TOPO Canyoning

Wadi Shab, Tiwi

Topo published on |


wadi Shab
Wadi Shab, from the Jebel Hajir plateaus, lies just before Wadi Tiwi. From the bottom, it offers quick and easy access to magnificent pools and an equally extraordinary grotto of limpid turquoise water. A return trip that can be made in 2 hours up to the abandoned village of Sarooj and even a little beyond, without much difficulty, before descending back into its bed to the aquatic grotto. Very accessible, this part of Wadi Shab is consequently very busy, which in no way detracts from its beauty, but it does make a change from the other wadis in the area, Ta'ab and Tiwi, wild and lost, far from all these people... No equipment is required and the itinerary, which is obvious, allows you to enjoy the aquatic atmosphere of Oman's canyons for a short day's rest.

Technical summary

Type ✦ Water canyon
Location ✦ Tiwi
Region ✦ Charquiya, Hajar Oriental
Country ✦ Oman
Difficulty ✦ v1-a3-II
Max recall ✦ None
Duration ✦ 2h to 2h30 (round trip)
Interest ✦ ★

Access to the place

On the E17 from Quriyat to Sur, exit at Tiwi. After passing under the freeway, you quickly reach the mouth of the Shab by road, under a large bridge. There's a parking lot and a small grocery store there, as well as small boats for crossing (not essential).

Map & topo

Itinerary description

Hiking to the start 30'

Cross the stream on foot, with waist-deep water, and take the well-marked path on the opposite side, on the right bank (uphill). Pass a small palm grove and continue along the rocky bed before narrowing. Keep to the right and follow the path over a pretty ledge above the pools, with the first views of the green pools. As you come out of the ledge, the path opens up into a large boulder field, following the cairns and red markers. Further on, another bend to the left brings you to the start of the small gorge.

Course 1h30 à 2h

An out-and-back canyon, with the most interesting part very popular for its easy access. No equipment required to descend from Sarooj. There's water all year round in the cave and in the following reaches.

Part 1: Back up to Sarooj

Pass along the right-hand flank of Wadi Shab and follow the ridge system that rises above the wadi. You quickly gain height. You then pass above the cave, then higher still, the path remains marked and equipped in places with small Bedouin steps, you find an access to descend to the abandoned village of Sarooj. There's no one there any more, so it's much quieter. Continuing along the bed of the wadi, on the right-hand side, you can climb up to the next bend on the right and measure the length of the wadi.
Part 2: Descending wadi Shab

From Sarooj, stay on the wadi bed and descend through boulders and chaos without too much difficulty. After about 20 minutes, you come to a large ledge with a beautiful pool below. Jumps are possible, 6m to the left and 4m to the right, with a little de-escalation. Swim out and arrive just above the cave.

Here you have 2 options: either de-escalate over the waterfall using a knotted rope, or jump 4m down a hole to land in the water cave. To get out of the grotto, you have to swim between 2 walls, with just enough space for your head and your bag, in a small corridor: atmosphere guaranteed! Once out of the cave, after a short swim through another large pool, you quickly find your way back to the approach path.


Simply the same path in reverse.

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