During the first week of November every year, about 100 runners from 15 different countries congregate  to take part in a unique adventure in the breathtaking wilderness of the Oman Desert. The Oman Desert Marathon is a race covering 165 km requiring each runner to be completely self sufficient.

The runners will embody the essence and essential part of a real “desert experience”. This vast expanse of awe-inspiring beauty and fantasy will present   a physical, emotional and spiritual experience of a lifetime. The course will start from the Alwasil Oasis of Bidiyah and finish on the shore of the Arabian Sea.

Six stages and six different perspectives of one of the most beautiful deserts of the world: red, golden and white sands will make this journey unique and always different, in a scenario that doesn’t know monotony. The six stages of the race will take the runners through mile upon mile of astonishing shapes and sizes of sand dunes, palm groves, hamlets and villages. They will pass semi nomadic tribes who still follow the Silk Route through the Oman Desert, wildlife and stunning sunsets and finish the race with an explosion of emotion when they arrive at the shores of the Arabian Sea. There is a night stage when the  awe-struck runners will be inspired by the silence, solitude and mysticism of the desert, illuminated only by the twinkling of millions of stars.

For more information about the stages, read the last edition reports from our blog


All runner are completely self-sufficient, requiring them to carry all of their own equipment except for water which is provided at checkpoints at approximately every 10 km intervals. The organization will not provide sleeping mats or sleeping bags at the camps. Carrying all they need for five days is a an enormous challenge, more so than running 165 km, and this is fundamental to the experience of the authentic desert life.


The Oman Desert Marathon course is designed to embrace the desert experience, and the Oman desert is one of the most beautiful locations for such an event. Six stages of 21 km, 25 km, 28 km , 29 km, 42 km and 20 km take the runners into the Oman Desert with a variety of landscapes and sand conditions giving the runner a complete desert experience, including a night stage that will take the runners through the magic of the desert illuminated by the stars, from the desert to the beautiful beaches of the Arabian Sea.


The Oman Desert Marathon offers maximum safety and personal attention to all runners, by monitoring the runners and the race from vantage points that will not interfere with the sense of vastness and loneliness of the desert but making sure that nobody gets lost and that everybody can call or be spotted for help promptly. The race is organized by an Omani team, with the full support of the Government and the local communities: the runners will feel safe and welcome throughout this odyssey.


The 165 km course is divided into 6 stages that many top runners of the Marathon Des Sables choose as the best place to train. The course is also the perfect choice for the less experienced runner who wants to embrace the magic of the life in the desert without running over prolonged distances.


The state religion is the least common form of Islam and is known as Ibadism. The doctrine places great importance on pacifism, tolerance and leniency. Ibadism is only found in Oman, Zanzibar and a few smaller enclaves in Tunisia and Algeria. Oman is a wealthy country where property crime is very rare. Oman is safe. A strict religious, moral and legal code means crime of any type is severely punished, and the deterrent is effective. Omanis are also a very relaxed and polite people, so crime is not in their nature.


The economic value is an important aspect of racing abroad. Before and after the race, runners are guest at the ODM Camp. They can also enjoy the thermal springs of Wadi Bani Khalid, an ideal location to relax and recover after completing this contest of stamina and human competition. Accommodation, food (both before and after the race), drinks, and transfers are all included. There are no hidden extras. At the end of this momentous journey a special meal will be offered to all the runners and the last day is spent resting and visiting the Omani beauties