Last November I had two wonderful weeks in the Sultanate of Oman with my loved one. Time to finally show morepictures. And there I start with desert pictures from Wahiba Sands. If you have no premonition about Oman, you might suspect that much of the country looks like this. In fact, the Wahiba Sands desert (also Rimal Al Wahiba called) only roughly 12,000 square kilometers in size and not quite 4% of the country. It is therefore a rather small and manageable desert area. Therefore, it is very popular with tourists. Sure, we were there too.
Deserts are something special for us Northern Europeans because they are seldom experienced. And you have to experience it. A wonderful and at the same time hostile room in which dozen optimally adapted living beings eke out their existence almost invisibly. Many, many years ago, my sweetheart and I were in a desert for the last time: Sossusvlei in Namibia. This desert is almost three times the size and we were both very impressed. With this anticipation, we visited Wahiba Sands in the second half of our Oman vacation. And because it was only one night, it fits perfectly to show a small series of pictures here.
A visit to Wahiba Sands is fully organized in terms of tourism. On the main road from which the sandy slopes branch off into the desert camps, there is a gas station where red-faced whites wait for their guide and a super-friendly gas station attendant who brings the tires of your car to the correct tire pressure. He asked us which camp we were going to and then said that we didn’t need a tour guide for the trip there, because it would be signposted and only go straight ahead. It’s the closest resort anyway. 20 minutes later we drive behind a guide on sand for the first time at 80 kilometers an hour and laugh out loud when we discover a small signpost to the camp between a lot of sand. We’re Northern Europeans …
The rest of the day we prefer to leave the driving on the sandy slopes of Wahiba Sands to the professionals. Sunset in the dunes is on the program and we look forward to sandy pictures in the low sun. I uploaded a little video on YouTube to give you an impression of the landscape.
A wonderful evening – the photographic experience is somewhat clouded by the fact that the Bedouins park their cars in the most beautiful places. In addition, despite the low season, there are so many cars and people on the road that there are hardly any larger areas for typical photos of the dunes and unspoiled nature.
The evening is rounded off by delicious and varied food at large tables. So we get to know nice Omani from London who are also in Wahiba Sands for the first time. Later we enjoy the fantastic starry sky. When there is local folklore and Northern Europeans clap irregularly to the traditional sounds of traditionally dressed people – such as doctors, lawyers or architects – we go to bed early. After the disappointing evening, we quickly made the decision to try again early in the morning for a great dune experience. Since the sunrise is on the calendar for 6 o’clock, we hope for few people.
And we were not disappointed. This time we had the experience alone and without cars that we had wished for before we arrived. Even if I briefly cursed the decision to climb the first mountain of sand before breakfast. Walking with bare feet in the warm sand and sometimes breaking into the cold earth made up for the physical exertion. Desert is something special!
It’s a shame that we have to leave the camp in Wahiba Sands shortly after breakfast. But shortly after 11 a.m., even in November with moderate temperatures in Oman, it is so warm again that a car without air conditioning is unimaginable. This time we can make the return trip over the sandy slopes back to the main road on our own and are already looking forward to the friendly people at the gas station who bring our tires back to street pressure.