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Pictures of our trip 2013 to Oman – part 1    Musandam Peninsula
Oman’s Exclave at the Strait of Hormuz
- with our vehicle in February 2013:
Oman 1999 - from mid-March to mid-April 1999
Oman 2013 – Part 2 - February 2013: Sohar - Muscat - Rustaq - Nizwa
Oman 2013 – Part 3 - March 2013: Sur - East Coast - Island of Masirah - Dhofar
Oman 2013 – Part 4 - March 2013: Salalah & Surroundings (Dhofar) - Nizwa
Oman 2013 – Part 5 - March 2013: Western Hajar Mountains
(Oman 2013 Part 6) - April 2013: Omani Madha Exclave in the UAE
Oman Map
         Middle East Map


latest picture: February 2, 2013
  • click a picture to see details

001  The hamlet Ghumdah and a few fishing
boats lay picturesquely between the Arabian
Gulf and the rugged mountain scenery along
the coastal road from the UAE border of
Tibat to Khasab, the capital of Musandam .....
002  ..... it nestles on the foot of the
003  At Quida fishing boats and an Arab
dhow lie peacefully  in one of the many
fjords. The Musandam Peninsula is
dubbed “Norway of Arabia"
004  Life is still relaxed in Khasab, the capital.
The restaurant in front of the main mosque is
a popular meeting place of the male society
005  Bearded men dominate the
scene of the town. An Omani is
gossiping with a friend
006  The Khasab Fort was built by
the Portuguese in the 17th century
and houses now a museum
007  Mosques and goats are an integral
part of the Omani charm …..
008  ..... in front of the dramatic
mountain scenery they
are especially stunning
009  Speed boats are lined up in the
harbor – smuggling vessels that transport
US cigarettes and electronics to neigh-
boring Iran at dark. Piracy and contraband
had a long tradition in Oman
010  A flagged government building
and two minarets shine in an impeccable
white against the dark mountain peaks
011  Oriental villas in the city center of
Khasab are testimony of their long
seafarer tradition. Here a model of a
dhow is “floating” over the entrance …..
012  ..... and here the entrance of the
villa is decorated with fine Iranian
tiles and a maritime theme
013  Sea gulls gather at the “Bassa“
beach – shortly before Khasab – the
only sandy beach in Musandam
014  Omanis in their impeccable
white dishdashas gather on the
rock above “Bassa” beach
015  We park our LandCuriser at
the upper end of “Bassa” Beach
016  The gravel road to the viewpoint of
“Khor an-Najd” (inlet of Najd) winds through
a spectacular rock scenery. The bay is about
15 miles southeast of Khasab …..
017  ….. the view to “Khor an-Najd”
is just breathtaking …..
018  ..... and invites to linger and
to enjoy a picnic
019  From the viewpoint the track winds
through switchbacks down to the bay of
„Khor an-Najd“, where some fishing boats
bob up and down – a lovely spot to camp .....
020  ..... our LandCruiser looks like
an ant between the rock towers while
descending to the bay …..
021  ..... finally we move down the
mountain track and return to the tarmac
road that is about two miles ahead
022  The small acacia forest is a curiosity in
Musandam’s rugged mountain scenery, because
such a cluster is rare in this part of the world
023  This lovely acacia tree marks
the end of the road to Sall-Ala
024  Shade providing trees are treasured
by both: picnickers and goats
025  From the gravel road winding up to Jebel
al-Harim (or Jebel as-Sayh), the highest
mountain in Musandam (6’847 ft.), we enjoy
the panorama north-north-east over the rugged
mountain scenery with its geological formations
026  A lovely moment: On our way to Jebel
Harim we have a reencounter with Karsten
and his son Cedric. They are travelling with
a red Toyota LandCruiser from Switzerland.
We first met them in the UAE in Dubai
027  The higher we climb towards
Jebel Harim, the more impressive the
view over canyons and peaks gets
028  After the fertile Sayh Plateau with
its patchwork of fields and grazing
donkeys we make a break to enjoy
the spectacular scenery
029  The rocks with the hanging plants
and the stone shelter ruin along the
mountain track are a curiosity
030  Another switchback on
our steep climb to Jebel Harim
031  Looking back to the
fertile Sayh Plateau
032  The little hamlet as-Sayh sits at the edge
of the steep track that leads us to Jebel Harim
033  Wild, rugged and lonely:
The track to Jebel Harim
034  Our LandCruiser is driving
through a moon like landscape
towards the summit
035  On the peak of the 6’847 ft. high
Jebel Harim sits – besides a military
installation – a telecommunication
tower. It is not open to the public
036  Wrapped into a warm winter coat,
Liliana admires the fascinating mountain
scenery. At almost 6’500 ft. height,
temperatures can fall here at
night to freezing point
037  After the pass, the descent to
Wadi Bih starts
038  View towards south-south-west:
Still uncultivated patches of fields cover
not easily accessible small plateaus
039  An isolated small settlement
comes into view on our descent
to Wadi Bih
040  The track to Wadi Bih runs on
the mountain ridge and reveals on
both sides fantastic views over a
canyon and the river valley
041  One more stop to take in the
views before we climb another hill
042  The dry riverbed of Wadi Bih
unrolls below us. Viewing direction
upstream towards Ba’neh
043  Close to the point of our return at
Wadi Bih (the border crossing to the east
of the UAE – Fujairah – is only open for
Omanis and Emiratis). The mountain track,
which is climbing another pass to Dibba
at the UAE east coast, is visible in the
044  At each stop we discover
new rock patterns
045  Simply stunning: Looking back to the
“crossroads” in the dry river valley of Wadi
Bih, where the tracks to Ba’neh (upstream
to the left), to the Rawdah Bowl (slightly left)
and to the right towards Dibba (crossing
another pass - see pic 43) resp. towards Ras
al-Khaima (down the valley) branch off
046  Wonders of nature: Even between
these bare rocks plants are growing
047  ..... close-up view of the
pinkish blossoms
048  A thorny bush with yellow flowers
049  Our wild camping spot between
Wadi Bih and the mountain
pass of Jebel Harim
050  This is typically Oman: A lonely
acacia tree, a hamlet nestling at the foot
of a steep mountain slope (Khasab Valley)
051  A car driver waves and smiles:
Hospitality is legendary in Oman
052  A picnic on the rocks at “Bassa Beach“.
Today we try garlic cream, onion pickles
from Egypt and cucumbers from Syria
(both are horrendously salty) …..
053  ..... below us – on the sandy
beach – locals are pitching up
their tent for the weekend .....
054  ..... the setting sun transforms
the rocks opposite the beach in a
glowing golden light
055  2/5/2013 – Farewell to Musandam.
At the harbor the cruiser “Atlantica” of the
well-known Costa-Line is berthing .....
056  ..... next to it sits the new car ferry
of the NFC (National Ferries Company)
which will bring our LandCruiser and us
for OMR 40 (~US$ 100) to Shinas in
the “mainland” of Oman …..
057  ….. This is the corner
where our LandCruiser will spend
the next five hours on sea.
It is its 279th shipping trip
058  Two different worlds greet
at our good-byes: A traditional
Omani dhow …..
059  ..... and the cruiser carrying more
than 3’500 tourists that calls every week
at Khasab, coming from Dubai in the
UAE, and flooding this otherwise lovely
quiet exclave with partly insensitive tourists
060  On our voyage to Shinas, Musandam’s
distinctive rugged seashore is escorting us
for a long time. Herewith the second visit of
an exclave is ending again with a boat trip
– analog of the visit of Oecussi, the
exclave of Timor-Leste (East Timor)
More websites from Oman:
Oman 1999 - from mid-March to mid-April 1999
Oman 2013 – Part 2 - February 2013: Sohar - Muscat - Rustaq - Nizwa
Oman 2013 – Part 3 - March 2013: Sur - East Coast - Island of Masirah - Dhofar
Oman 2013 – Part 4 - March 2013: Salalah & Surroundings (Dhofar) - Nizwa
Oman 2013 – Part 5 - March 2013: Western Hajar Mountains
(Oman 2013 Part 6) - April 2013: Omani Madha Exclave in the UAE
More websites from the Middle East:
Fairytale Wedding in Dubai - United Arab Emirates - with our car from February 7th, to May 20th, 1999
Sharjah + Dubai: United Arab Emirates - without our vehicle from February 19th, to 27th, 2011
Sharjah/Dubai/1st Traveler's Festival/Emirates National Auto Museum - UAE with car Nov. 2012 to Jan. 2013 - part 1
Liwa - United Arab Emirates with our car in February 2013 - part 2
Al Ain, Eastcoast & Ras al Khaima - United Arab Emirates with our car in April 2013 - part 3
Welcome to Kuwait on March 3rd, 1996
Yemen car trip (from Oman to Saudi Arabia) - from May 16th, to June 15th, 1996
Sandstorm in Saudi Arabia on February 4th, 1999
Trip to Dubai in January and February 1999
Iran 2013 – Part 1: Ferry Port Bandar Abbas-Shiraz-Persepolis-Pasargad (between Persepolis and Yazd)
Iran 2013 – Part 2: Pasargad (excl.)-Yazd-Esfahan May 2013
Iran 2013 – Part 3: Esfahan (excl.)-Chelgerd-Hamadan-Sanandaj-Orumiyeh May 2013
Turkey 2013 Eastern Anatatolia - June 2013
Socotra - without our car from February 9th, to 19th, 2011:
Part 1: Socotra trip in Yemen (East) Hadibo - Dihamri - Arher Beach
Part 2: Socotra trip in Yemen (South) Homhil - Aomak Beach - Wadi Daerhu - Dicksam Plateau
Part 3: Socotra trip in Yemen (West) Qalansiya - Shouab Beach - Qadama Beach - Momi Plateau - Wadi Ayhaft