Venturing further back into history, sites such as Sumhuram and Ubar – thought by many to be the famed Atlantis of the Sands – beckon visitors with their echoes of an ancient way of life. Of course, modern Omani culture still carries many of the traditions of bygone eras. It remained effectively underdeveloped until 1970, when His Majesty Sultan Qaboos ascended to the throne and began what many called the “Blessed Renaissance”. Oman is often referred to as the ‘true Arabia’ because its ancient culture has been so beautifully preserved. Here, you’ll still find souks selling silver and frankincense, cattle and pottery, in the same way as has been customary for thousands of years. The Omani people themselves also have a well-deserved reputation for being amongst the world’s most hospitable. Their smiling faces testify to their eagerness to share their unique culture with visitors, and most travellers to Oman will have at least one story of remarkable local hospitality.