The initiative to relocate the industrial elements of the port and redevelop the dockside for tourism is well underway with the refurbishment of the fish market almost complete. The port will provide a permanent home for Shabab Oman, the country's magnificent fully-rigged training ship, which is soon to be retired now that its replacement has been commissioned. In the meantime, the harbour is home to His Majesty's dhow, visiting cruise ships, the high-speed ferry to Musandam and assorted naval vessels.
Start at the old fish market at the western end, where fishmongers hawk tuna, mahi-mahi and lobster, all hauled in fresh each morning. Continue to Muttrah Souk, and amble among labyrinthine alleys packed with copper coffee pots and khanjars (traditional daggers), while abaya-clad women haggle for gold. Head past Muttrah Fort, built by occupying Portuguese forces in the 16th century, then climb the 100-odd steps to the top of the restored watchtower at the eastern end of the esplanade for wonderful views of the harbour.
Muttrah Fish Market (open daily 6am-10am; Muttrah Corniche near Hotel Marina Muscat). Muttrah Souk (open Sat-Thurs 8am-1pm and 5pm-9pm, Fri 5pm-9pm; Muttrah Corniche).