Muscat: Al Hoota Cave, Oman’s most popular natural tourist destination, reopens to the public today.
Al Hoota, which originally opened in November 2006, was the first cave in the GCC to receive tourists.
Before it closed for renovations in 2012 , it received around 75,000 tourists a year.
Repeated flooding into the cave over the years due to rains had caused damage and cracks to the cave.
Under the new improvements, tourists will take an electric train (Oman’s first) from the visitor centre directly into the cave.
Apart from the refurbished children’s play area and gift shop, an additional restaurant has been added.
Speaking to Oman News Agency, Khalid Mirza, Director of Project Development at the state-owned development company Omran, promised a “top notch tourist experience”.
The cave is 4.5km long, 500m of which is open to the public.
A geological museum on site showcases over 150 types of rocks, wood, corals and other unique materials found in the cave.
It also has interactive stations explaining how the formation of such materials take place.
Oman has more than eight caves, varying in size, length and geographic composition including: Abu Haban, Al Kittan, Al Hootah, Majlis Al Jinn, Jernan, Muqal, Al Marnif, Teeq and Twi Ateer.