Friday, March 24, 2023 | Ramadan 1, 1444 H
clear sky
23°C / 23°C

The long drive to Hasik reveals an untapped paradise

The recent long holiday meant a great opportunity to see new places. For our case, it meant going on a long drive eyeing the Ash Shuwamiyyah— Hasik area as our places of interest for exploration.

Nothing much has been written about these places except that great rock formations can be found in the area. Located about 921km from Muscat through the Samail tunnel towards the Adam-Thumrait road and cutting through Al Jazer, we'd been warned that the drive will be long and unpleasant but it was an adventure that has been long overdue.

With Ahmed al Jaabri of Oman Outdoor Adventure mapping the route, we departed Muscat on Friday morning.

The first five hours of the drive was uneventful. We were pleasantly surprised by some areas we passed through experiencing fog near the desert and by the time we reached Al Jazer, the weather has become cooler cementing what we've already known that the end of November is the best time to do desert adventures and exploring some far corners of Oman.

When we reached Ash Shuwamiyyah, we found a coastal village of nearly 70 homes, some of them in bad, withered condition. There were a few hole-in-the-wall restaurants and small shops selling different home items but what was most impressive were the well-paved roads that opened into some of the most amazing beaches one would find in Oman.

We decided to stop by Shuwwamiyyah to visit the famed Smurf or Star Wars houses located nearly 10km from the town proper. These houses had seen better days. We discovered that it was a failed project and as a result, they were vandalized and neglected that in a few more years, they will be nothing more but crumbling ruins which is a complete shame as there is no decent inn or place to stay in the area.

Overall, however, seeing the Smurf houses still standing, stripped of all modern comfort, it was still a nice sight to behold and definitely, very Instagrammable.

From Ash Shuwwamiyyah, we took the road leading into the mountains. After another hour of drive, the road led deeper and deeper into the mountains and we eventually emerge at a viewpoint where from the top, the scenic view will remind you of the breathtaking beauty of Jabal Sham's Grand Canyon.

This Grand Canyon of the South can be viewed even without needing to go for a hike. From this viewpoint, the world opened up into this wild array of different peaks each demanding to be recognized and appreciated for their sheer beauty.

Another nearly an hour drive led us to Khor Nakheel and this is where I was surprisingly astonished. Before us was a garden filled with date palms in the middle of which was a khor that looks like a river flowing towards the sea. The water was not only emerald green, but it was also calm and cool that without a doubt, I would claim it as one of Oman's best spots for kayaking (if only it's easy to bring a kayak to this part of the Sultanate.)

Barely four kilometres long, the khor is hidden in the heart of barren mountains the greenery betraying the beauty of this hidden paradise. I mentioned to my companions that it reminded me greatly of some amazing rivers that flow between the karst mountains in Vietnam and this place alone was worth the nearly 9 hours drive we drove from Muscat.

For those who haven't been to Hasik yet, what you should understand is that while the coastal roads from Qurriyat to Sur might already have impressed you, the one in Hasik will definitely make you mad that you haven't discovered it soon enough.

If there is one coastal road you have to take, it's definitely the one in Hasik and a stop at one of the strangest waterfalls on the side of the road will be like a cherry on top of your travel cake.

The long weekend allowed us to explore remote beaches, and while we are all celebrating the spectacular beauty of Barr al Hikman and Al Khaluf, I would say that the beauty of the Ash Shuwwamiyyah and Hasik beaches will do magic for your beach-aching heart.

Without a doubt, the trip from Muscat to Hasik is long, painful and tiring but some hidden beauty will definitely be worth your sacrifices.

The next time you find yourself in Salalah for khareef or for a leisurely visit, Hasik is just barely two hours away. I urge you to take a detour towards this seldom visited place and thank me later when you discover the same hidden paradise we visited. You're welcome.


For details about this trip and tour guide needs, you can DM Ahmed Al Jaabri on Instagram @ahmed_aljaabri

arrow up
home icon