BLURB: Ulrike Lemmin-Woolfrey from Germany is a nomadic author who says the Sultanate is a magical country, so different from the other Middle Eastern countries. The Omanis are very welcoming and friendly, always keen to share their culture and traditions with expatriates, she says
The Rustaq Loop is Ulrike’s favourite, as it was the first trip she and her family did after moving to Muscat. She also loved the abandoned ruins of the deserted villages of Birkat Al Mauz
A freelance travel writer and a guidebook author who has visited over 90 countries says the Sultanate is ‘magical.’
Originally from Germany, Ulrike Lemmin-Woolfrey lived and worked in the UK, Qatar, UAE and Oman, and surprisingly calls herself nomadic.
The world interests her, the people, cultures and traditions having lived and worked in seven countries on three continents.
She admires the Sultanate for the friendliness and openness of its citizens towards foreigners and adherence to traditions and hospitality.
Ulrike, who lived in Al Azaiba for over a year in 2005 with her husband Ian and daughter Christina, specialises in writing about travel and expatriate lifestyle. She was a freelancer and had worked with most publications, magazines, and even copy writing for several government tourism books in Oman.
“I often think back of our years in Oman. It is such a magical country, and so different from the other Middle Eastern countries,” she recollects.
Having lived in three different countries on the Arabian Peninsula, what she loved about the Sultanate was the contact with the locals, not something that happens easily in the other countries. Throughout, the Omanis were welcoming and friendly, always keen to share their culture and traditions with expatriates.
“As an expatriate, I learned that our time in each country was fleeting, so we explored as much as we could, and spent weekends on the road, discovering the many wonderful locations around us. But I still haven’t seen enough, so will have to return for more sometime soon.”
As one who has extensive exposure to the lifestyle of expatriates, she evaluates that living in Oman was quiet and relaxed.
“Contrary to other places, where the cities are full of excitement, shops, events, it was more about the amazing countryside. Rather than shallow pursuits, such as shopping, our efforts went into driving around and exploring the natural beauty of the country and learning more about its history and culture.”
She elaborates that if she had a choice, she loves to spend time in every country in the world, learning and living among their culture, traditions, and history before settling down.
“But I believe that I will eventually return to Europe. There might be a toss-up between England, France, or Germany, or maybe somewhere else. But I am quite sure it will be Europe,” she confirms.
Ulrike recollects of her house right at the Al Azaiba beach along with their newly adopted puppy, Hexe.
She moved to Oman because of her husband’s work, and was one of the first countries they visited when they first lived in Qatar. We were quite enchanted with all its history, the coast, mountains, food, and the people. “My husband always said that Oman felt like home to him,” she mentions.
The Rustaq Loop is her favourite, as it was the first trip they did after moving to Muscat, but she also loved the abandoned ruins of the deserted villages of Birkat Al Mauz. “And then there is of course Muscat, dear to my heart and Muttrah is especially lovely,” she adds.
Ulrike has so far published over 1,000 articles, features and news items plus photographs in around 100 international publications, ranging from The Independent, CNN Travel, Fodor’s, The Telegraph, The LA Times and Four Seasons magazine to The Australian, and numerous inflight magazines.
Her book 'Moon Living Abroad in Australia' is a guide for would-like-to-be-expats considering a move to Australia, and her travel guides to Sydney and the Great Barrier Reef, and Spotlight Sydney, are for those eyeing a shorter visit to the country while trying to get the most of the locations.
Ulrike (Instagram: writearoundtheglobe) plans to write a book about Oman or on the Mideast expatriates if an opportunity arises in the future.