The Frustrations & Rewards of Getting Lost in Oman

Has anyone been to “Kbaikab Graveyard & Al Jayla Village” on Highway 17 between Quriyat and Sur along the eastern coast?!  I TRIED getting there but to no avail!  I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to directions and maps but the signs in Oman don’t always help!

The brown tourist sign for Kbaikab Graveyard and Jayla Village  (most tourist site signs are brown in Oman) seems to point towards the ocean and then there’s a sign (seen above) pointing in the opposite direction towards the mountains for “Qur’ran”.  Now I’ve been lost trying to get to Qur’ran before. You have to go up a steep, dangerous road which seems unfit for travel and the last time I tried, my car overheated and I had to turn around so I was pretty sure it wasn’t that way.  But as I confidently drove towards the ocean, keeping my eyes out for some ancient graveyard or some kind of landmark, the road started getting worse and worse till it got to this point:

To say that the road was rough is quite an understatement!  I couldn’t imagine driving this road without a 4X4.  In fact, I couldn’t imagine what I was doing on it even though I was in a 4X4!  When the road starting look like what you see in the pic above, I could imagine Gandalf’s voice screaming, “YOU SHALL NOT PASS!  It’s often in times like this when I’m lost beyond belief that I find the most incredible spots.  (Ain’t life like that!)  This was the scene awaiting me past the rough road:

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9 responses to “The Frustrations & Rewards of Getting Lost in Oman

  1. That is a fabulous piece of exploring! Would you be able to find it again? I am doing a blog on living in Oman too if you want to check it out.

  2. 3 shades of water in one photo. Epic 🙂

  3. Jenny,
    Yes, I would be able to find it again. (I’d just head straight for the beach at Qur’ran). I did in fact check out your blog and I really love the way you write. I have added you as a link on my “blogroll” and even did a small blogpost on your blog if you don’t mind. Keep up the great work & thanks for visiting! 🙂

    Kapil,
    Awesome water, huh?! 🙂 If only I had brought my swimming trunks!

  4. Looking forward to our own stay in Oman in August, I hope we won’t get lost then. I have a huge problem in deciding what places we may visit during the 18 days we will be there. There is so much, but the time seems not long enough.

    I visited an exhibition of incentive companies here in Germany last week and also some Omani hotels and companies have been there, including the Omani ministry of tourism. I had wonderful talks with Omani businessmen and got a bunch of brochures with great trips worked out. I wonder what you will recommend me to do (I hope you will…). In my mind I have the following, hopefully possible by even a small rented car, since 4WD is too expensive:
    – Muscat – Sur – Ras al Hadd or Ras al Jinz via Tiwi, then further down to Al Askharah and then again up on the other side of the Al hajar mountains via Al Mintarib and Al Qabil to Muscat (possibly also seeing Wadi Bani Khalid and Sharquiya Sands from one edge directly from the Oasis Al Hawiyah).

    The question is in how many days it is realistic to make this round trip?

    – A second option is to drive to Jabal Akhdar, but there I read that this is only possible by 4 WD car.

    – A third option is visiting Musandam/Khasab, which I think is most reasonable by plane, I find prices like 160 RO for 4 persons for a return flight.

    – A fourth option is visiting Salalah for some days, but here the problem is the huge distance, and flying is way to expensive there. So only the bus or rented car remains…

    – A fifth option is to visit Dubay for one day, which our host proposed us.

    Clearly, I would like to do all of this, but also I can imagine that it might be too much. Even do not know how it will be in the end of Ramadan during the EID festival, will it even be possible to go anywhere during these days? Or how will it be?

    – Also I already have a couple of invitations to pass by them when being in Muscat, by some hotel stands and companies visited during the exhibition in Frankfurt, Al Bustan Hotel, Shangri La, Mark Tours, some other trip organizers from Muscat….

    And finally we also want to visit a Christian church when in Oman, swimming, relaxing…

    Not easy to decide, what approach would you recommend me to take?

  5. I think the first option sounds great! I have no idea how many days it would take you as I haven’t been to any of those places you mentioned after Tiwi! (Hopefully someone reading this who has traveled this route will let you know!)
    Musandam is also a great option. I haven’t been there yet but here it’s a must see in Oman! Somday, God willing!
    Salalah is another great option but you have to watch how many kilometers you use as I think there’s a 250km limit/day and the extra kilos can count a pretty penny. Some rental cars disregard this “extra kilometre rule”. If so, then renting a car and staying at a reasonable priced place in Salalah would be a great idea. I LOVED my times in Salalah!
    You should be fine to go to most places in Ramadan, I think. You just have to respect their customs but not eating or drinking openly in public.
    I think you should have some solid ideas of what you really want to do but also leave some room for flexibility while here. I’ll be here after August 10th so I’ll just email you my cell phone number, Berthold, in case there are any questions/problems you might have. 2 more months to go! 🙂

  6. Have been to the Kbaikab tombs many times on day trips, indeed not that easy to find as first you go up the mountain (looks like you went to sea), then you need to follow the road and turn into the village (presumably Qur’ran) and follow the track up the wadi through the village, I think it takes about 2 hrs from Sur to find the tombs. They are quite amazing, even more so that they are not a World Heritage Site like bat, some quite tall impressive ones up there and magnificent views of valleys, at 1800m asl.

    • Scott,
      WOW! I finally get some info on this spot. Thanks a LOT for the info! Looking forward to making this trip when I can!

  7. Hi Andy,
    Very interesting blog you have. Well done
    Do you perhaps have GPS coordinates to this nice beach?
    Thank you

    • Hi Henry,
      Thanks! Unfortunately, I don’t have GPS coordinates to this nice beach. Sorry! Just follow the directions from the post and you should be good to go! 🙂

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