Yemen, The Socotra Archipelago
The Socotra Islands are the jewels of Yemen and the whole Arabian region. It is indeed a place of botanical and zoological treasures nurtured by many generations of the islanders, the keepers of the unique cultural traditions of Yemen. For centuries, the Socotra Islands have been out of early explorers’ and naturalists’ attention. But by the end of 90-s they became a center of attraction never seen before especially from those who are interested in their economic development and natural environment preservation.
Dating back to prehistoric times the unique nature of Socotra attracts not only scientists and specialists, but also enthusiasts of eco-tourism.
Socotra island is one of few places in the world where people live in harmony with nature, so rarely found in our modernized world.
Tourism on Socotra is still developing. We arrange tours on Socotra Archipelago in cooperation with the local socotrian guides having many years' experience with tourists from various countries. They are highly professional and can show you the most attractive places of the island, tell about its nature, language and culture, as well as organize diving, trekking or other special programs.
Try the real taste of Socotra with "Socotra Tamam" travel & tourism agency!
Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) delegation, currently visiting Yemen's Archipelago of Socotra, has launched the first phase of its development projects there. These include the first phase of Sheikh Zayed City with 161 houses, clinic, school, public council for residents and a mosque with a capacity of 600 worshippers.
When a powerful cyclone struck Yemen's Socotra in November 2015, killing three people and injuring about 100, the UAE came to the rescue of the islanders, offering them whatever they needed. The effort had nothing to do with politics. Nor was it just for show. It was purely a humanitarian effort. Since then, the UAE's humanitarian efforts and initiatives have been in full swing, helping the people of Socotra. This has prompted some to suspect the UAE’s motives. However, those who think – and have been spreading the rumour – that it is seeking to "occupy" the island need to consider some facts.
"Touching land countless faces smiling and all curious, who were these people. I announced: "I am happy to finally be back in Africa", to which they replied, "No no, this is the Middle East!" Awesome. Socotra tamam! Socotra good! An expression one quickly learns through osmosis as it is a common expression people often times ask you on the island of Socotra. Though this is a common Arabic expression, the local language Socotri is, as the name suggests, a local language whose roots is one step older than Arabic."
The island of Socotra is becoming a popular destination for yachting cruisers. Several sailing boats visited Socotra in the last month. We help sailors with all the necessary formalities, to buy diesel, food and of course to see our amazing island.
Frankincense, the resin produced by a species of Boswellia, was one of the most valuable commodities produced in the ancient world.
Old photos of Socotra in The national geographic magazine. 1918. "The isle of frankincense" by Charles K.Moses Formerly United States Consul-General to Aden, Arabia.
"And then came the boat, it wasn’t exactly pristine, in fact it was downright shoddy. A run-down wooden Yemeni fishing boat semi-converted to carry 8,000 bags of cement to Socotra, Yemen. It barely looked sea-worthy. I would be lying if I wasn’t concerned that it could even make the 50 hour journey but at this stage I was so happy that all the paperwork had been processed I jumped on in a hurry."
197 countries in the world, it’s taken me 10 years to reach 195. Aside from a year teaching English in Chiang Mai, Thailand and a year in Sydney, Australia during my only ‘real’ job, I’ve been on the road, averaging over 2 weeks per country. But I’ve been stuck on 195/197 for 6 months now, and it’s breaking my heart. So what are my last 2 countries? Yemen and Norway. Admittedly, people are often surprised why Norway is still left, but that’s strategic. Ever since I reached 150 countries, I’ve planned to ‘save’ Norway for my last country. It’ll be a huge party, a big celebration and it’s close to the UK and Ireland so my mum, sister, friends etc can come and celebrate with me. I can’t exactly invite them all to Yemen to pop Champagne, now can I?! So that leaves me with Yemen. Good old Yemen. I’ve been trying to visit Yemen for more than 6 months now, and it’s been quite the adventure.
Socotra became popular for sailors going in the direction of the Red Sea. Three sailing boats came to Socotra at the same time.
I built this boat with my own hands from the old fiberglass canoe and scrap materials. Great for fishing and sailing along the shore. This is the only sailboat on Socotra.