Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Off-Road: Daymaniyat Island

You can't get more off-road than travelling by sea right? Well that is what we did this weekend, visiting Daymaniyat Island, a site better known for diving.

Diving wasn't on the agenda on this occasion (although I am starting diving certification course next weekend!) Instead we wanted to chill and enjoy the sunshine. 

We met at Seeb port at 8.30am, and set sail on a traditional dhow boat at about 9am. The boat benefits from an air conditioned lower deck, and an upper deck that is part outdoors and part indoors so you can get in and out of the heat as you wish. I parked myself in the majlis and crossed my fingers that my seasickness wouldn't kick in, but luckily the sea was very calm and after about 90 minutes we arrived at the island.

Being a nature reserve/protected site the boat had to anchor itself a little away from the island and we were then taken over in batches in a smaller boat and left to enjoy ourselves. The crowd was made up of friends of friends so the atmosphere was friendly and relaxed; there was music, dancing, and a generally just a happy vibe.

I failed a little on the blogging front: for fear of my camera ending up at the bottom of the sea I left it on the boat. The island is beautiful though, and I would urge you to plan a trip yourself. On some parts of the island you might be lucky enough to see a bit of wildlife. On this occasion, I spied crabs -- a lot of them, huge ones. The sand is a little odd, on the most part it is fine, soft sand, but there are these larger rocks and shells determined to ruin your day when you accidently step on them or kick them, which I did, and I ended up with a purple toe. As inviting as the water looked, it was ice cold, I'm not sure if it is like this all year round, and it took me two attempts before I finally plucked up the courage to get in properly.

After the dhow crew managed to lure us all off the island and back onto the boat we enjoyed a lunch of rice, meat and fish, and headed back to Muscat in time for dusk.

Since we were invited along as friends of friends I have no idea how you would go about organising a private trip yourself. Google is your friend though. I know that there are trips that can be organised as part of a tour and again, ask Google for options. I do know that The Phoenix Group is arranging a trip in early April so if you are a member do get in touch with them, I'm sure you will enjoy it.