Tag Archives: travel

Beach by the Cliff

Salalah. Muscat Daily
This is a  tourist site in the Dhofar region of Oman.The Cliffs like this are abound in this cold region in what otherwise is a hot desert country in the GCC region.
Wadi Tiwi
Wadi Tiwi Along the Arabian Sea Oman(cliffhangercorner©photo)
Wadi Daykah Dam
Wadi Daykah is Oman’s most Popular Dam and a Popular Site [Cliffhanger©photo]

New 7th Wonder City

A colorful ceremony on Thursday night May 7,2015  formalized the status of Vigan City in Ilocos Sur, Phils. as one of the world’s New7Wonders Cities.

The inauguration was held at the St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral grounds, with a bronze plaque presented to the city’s officials by the New 7 Wonders Foundation.

Established in the 16th century, its architecture echoes the fusion of cultural elements from the Philippines, China and Europe, creating a city that is without equal in Asia.

ItalsodescribedVigan as “the best-preserved example of a planned Spanish colonial town in Asia. It is also a certified Heritage City in Asia.

New 7th Wonder City and a Heritage City in Asia.
New 7th Wonder City and a Heritage City in Asia.
Other than Vigan, the New7Wonders Cities are:
  • Beirut, Lebanon
  • Doha, Qatar
  • Durban, South Africa
  • Havana, Cuba
  • Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • La Paz, Bolivia
New 7th Wonder City
St. Paul Cathedral Vigan

A place to relax.It’s more than what we wished for.

PicMonkey Collage.alnadah

Escape becomes the order of the day: Resorts provide all the relaxation you need.

The hustle and bustle correlated to city living is one that you expect when moving from your quiet hometown.The stimulation of crowds and horrible traffic generate energy that challenges the human spirit.  It is a generally accepted notion that  the city dweller reflects the image of a moody, stressed and unfriendly person.   And you are no longer the countryman that  is  depicted   as calm, relaxed and friendly because you have moved to a city where you may have been lured by a lucrative job offer from a leading company.Take the time off! Experience something relaxing.That’s what we did by going into a spa resort in a town in Oman called Barka.A good 30-min ride from Muscat will take you to this forest look resort with a string of cottages lining up the edges of this countryside spa resort within a country that has a typical hot arabian desert temperature.The package of course included a massage to all guests from a well trained staff that gave us a truly soothing and  relaxing experience.While I am not saying that citylife is not good.It’s the opposite of course because modern society living is what city life is. Activities galore in the city but city life is more challenging and it carries a heavy price.Worst of all, the most expensive component of life in the city is the toll it takes on your body through stress. Stress is present with every waking moment in the city.  The multitudes of people, unstoppable traffic, rigid work schedules never let up. The air is filthy.  The carbon monoxide emitted by thousands of vehicles overwhelm what little green life remains to clean the air.  Brain and body are continuously bombarded by environmental pollutant that diminish the human spirit.  Opportunities to relax are few and short. Stress builds up. Quality of life declines.The city dweller looks forward to a day out of the city.   Escape becomes the order of the day. Each move to the outer boundaries of the urban environment makes life a little more peaceful.  The  move (vacation leave or permanent) to the country is the greatest move of all.Peaceful is the most succinct description of the country. The night is refreshingly quiet. Soft insect noises and the plaintive call of an owl or frog rule the stillness.Leaves are strewn all over the places. No heavy traffic, no sirens, no rush of the “madding crowd.” Life is simple and calming. The country offers advantages to the harried city dweller that can reduce stress, induce health, and reharges your body.

biking lanes2.jpg

Inside the Al Nahda Resort and Spa.The driveway network  for golf cart users, promenaders, joggers and bikers.Beautiful trees  abound—–Very homey atmosphere.Birds are chirping nearby and the smell is naturely fresh. Continue reading A place to relax.It’s more than what we wished for.

Camels Revisited-Part II

The racetrack built within the  farm area.
The racetrack built within the farm area.

T’was a very memorable eid holiday this year for our entourage who motored  inland towards an arid atmosphere in the Batinah region of Oman to try something different — a deviation from the normal , sightseeing or road travel that we are used to doing most of the time and this time we wanted to get into action.Riding— at the expense of what used to be man’s primary mode of transport in the desert – the gangly cud-chewer and unpredictably  behaving camel.While almost everyone everywhere is acquainted with horseback riding, I guess the other way around is true for camel riding, probably because the camels do thrive in the hot desert sun in the arabian peninsula to as far as the northern middle east countries and not so much on the colder environments around the globe.Camels sad to say,are generally reputed to be bad-tempered and stubborn animals but that doesn’t hold true in reality.The camel farm that we visited,huge as it was, as far as the eye can see enabled us to experience how it was to be in touch and understand more about the behaviour of this slow-paced moving ruminants at 5 kph/hr strides.In reality they tend to be good- tempered,very intelligent and very patient.Each one of us were treated to a first class display of patience by the animals.So patient…they wouldn”t stand until riders are fully mounted.The constant moaning and barking sound they create when they’re loaded up and have to rise to their strong knees and wide feet [to prevent them from sinking in the sand] is like the grunting  and heavy breathing of a weight-lifter in action, not a sign of refusal at having to do some work.Staying on a little longer and touring the place with the very warm and hospitable owner( a Sheik),chatting and  interviewing the people maintaining the farm,doing our own baby-feeding by extending grass to their big mouths [some refused our extended arms] and giving them water to drink.As we readied for home we were thinking about our next camel riding schedule in some future time.Camels! Be ready next time we’re coming back!

The camel farm stretches over a wide area inland in an arid environment and tended  by foreign veterinarians and local herdsmen.
The camel farm stretches over a wide area inland in an arid environment and tended by foreign veterinarians and local herdsmen.
The camel continuously growls and grows impatient as the next rider who happens to be my daughter is scared to death to mount.
The camel continuously growls and grows impatient as the next rider who happens to be my daughter is scared to death to mount.

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Sink Holes are for real and they’re stunning.

Has anyone of you ever heard of (or encountered) a Sink Hole? Sorry but I didn’t even know it ever existed. With the long Eid weekend holidays at this time of the year giving as a perfect time to relax or unwind,my friend, Ted bragged  me about a must-see sink hole which I shrugged [it off] as just a waste of time going there.Until it became obvious that what my very own eyes saw was a stunning view of the world’s most stunning sinkhole. In shape, it seemed like a cavernous limestone bowl and it’s so beautiful it has become a tourist attraction.A sinkhole, which can be properly termed also as a sink, snake hole, swallow hole, swallet, doline, or cenote, is a natural depression or hole in the Earth’s surface caused by Karst processes — the chemical dissolution of carbonate rocks.A geologist or scientist would we the perfect someone to explain this subject. How big are sinkholes? Mind you, sinkholes may vary in size from 1 to 600 metres (3.3 to 2,000 ft) both in diameter and depth, and vary in form from soil-lined bowls to bedrock-edged chasms. Sinkholes may be formed gradually or abruptly, and can be found everywhere around the globe.It is worth mentioning that sinkholes sometimes grab headlines for swallowing cars, houses and occasionally whole streets.
However amazing as it is, this sinkhole in Oman is so stunning it has been turned into a tourist attraction.While similar holes engulf residential streets or open up in front of despairing home owners, the beautiful limestone hollow in Bimmah sinkhole has long been attracting tourists taking countless photos for FB or other purposes and taking a refreshing dip.

We had just hied off at the Wadi Dayqa Dam (to be blogged later) and next thing was… we found ourselves pondering about the beautiful sight that was not included in our original itinerary——- at this very intriguing place at Dibab Lake Park.Wheww…Bimmah Sink Hole.Beautiful as it is, water is bluish, we saw a lot of people swimming on it,though it is quite salty just like the seawater or even saltier.

If you are wondering how deep this sinkhole is, the locals say it is a good 20m deep at its lowest point.Thank goodness, our time was not wasted to visit this sink hole located somewhere along the coastal road going to Sur.What’s more,its within walking distance from the parking lot. Not really tiring.There are restrooms/shower rooms provided for those who want to take a swim at the Dibab Lake Park.