Road trip: Madha Oman (inside UAE)

No checkpoints and no visas to check out this lovely little Omani picnic spot near Fujairah. We take a Ram truck!

By Shahzad Sheikh

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Regular readers might remember our last road trip in a Ram Truck, which didn’t quite go to plan and nearly ended with Team MME being either possessed by spirits, abducted by aliens or turned into zombies! Read that here.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Perhaps somewhat foolhardily, two and half years on, I decided to take a Ram back in that direction, but this time in the day time, and on this occasion I even took my kids with me for a day out!

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Thankfully it turns out things are very different during the day, and we instead found a great picnic spot and some spectacular views – all in a little Omani enclave called Madha, just a few minutes drive from Murbah – which is between Fujairah and Khor Fakkan.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

It’s getting warm now, so this might just be the last day trip before it really starts to get hot, but it’s definitely well worth heading out there this weekend if you’re looking for something to do.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Turns out you don’t need a Ram or even a 4×4 to get there though, nonetheless going anywhere in a 2014 Ram is cool. This remains one of our favourite trucks and still provides incredible levels of space and comfort with a cosseting ride and enough storage and toys to keep everyone happy inside.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Plus it has the torque and power to get you out of any situation and if you are going to go adventuring, it doesn’t hurt to go in something as invincible as this – certainly kept us safe from the ghouls last time!

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

If you have GPS, stick in these coordinates 25.268485, 56.301053, if not it’s still very simple: get into Fujairah and head up towards Khor Fakkan, about 19km later (or 7km before Khor Fakkan) you turn left towards Madha and drive for 7.2km.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Note that after just 1km you’re technically actually in Oman – part of the Musandam Governorate (but not connected) that’s a 75km square isolated enclave within the UAE. But there is no checkpoint and you don’t need a visa (though it would probably be wise to keep IDs and passports handy with you just in case. You also need to have car insurance for Oman – though most UAE insurance policies include that now as standard anyway (check your documents).

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Funnily enough, there is another enclave within this enclave that is actually part of the Emirate of Sharjah! It’s called Nahwa and there’s about forty families living there. Unlike our previous excursion however, and at the time of this visit there a couple of months back, you could no longer continue through after Nahwa towards Masafi.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

So to get to this picnic spot, having entered ‘Oman’ from Murbah, you go past the actual village of Madha until you come up on a rise that veers off to the left, with a fork off to the right directly ahead of you. This is just before a (presently) dried up lake bed and large dam, about a kilometre before Nahwa.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

I fully intend to go back later this year to see if there’s ever water in this lake, because there’s a spectacular viewing point on a hillock that promises a very picturesque view indeed if there’s an actual lake here.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

Meanwhile you descend a tight road with a u-bend that certainly would give a Ram driver a little pause for thought but in the end didn’t prove a challenge, and come upon a picnic area complete with toilets, children’s play areas, huts and a great view of the mountains and the valley heading back towards Madha.

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

There are no shops, cafe or restaurants here however, so I’d recommend stocking up with food and especially water and drinks back in Fujairah before heading out here. Later on you can take a little drive through the valley itself if you’re in something as capable as the Ram, but prudently we decided to head back home as soon as the first signs of dusk presented themselves!

Dodge Ram Truck Road trip: Madha, Oman (inside UAE)

If you happen to go visit Madha Oman, let us know how you got on in the comments section below.

6 responses to “Road trip: Madha Oman (inside UAE)”

  1. Terence Baker says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed this, Shahzad. Thank you. I will be in the UAE in a couple of weeks, with the Saturday and Sunday off. Two things, if you would be so kind.
    i. I have heard horror stories about driving in the UAE, but then I have heard horror stories about, for example, visiting Colombia, and that was a wonderful experience. Is driving in the UAE so bad? Any advice?
    ii. This journey to Madha sounds excellent. Are you saying that it is only possible to get there by taking the close-to-the-coast road via Al Qurayyah and Murbah? Once in the village of Madha is it impossible to drive through it and on to Nahwa and out (I see on Google maps that at Nahwa you can either go straight (I mean, theoretically) or take a left along a road full of bends.
    Many thanks,
    Terrt

    • admin says:

      There are always horror stories – keep your wits about you and you’ll be fine. The road network is great here, and honestly driving standard is better here than in other Middle East countries so you should be fine! As for the last time I was there, the route I’ve described is the only way to get to the location, the road is not officially connected to the other side – however they were building a tunnel there and that might have opened, but I haven’t been back there since to check. Enjoy!

  2. Terence Baker says:

    Thank you Shahzad very much for your reply and advice. It is a common theme when travelling–and one I get caught up into on occasion despite having been fortunate to have travelled widely–that you read horror stories and start to believe them. Most people, as we know, tend to rush to social media if they want to complain, not if they want to praise.
    regards,

  3. Dear Shahzad.
    I did get to Madha, Oman (see thread above), and it was wonderful. Stopped off in the main section, where the large mosque is, and then drove up the valley, first to the right, then back and to the left. The road to the right ends unceremoniously when I assume a storm and flood washed it away. SUVs can negotiate a new “road” that drops down to the wadi bed and slowly gets back to the other end of the destroyed road. The road to the left ended (for me that is) at a ford, where I parked and sat with my feet in the river watching Omani dressed in observant clothes doing the same while having picnics.
    I had already been to Abu Dhabi, but on this trip I ticked off the other six emirates, including Manama in Ajman, which I remember from being a child produced postage stamps, although I had no idea where they were from.
    Thanks for the advice. May your future travels be wonderful

    • admin says:

      Fantastic! Great to hear you enjoyed the trip. We’ll try to do some more as the weather improves later in the year.

  4. Imran says:

    HiFriends

    I am very exited to be in Madha and have been planning for quite some time. I believe I have now the complete understanding of roads (hope the road network has improved). However, is overnight staying during new year advisable?

    Regards

    Imran

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