A holiday of exploration

What a week it was for citizens, expats and visitors alike. While some went camping, some hit the beach during the National Day holidays. Many simply preferred to “catch up” with the Super Moon from the comfort of their home.
For Deserti Robin, it was the call from Wakan. “It was great fun. Wakan is a fantastic place that is worth visiting. But you need just confidence to drive on that road,” said Robin.
The extended weekend saw 2017’s first and last Super Moon. Looking through her balcony. Natalie Sanders was inspired to rush for the camera to capture the moment.
“I knew there was going to be a Super Moon, but I was surprised at how beautiful and clear it was. I’ve been living in Oman for eight months and I am amazed by the beauty of this country. Such a wonderful place,” said Natalie.
Exploring Oman
For Shahrukh Zalam, photography is a passion. The holiday was the best opportunity. He took off with his wife and friends, and captured the places they explored together on his camera.
“The weather was the best part. As I love photography, I try to my best to travel during free time. I have been in Oman for over 10 years now. The drive on Oman roads is amazing.”
It was just eight degrees Celsius on Jabal Shams. He found it a “delight to watch the sunset and the blueness of the sky at night”, which he could capture with a long exposure shot.
“This is moonlight behind the tree,” said Shahrukh, showing the picture of a tree on Jabal Shams.
“We had BBQ and lit a bonfire to keep ourselves warm. We stayed overnight to capture the night sky as well as watch the sunrise.”
They were “captivated by the sunset” on the way to Ashkara beach. Wadi Bani Khalid, which was teeming with people, continued to enthrall the visitors. “I felt the whole of Oman was there.”
Route 17 to Pebble Beach
Many holidaymakers headed towards Sur in Al Sharqiyah Governorate. On either side of the road were families or groups of friends sitting under the shade of trees, having lunch or just chatting.
“We headed to the sink hole first and then the Pebble Beach. It took us one hour and 45 minutes from Muscat, driving through Amerat,” said Amar Kumar.
Hundreds of visitors visited the Hawiyat Najm Park or the Sink Hole Park during the weekend.
“I have been to the sink hole at least 10 times. The park is a delight for visitors because this is where families can relax and have food while kids play.”
There are steps that take visitors down to the sink hole with hand railings on both sides. But many prefer to dive into the natural pool that has a collection of tiny fish. Some preferred to drop a stone into the pool first, get an idea about the depth and then jump in.
The debate, however, continued: it is a natural phenomenon or a meteorite caused it? “If it was a meteorite, then where did it go?” a teenager was found asking his parents.
The Pebble Beach, which is nearby, is on the way to Wadi Shab. It saw all types of vehicles — from hatchbacks to 4x4s. One could see families, with kids in tow, walking up to the beach as well as playing with pebbles in different shapes and colours.
Waves were rough, just as the Met Office had predicted. It had no effect on the visitors. They were busy laughing or chatting, or enjoying the sight of pebbles, cliffs and the waves.
Water was once again the star attraction on Monday night at Muttrah Seafront which saw high waves splashing the footpath much to the delight of the pedestrians.

Lakshmi Kothaneth