Thursday, August 23

On holiday again

I'm going on holidays again to Paris until September 3th and I will eat a lot of "croissant". Meanwhile you can read, or reread, the most popular categories of my blog :

  1. cost of living : discover how much you need to live in Oman if you come in expatriation.
  2. expat thoughts : what have been my interesting thoughts living as an expat in Oman so far...
  3. supermarket : it seems a lot of people are looking for information about Oman supermarket in google and often they reach my blog
  4. restaurants and food : discover some of the restaurants I've tested so far in Muscat (I need to complete this category after my vacations with the Golden spoon, the Tomatoes...)
  5. tourism - places to visit : this is the definitive category to know what to visit in Oman. But I recommand you wait the winter to visit these places...

Monday, August 20

Yemeni restaurant

This small restaurant is located just in front of the Sultan qaboos sport complex in ghala. It represents very well the kind of small arabic food restaurants you can find in Muscat, which serve correct food, quickly and for cheap prices. Some would say they are the traditional arabic fast-foods !

The meal you can see below has just cost 2 OMR and it was excellent ! And you eat with your hand. The technique to eat rice with your hand is simple : roll some rice up into a ball, and push it into your mouth using your thumb.

You're sitting down in small compartments and you close the curtain, then you eat on a carpet and food is put down on a plastic paper.

Friday, August 17

Women expats in Oman

I've seen a lot of people wondering how is the life for a woman expat in Oman. Well, I've asked my wife to write a post on her resentment toward her situation here, here is the result :

"The good points that have surprised me compared with what I was expecting before leaving to Oman :

  • Women are pretty free in Oman : they can drive and work as a man would do.
  • There is no obligation to wear a veil for a non-muslim woman.
  • Other men look at you but rarely bore you.
The disadvantage for a woman expat in Oman are :
  • You have to be prepared to the fact that men (omani and especially some indian men) are looking at you most of the time, but not especially in a mean way. It becomes an habit and quickly you don't pay attention anymore. Also, when you're walking alone in the street (which is not often, because you are almost always using your car in Muscat) some cars honk at you (and I'm not speaking about the cabs)
  • clothes problem : basically you can wear whatever you want but it may be taken as a mark of disrespect by Omani people if you wear things too bare. You have to respect their beliefs and at least cover properly your breats and legs under the knees.
  • For some reason, it is difficult to go to a popular beach in swimsuit because women there, if they go for a swim, they will go with all their clothes on. But you can still go to more quiet places, like Qantab coves or beaches in front of the big hotels... But most of the time the western ladies register to the club of the intercontinental hotel and use its swimming pools"

If you want to share your experience as a expat woman in Oman, please leave a comment !

Monday, August 13

Sultan qaboos sports complex

In the ghala district of Muscat, just in front of the Majan hotel, is the large Sultan Qaboos sports complex. This complex has many facilities : a giant football field, tennis fields, multi-sports gymnasium...

I've tried the swimming pool recently. There is a olympic size pool, a 25meters pool and a diving pool. Actually we were only 2 using the olympic pool ! It was a very different experience compared to the parisian overcrowded pools :)

This sport complex is not meant for tourist but more for local people. However you can access the facilities for very low prices. The membership for swimming pool is about 0,5 OMR a month ! However women are not allowed inside except at certain dedicated period of time in the morning...

Friday, August 10

Salalah - part3

To finish, some unusual facts about Salalah :

yes there are cows in Oman ! In fact you can only found them in Salalah region, and most of the milk produced in Oman is coming from here.

On This picture you can see a grouping of blue tents : These kind of camp are actually "camel drivers" who live in the valley during the monsoon. a lot of grilled meat seller s are here also, spreading a sweet fumet around the camps...

Monday, August 6

Salalah - part2

Driving around Salalah, you wil see a lot of interesting spots :

here on this picture is the lovely water spring of Jarziz, which was unfortunately dry beacuse of the rain shortage of the previous monthes.

On the way to the beach, you can see this impressive canyon

The splendid beach was a little bit ruined by the weather (too much fog !) but it was still nice to swim in this deserted sea :)

Saturday, August 4

Salalah - part1

Salalah is a famous city at the extreme south of Oman, in the Dhofar region. it is well-known for its suprising low temperature and its green luxuriant nature.

That's why this region is very appreciated by Omani and other people from the gulf during the Summer, who like to spend a week-end having picnics in these unusuall green mountains.

Moreover, it is not expensive to go to Salalah from Muscat. The round trip by plane is 65 OMR (check "air borne" agency for best prices), and it lasts 1,5 hour...