important social activity.
Study Abroad Programs in Oman
Other Study Abroad Programs in the Middle East
Not enough options in Oman? Check out these other Study Abroad programs in the Middle East!
Helen “Peggie” Miller Scholarship
The Helen “Peggie” Miller Scholarship is made possible by the generosity of her children who are AFS returnees to honor her legacy. This is a merit and need-based scholarship for students interested in studying abroad for a year or semester.
Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grant Travel Grant
The Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Travel Grant helps cover outbound and return airfare to all CIEE program locations for students who demonstrate financial need. All students who receive a Federal Pell Grants are guaranteed a GAIN Travel Grant. CIEE GAIN Travel Grants are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Aussie Kiwi Haere Scholarship
The Aussie Kiwi Haere Scholarship is available for students motivated to haere (Maori language translation for travel) to select study abroad destinations in Australia and New Zealand.