Yemen – Socotra Island 8 days

Middle East
|
8
days | 3 - 10 people in a group
tour description

nature, culture, sightseeing

We would like to invite you to the amazing island of Socotra. Belonging to Yemen unique island is a place where you can see the unusual endemic flora and fauna up to close.

In addition, the attraction of the island will be landscapes, rock formation as well as relaxation on the most beautiful beaches. We will also do our best to present to the travellers the life history and culture of the inhabitants. Despite the unstable and often tragic history of Yemen, trips to Socotra are possible and safe.

itinerary

Morning arrival to Hadibo, transfer to the hotel. After lunch we will visit Ayhaft Canyon National Park where we can observe for first time a variety of famous endemic plants like dessert rose (adenium obessum), tamarind tree (tamarindus indica) or cucumber tree (dendrosicyos socotranus). Moreover, we will see a variety of birds such as Socotra sparrow, Socotra sunbird and both Socotra and Somali starlings. Overnight stay in a hotel in Hadibo

L.D.

After breakfast we will go to Dixam Plateau. We will stop at Shebahon viewpoint which is located 700 m above sea level. The entire area is famous for numerous species of Socotra endemic plants, such as the dragon’s blood tree (dracena cinnabari). From the viewpoint we will also see magnificent view of Dirhur Canyon. This canyon is famous for its breathtaking landscape and extraordinary beautiful rock formations. Later on we will go to Firmhim Natural Reserve – the best preserved dragon’s blood tree forest. After lunch we will go down to Wadi Dirhur. There we will go for a walk to the natural freshwater pools where we can swim. Overnight stay in a hotel in Hadibo

B.L.D.

After early breakfast we will explore the western part of Socotra. First place that we will visit will be Qalansiya, a traditional fishing village. From there we will make boat trip to Shuaab. During this boat ride  we may see spinner dolphins and interesting rock formations. We will have time to swim, relax and enjoy this pristine place with its crystal clear water and white sand beach. After coming back to Qalansiya we will go first to the viewpoint of Detwah Lagoon that is a marine protected area renowned for its magical landscapes. Later on we will enjoy swimming in the crystal waters of the lagoon or its pools and relax on its paradise white sand beach. Overnight stay in a hotel in Hadibo

B.L.D.

After breakfast will go towards Momi Plateau. Afterwards we will reach Homhil Nature Reserve that is home to many species of the Socotri endemic plants such as frankincense tree, desert rose and dragon blood tree. There we will follow the trail along the dry river bed that will take us to an amazing viewpoint with a natural infinity pool overlooking the Arabian Sea. Time to relax in the pool and later on will go trekking down along Wadi Shifa that will takes us around 2 hours. Transfer to Dihammri Nature Reserve where we can swim and snorkel in the marine protected area that is home for dozen of species of marine life and it is one of best coral reef areas on the archipelago. You will have a chance to swim and snorkel, enjoy coral reef, colorful fish and turtles. Overnight in a hotel in Hadibo.

B. L. D.

After breakfast will head south towards the Indian Ocean. We drive along Wadi Defarhu where we can spot traditional villages, date palms and natural freshwater pools at the bottom of the valley as well as desert rose trees clinging on the canyon walls. Afterwards we will visit the picturesque sand dunes of Hayf and Zahek villages that have been formed by the seasonal winds. Later on we will reach Amomak Reserve and the most beautiful beach of the Indian Ocean in Socotra. Time to relax on the beach or swim in the crystal clear water of the ocean. Next we will visit Digub Cave known for stalactites, stalagmites and unique water reservoirs. Overnight in a hotel in Hadibo.

B. L. D.

After an early breakfast we will go to Terbak village to visit Hoq Cave known as well as Treasure Cave. During archaeological research the oldest traces of settlement on the island were found there. In addition, there were discovered wooden tablets in Aramaic dating back to 258 AD – the time the island was inhabited by Christians. We will go on an 1.5 hour hike up to the cave entrance and spend 1 hour inside. This largest cave on the island is 3.2 km deep. The cave is also famous for its the unique dripstone forms,  stalagmites and stalactites and water reservoirs. Afterwards we will go to Archer where there is a beautiful long beach and the highest dunes on the island. Time for a swim in the sea and relax on Arher beach. Next we will go to the eastern end of the island to Ras Erisel – the meeting point of the the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. Overnight at a hotel in Hadibo.

B. L. D.

After breakfast we will go the Hajhir Mountains where we may walk and enjoy the landscapes and local flora. In the afternoon we will go to Delisha Beach known for its white sand and numerous species of crabs (or Haulef Beach). Overnight stay in a hotel in Hadibo.

B. L. D.

Transfer to the airport and departure from Socotra

B.

Practical information

  • the length of the tour : 8 days in  Yemeni island of Socotra;
  • start of the trip: Abu Dhabi airport United Arab Emirates;
  • end of the trip: Abu Dhabi airport United Arab Emirates;
  • the highlights of this expedition The main attractions of the trip will be unique nature, especially endemic flora. In addition, one of the most important attractions of the trip will also be inanimate nature such as rock formations, caves and mountain landscapes. In addition to geological and natural attractions, an extremely important and interesting element of the trip is a close encounter with the culture and traditions of the inhabitants of this unique island, which is Sootra. The tour will be an expedition to one of the regions of the world rarely visited by tourists.

Because of the special nature of the visited places and of the expedition features, the travellers are required to be physically and mentally fit.

Accommodation is planned in hotels and campsites where accommodation will be provided in permanently installed tents We carry out journeys during the expedition with off-road vehicles with 4×4 drive The program includes attractions related to bathing and cruises by motor boats. The trip program has been arranged in such a way as to enable the best possible exploration of places outside the mass tourism routes, while maintaining the safety and comfort standards of the participants. It should be remembered that the vast majority of the island is inhabited by followers of Sunni Islam, so one should remember about the specific character and cultural differences.

Depending on the political situation, the length of the tour and the order of visited places may change. In a situation of a serious threat to travellers’ safety, the tour may be cancelled. We will keep you updated as to whether the expedition is possible.

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the planned end of the tour.

Before departure, it is necessary to obtain a Yemeni tourist visa dedicated to the island of Socotra. The cost and visa procedures are included in the price of the trip

Due to the fact that the trip starts in Abu Dhabi – United Arab Emirates. It is necessary to check if the person traveling with the given passport does not need to additionally obtain a UAE visa. There is no such obligation for most UK and EU citizens

Furthermore, you should take with you for the trip a photocopy of your passport (the photo page) and an additional ID document.

  • Before departure, we recommend a consultation with a family physician and a tropical medicine specialist.
  • Vaccination against yellow fever, tetanus, diphtheria, viral hepatitis A and B, meningococci and typhus is recommended.
  • The risk of Malaria is negligible
  • There is a risk of dengue and tuberculosis at the places planned to be visited during the trip.
  • We recommend visiting https://travelhealthpro.org.uk/countries.
  • During our expedition, we will drink only bottled water. You should avoid ice in your beverages and eating raw or undercooked foods. Only private medical care exists in Cameroon and Central African Republic, and this only in the capitals.
  • Because of difficult travelling and accommodation conditions and particularities of the country, good general health and physical fitness are necessary. Furthermore, your patience will definitely be tested and you should prepare for hardships of long journeys, lassitude and discomfort.
  • Please take with you a first aid kit and a sufficient supply of your regular (prescription) medicines, if any. Some useful contents of the first aid kit:
  • insect repellents – absolutely necessary
  • malaria prophylaxis
  • high sun protection cream (recommended SPF 50)
  • disinfectants, wound dressing materials
  • analgesics and antipyretics
  • antibiotics, as a precaution
  • anti-diarrhoeals, electrolytes and vitamins

Sokora Island is a very safe and peaceful place. Despite the ongoing civil war in Yemen, there is no conflict or terrorist threat on the island. The crime rate is very low. In the event of a serious threat, the trip may be canceled or shortened to a version that allows for the safe implementation of the trip.

Owing to the good relations we have with local contractors, we keep following the news to be aware of any potential threats and safety risks. We also recommend you to read the latest news on the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website:

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

During the tour, please take seriously the instructions of our contractors, guides and tour leader.

It is very important to respect local customs and abide by local laws and regulations. You will receive the necessary information on an on-going-basis from your local guides and the tour leader.

The official currency in Yemen is the Yemeni Rial. Money exchange is possible at the airport and at street exchange offices in Hadibu City. Using payment cards is not always possible. We have the best exchange rate when exchanging US Dollars and Euros. It’s important that dollars are printed after 2006.

For current foreign exchange rates see www.xe.com or install xe.com on your phone.

On the Yemeni island of Socotra, the inhabitants speak the local dialect of the Arabic language, which is significantly different from the classical Arabic language. In the case of a group tour, the tour leader will speak English or French. For self-guided tours, you must speak English or French.

Socotra Island is home to a distinct ethnic group from the rest of Yemen. The majority of the inhabitants are followers of Sunni Islam. Because of cultural considerations and for safety reasons, it is advisable to learn about the recommended dress code. Women are not required to wear headscarves at public places. However, this is necessary while visiting mosques. Clothes that reveal too much flesh are frowned upon – both in men and women. There are no such restrictions in national parks and beaches. You can freely bathe in beachwear

It is very important to respect local customs and abide by local laws. You will receive the relevant information from your local guide or the tour leader.

The tour dates are proposed in periods of the best possible weather conditions at the sites included in the itinerary. The best time for expeditions to Socotra is the period between from February  to the end of May. Moreover good time for travel is aslo in October and November  Temperatures exceed +30°C during the day and +20°C at night. Rainfalls are possible. Major problems are low quality of roads, dust in the air in the dry season and mud after rainfalls.

For detailed information see https://www.meteoblue.com/en.

Most cities and towns have mobile coverage. Purchasing a local sim card is possible, but complicated. Before the trip, we recommend that each participant contact their mobile operator whether they have a signed contract with operators in Yemen and what are the prices of calls and text messages in roming. To avoid any unpleasant surprises, it is recommended to turn off data transmission over the cellular network.Wi-Fi is available only at certain accommodation sites and in a handful of restaurants.

  • It is possible to buy a sim card with an internet package, but it does not guarantee good and quick access to the internet
  • Additionally, we recommend taking a capacious power bank, solar charger or car charger. In national parks and in the course of car rides, it will be possible to charge electronic equipment only from vehicle power supplies.
  • Power sockets of type A, G, D, and C. Voltage 230 V, frequency 50 Hz.

For climatic and cultural reasons, loose garments will be most appropriate: long trousers, long skirts, long-sleeved shirts, which can be easily washed and will quickly dry. The most comfortable footwear for the tour will be lightweight boots. Palladium brand boots are recommended. Wearing open sandals is possible. Light hiking boots may prove useful.

The following are worth taking:

  • aluminium sleeping pad or light self-inflating mat and thin summer sleeping bag; we provide a mattress during the trip but taking your own pad or mat will improve your sleeping comfort
  • sachet for documents and money
  • lightweight sleeping bag
  • wet wipes for body cleaning and antibacterial gels
  • polar fleece jacket or warmer blouse, especially useful at evening and night times in northern areas of Pakistan
  • head cover and sunglasses – mandatory, the sun is no joke!
  • comfortable summer clothes, useful during practically the whole trip
  • light T-shirts/shirts
  • useful odds and ends: torch, Swiss Army knife, sewing kit (usually is not needed but is not heavy and does not take much place), chargers, mug (for special occasions); inflatable neck pillow, useful on the plane and during car rides; small wallet for the local currency; books to pass the time on flights and car rides

Price

Price depends on number of participants. Please refer to list below:

  • £ 4390  p/p  – group of 3
  • £ 3990  p/p  – group of 4
  • £ 3690  p/p  – group of 5
  • £ 3490 p/p  – group of 6
  • £ 3390  p/p  – group of 7
  • £ 3290  p/p  – group of 8
  • £ 3190  p/p  – group of 9 – 10
Price includes

Costs of flight from Abu Dhabi  United Arab Emirates to Socotra

Yemeni tourist visa dedicated to the island of Socotra

During the expedition, we will travel by minibuses and off-road vehicles. Depending on the daily agenda in the itinerary and the current situation as regards traveller safety, we will spend 4 to 10 hours travelling every day.The speed and transfer times depend on the road surface conditions, terrain characteristics and number and length of stops.

We are not able to guarantee a uniform accommodation standard at each of the planned sites during the stay in Socotra. Our priorities are your comfort, appropriate location, character of the site and historical, cultural and natural values. We always place emphasis on the support of local community when selecting the sites for our accommodation. In general, rooms will be assigned on the assumption of two people sharing a twin room (rooms with individual bathrooms). The surcharges for single rooms are quoted in the “Price” section.

  • During the expedition, accommodation is planned for the hotel in Habibu only. hotels roughly equivalent to the standard of a 3 * Hotel

Meals are included in the tour price, as specified in the itinerary. B – breakfast, L – lunch, D – dinner. Breakfasts most often will be in hotels and accommodation places. Lunch and dinner in local restaurants and campsites prepared by the Yemeni expedition staff. Cuisine Dishes that can be tasted on the island are as varied as the culture and history of Socotra.

For information about the local costs of living see https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/.

Services of a tour guide,

All entrance fees and permits to visit national parks and reserves in the itinerary

The price includes the cost of tips and porters’ fees.

Trip preparation, visa mediation, the invitation necessary to obtain a visa

Price does not include

Abu Dhabi  United Arab Emirates

Costs of flight tickets are not covered by the tour price. BTP Adventure does not directly arrange and buy tickets for international flights. However, we may suggest the best connections and airlines. For this purpose, contact us by e-mail or call us.

Due to the fact that the trip starts in Abu Dhabi – United Arab Emirates. It is necessary to check if the person traveling with the given passport does not need to additionally obtain a UAE visa. There is no such obligation for most UK and EU citizens

Insurance is not covered by the tour price. Having valid insurance is a condition for taking part in the trip. We recommend taking out insurance that will be appropriate for the planned itinerary and for your individual state of health and needs. Please send us the proof of your insurance contract.

You can purchase insurance on your own on the website of Axa or any other insurance company: https://www.axa.co.uk/travel-insurance/.

BTP Adventure may help you obtain adequate insurance cover. If you want our help, please contact us.

Meals other than those listed in the final itinerary.

Personal expenses and souvenirs.

Surcharge for a single room: 170 £

supplementary payment for the additional accommodation  In Abu Dhabi – United Arab Emirates.  In case of  arrival or departure on a different date,

We will keep updating the detailed information on the safety and final itinerary of the tour. Before you decide to submit the booking form, please learn about the current political and sanitary situation in Yemeni island of Socotra.

The planned expedition is an exclusive proposal prepared on the basis of our experience and knowledge of the local peculiarities and major sightseeing attractions of Yemeni island of Socotra.

We are committed to ensure the best possible and safe and, as far as feasible, comfortable travelling through this little-frequented and extremely interesting island with a fascinating nature and  history.

Depending on the political situation, the length of the tour and the order of visited places may change. In a situation of a serious threat to travellers’ safety, the tour may be cancelled. We will keep you updated as to whether the expedition is possible.

We can arrange a self-guided tour – if you are interested, please contact the office.

With any questions please contact BTP ADVENTURE

dates & prices
07/02/2023 - 14/02/2023
07/03/2023 - 14/03/2023
25/04/2023 - 02/05/2023
26/09/2023 - 03/10/2023

3190 £ group of 9 - 10

We can arrange a self-guided tour – if you are interested, please contact the office.

you can find price for the group in description
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