The Oman is an arid country, located on the eastern corner of the Arabic peninsula. To the east it is bordered (from north to south) by the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen, and to the west by the Indian Ocean. The Capital is Muscat, a harbour city at the northern coast.
The Oman is not a well developed tourist destination, but because of the oil dollars it is well developed with modern infrastructure and rather expensive..
Today this country is important for its oil deposits. In former centuries its was important for its frankincense. Frankincense is the resin of trees called Boswellia of the family Burseraceae. It contains a volatile oil which was valued in ancient times in worship and as medicine. Despite the mystic qualities it actually is a mild disinfectant.
There are numerous fine caves in the country. However, until a few years ago the country was a white spot on the map, concerning any kind of underground tourist site. Even cavers had explored only a few of the known cave systems. Most work was done in connection with underground sweet water bodies.
Some years ago this changed, as the Omani government realized that caves could be a tourist attraction, and probably an after-oil business. Al Hotta Cave has been developed as a show cave and opened in 2006. Visitor numbers of some 75,000 people annually convinced the government to develop even more show caves. The most interesting candidate is Majlis Al-Jin, a single chamber of enormous size with three holes in the ceiling where the sun shines in. Another impressive cave, which was discovered in the 1990s, is Teyq Cave, which is 250m in depth and said to be 300 million m³ in size. This would make it the largest chamber of the world concerning volume, but it seems the surveying is not completed so far.
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