What do most of us know about Oman? Well, probably not much, except from the fact that it is the only country in the world which name begins with O (at least in English language). It is then highly improbable that you associate it with islands and yacht cruises. Oh, you’d be surprised… Let us take you on a short trip showing you the beauty of Omani islands – and then pack your backs and come explore them yourself!
Damaniyat Islands Nature Reserve
Another perfect spot for nature lovers is definitely Damaniyat Islands Nature Reserve, situated just about 18 km off the coast of Barka (70 km west of the Omani capital, Muscat). It is a truly picturesque complex of nine islands of sparkling sandy beaches surrounded by crystal blue sea waters and coral reefs. This archipelago is a great destination not only for people who enjoy diving and snorkelling, but also for passionate bird-watchers – many of the rare migratory and indigenous species of birds regularly visit this place.
While cruising in the south of Oman, along the coast of Hasik, it’s worth stopping by the archipelago of Al-Hillaniyat. It is composed by five highly elevated islands, truly diverse when it comes to landscapes. Be sure to find some magnificent springs, bays, deserts, highlands and much more there, not mentioning large groups of huge turtles and a lot of endemic species of birds. If you’re into history, you’d be happy to know that somewhere in the wild of Al-Hillaniyat islands you can also visit some pretty well preserved ancient sites.
If you’re looking for an ultimate calm and seeking harmony during your holiday, you should definitely sail your yacht to the south east coast of Oman where the Masirah Island – the biggest of all Omani islands – is located. Together with the surrounding group of islands – Marsis, Cha’nazi and Kalban – it creates an unique place for everyone who likes to hide from crowds among the vivid, dynamic nature. Relaxing sound of sea waves, incredibly pure air and the touch of cool breeze – doesn’t it sound divine?
Islands of Barr Al-Hikman – Al-Hikman Peninsula
Reading the descriptions of all previously mentioned islands, you may have realized that Oman is a perfect destination for everyone who fancy some bird-watching. The area of Al-Hikman peninsula in central Oman with numerous tiny islands near its coast, is a real treat for all bird lovers, since it is claimed to be one of the most important bird migration stations in the whole south west Asia. If you’re lucky, you can observe some fascinating bird congregations here. Many species visit Al-Hikman, mostly water birds that may be even coming from northern shores of Siberia! It’s not all about birds here, though – another fantastic option is diving, snorkelling and discovering colourful coral reefs near the shores.
So – where will you sail first?