Car Drops off an Australian Ferry

The original ferries to Masirah Island in Oman are Landing Craft Tank (LCT) type roll-on roll-off ferries. Their shallow flat base makes them ideal to navigate the sand bars between the Oman mainland and Masirah Island. In Australia the crossing to Fraser Island is a similar distance, around 20kms,  and sea condition. Fortunately on the many crossings Ive made to Masirah Island Ive never seen a vehicle drop off – like this one to Fraser Island Australia Continue reading “Car Drops off an Australian Ferry”

Masirah Island

a short hop from the mainland

We drove onto Masirah Island in total darkness after a ferry trip and arrived into the hotel in time for dinner. The next morning the 60kilometer length of the island would be ours. Rock pools at low tide revealed frightened fish, while the sands occasionally showed elegant Cowrie shells and beyond the sands of the aptly named White Beach provide a place to swim off.

White Beach Masirah
White Beach Masirah

This was where we came across Continue reading “Masirah Island”

Turtles on Masirah Island Oman

Masirah Island’s Turtles were the subject for the HAO this evening

Elayne Looker gave a very nice presentation to the Historical Association of Oman about Masirah Island’s Turtles in Oman.

Masirah Island's Turtles in Oman with Elayne Looker
Elayne Looker brought some massive Turtle skulls to her talk, on the right is a Leatherback and next to it is a Loggerhead skull..

She has been surveying and researching on Masirah Island where the worlds largest population of Loggerhead Turtles nest . Elayne gives training to all Turtle Rangers in Oman and certainly the ones at Ras Al Jinz are passing her information on to visitors. Amongst the hazards turtles face are tourism properties near beaches, and the example of one on the main turtle beach in Masirah was mentioned. Other hazards are plastic bags, which resemble jellyfish a key food for many turtles and ‘J’ hooks used to catch fish.

Wihibah Sands to Masirah Island

We drove through the Wihibah Sands (also variously Wahiba Sands / Sharqiyyah Sands) desert and reached the coast in time to join

Tony Walsh Wihibah Sands
Tony Walsh Wihibah Sands

in the festivities at a friend’s wedding.

With the discharge of rifles Continue reading “Wihibah Sands to Masirah Island”

Meals in Oman

It has been a week of contrasts with meals for me. In the rarefied atmosphere up on the 2000meter high plateau of Jabal Akhdar I took clients on a walk through the flowering Peach, Apricot and Almond gardens where fragile flowers bloom in a rugged landscape. We then enjoyed a wonderful lunch of rice and chicken in the home of a local family – the chicken, flavoured with spices was the most tasty chicken I had eaten in a long time .
Several hundred kilometres away near Masirah Island & 2000meters lower down from my mountain lunch I shared a night-time meal of rice and locally caught fish a few meters from the Arabian Sea. We joined local fisher folk for dinner by the light of an old lantern with the sound of the surf in a very atmospheric meal
The section of coast we enjoyed has a scattering of small fishing villages who use the beach or boat to travel from one to the other.
During the winter, the beaches are full of gulls snacking off discarded fish from the anglers’ nets. Other sea bird passing including chains of undulating cormorants as they flew from their roost to feeding grounds farther along the coast.
By way of contrast back in Muscat I was delighted to have a couple of dinners at The Chedi with Timothy Burrill just before his film ‘La vie en Rose’ won a couple of Oscars. With classic Italian food, a delightful restaurant and sparkling conversation from Timothy and Petra it rounded off a week of special meals.