Deserts calling

Muscat: The tourist camp operators have completed their preparations to welcome the winter tourist season, which starts on October 1 and lasts until April 2019. Officials at the Ministry of Tourism and Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OCCI) in the Governorate of North Al Sharqiyah and camp operators expressed their optimism that the season will be well received by tourists from inside and outside the Sultanate. The winter season attracts tourists who prefer camping to enjoy life in the desert. Rimal Al Sharqiya, which is 190 km away from the Governorate of Muscat, is one of the most popular destinations for adventure lovers, horse and camel riders.
The Ministry of Tourism seeks to highlight the desert safari by encouraging the establishment of tourist camps. Talal bin Khalfan al Shuaibi, Director of Tourism Department in the Governorate of North Al Sharqiyah, said that there are 25 hotels and 42 tour operators in the governorate. He said that the governorate is witnessing the implementation of a number of projects including two hotel apartments, two hotels, four hotels in Ibra, and a hotel, three tourist camps and a hostel project in the Wilayat of Bidiya. He pointed out that the winter tourist season in Rimal Al Sharqiya is an opportunity for small and medium enterprises by offering their services and products to tourists coming to the area for hiking and sand dune trekking. He added that the winter tourist season will enable local communities and the neighbouring wilayats to market their local products.
Salah bin Salim al Hajri, OCCI Branch Board member in the Governorate of North Al Sharqiyah, Head of the Tourism Committee in the branch, said that the committee played a major role as a link between tour operators and government institutions and has organised seminars on the importance of the tourism sector and heritage and cultural potential of North Al Sharqiyah.
Ali bin Salim al Hajri, owner of the Tourist Desert Safari Camp in Bidiya, said that the camp management has prepared early for the winter season by improving all the facilities in the camp and offering new adventure and fun programmes. He said that all the camp owners in the Sultanate in general and in Bidiya in particular have prepared for the season. “The camp allows visitors from all over the world to learn about the experience of Omani hospitality and cultural diversity and offers many services through its activities, rooms and surroundings, as well as easy booking via the company’s website,” said Mohammed bin Abdullah al Khunji, owner of Desert Nights Camp. — ONA