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Bidiya Desert Festival kicks off

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BIDIYAH: The Desert Adventures Festival in Al Sharqiyah sands in the Wilyat of Bidiya kicked off on Sunday.

Organized by the Ministry of Heritage and Tourism in cooperation with the office of the governor of North Al Sharqiyah and some government departments, the event will run until February 3.

The opening ceremony was presided over by Shaikh Ali bin Ahmed al Shamsi, Governor of North Sharqiyah. It is the first such festival in the Sultanate of Oman and aims to stir winter tourism particularly in the Wilayat of Bidiya which is famous for its soft golden sands.

The festival is part of the Ministry of Heritage and Tourism’s strive to encourage collective and individual initiatives aimed at boosting economic and tourist activities by employing the unique potentials of Bidiya.

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The festival also aims to increase hotel occupancy rates and encourage the competition in desert adventures and other sporting activities such as car races, balloon rides, paragliding and laser shows and camel rides through the desert and other entertainment programmes that suit the taste of children and families.

Activities are held in the morning and evening periods throughout the period of the festival.

Following the official opening the activities of the first day began. The governor of North Al Sharqiyah took a tour around the venue and inaugurated the small and medium enterprises exhibition.

Day one activities included adventure tourism exhibition, sand skiing, an handicrafts exhibition, Omani heritage and environment corner, theatrical shows, children’s competitions, youth and women’s competitions, a marathon, meditation sessions on the sand, skiing competitions, and varied games.

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