Camel Trekking & Rugged Coastlines
Good news, we’re going back to Socotra in March 2021! If you want to see a full itinerary or to sign up click here to head over to Inertia Network’s page, with who I partner to run these trips. You can also find a brief description of the itinerary below.
Prices are set at $4,500 per person and this includes the roundtrip flight from Dubai to Socotra, Yemeni visas, all camping gear, local guides, and three meals per day (excluding arrival and departure days).
We will also be offering a second, longer Socotra expedition to the outlying islands of the Socotra Archipelago and on a trek on the main island of Socotra. This trip will be 15 days in duration with the option to add a 5 day visit to Mainland Yemen at the end of the trip. For security reasons, we will not be posting the mainland Yemen itinerary online.
For more on the Socotra Outlying Islands Expedition head to our info page for full details on this departure. You can also send an email to [email protected] with any questions.
A Little About Socotra
Socotra is a gem of biodiversity located about halfway between Yemen and Somalia in the Arabian Sea.
The Socotra Archipelago is home to many species of endemic flora and fauna– in fact, 37% of Socotra’s plant species and 90% of its reptile species are found nowhere else on Earth. This high number of endemics puts Socotra in the ranks of the Galapagos, Hawaii, and New Caledonia for the highest numbers of endemic species.
In 2008 the archipelago was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
On This Socotra Tour We Will Explore The Highlights Of The Pearl Of The Arabian Sea
These highlights will include:
- Immersing into the Socotri culture. Socotris are a truly unique people with their own language and a male handshake that you won’t see anywhere else
- Exploring the unbelievably pristine and gorgeous Detwah Lagoon
- Walking among Dragon Blood Trees high on a plateau- Socotra’s most iconic plant
- Meeting nomadic Bedouin Tribespeople in the Socotra highlands and interacting with them to get an idea of their daily lives
- Trekking across the rugged granite peaks in the Haggier Mountains the arid Noged Plateau.
- Trek down into the depths of Socotra at the massive Hoq Cave
- Swim in a natural infinity pool overlooking the sea below and wander through a forest of Dragon Blood & Frankincense Trees at Socotra’s Homhil Protected Area
- Camp under the stars in a number of areas including in the Arher Dunes next to the stunning beach of the same name
15-25 March, 2021
11 days | 10 nights
Maximum Group Size
30%, due at time of sign up
Included In The Costs
- Accommodations & camping equipment
- 3 meals per day
- Roundtrip Dubai-Socotra flights
- Yemeni Visa Fees
- Transportation by 4×4 on Socotra Island
- Professional English-speaking local guiding team
- All entry fees
- International airfare to & from Dubai
- UAE Visa Fee (if applicable)
- Travel insurance
- Personal spending
- Snorkle & Diving Gear
- Sleeping bags
So Why Join This Socotra Tour?
Quite simply put, Socotra is one of the most difficult places in the world to access right now. We have secured all the documentation and approvals necessary to reach the island by flight to offer this Socotra tour. Getting a Yemeni visa can be a nearly impossible challenge that we have navigated and will assist everyone in the group in obtaining.
For the Socotra tour, we have partnered with a local operator that we personally know and trust to guide us on the island to show our small group one of the most wonderful and pristine environments on Earth.
The Socotra Tour Itinerary: Camel Trekking & Rugged Coastlines
Day 1: Flight from Dubai, Detwah Lagoon
The group will meet in Dubai airport in the early morning for our flight to Socotra. Our flight should arrive in Hadiboh around 9:30 am, but delays can be expected.
Once on the island, we will be met by our local team and then head into Hadiboh for lunch and to visit the souq. Soon after, we will make the drive out to Detwah Lagoon.
We’ll spend the afternoon exploring, swimming, and enjoying Detwah.
Overnight: Camping, Detwah Lagoon
Day 2: Northwest Socotra
The second day of this Socotra tour will be spent exploring the northwest corner of Socotra Island. This will include a visit to beautiful Shua’ab Beach, reached by small dhow boats, and an adventure into Detwah Lagoon with our local friend, Abdullah the Caveman where we will get a chance to see some of the critters that call this beautiful lagoon home.
Overnight: Camping, Detwah Lagoon
Day 3-7: Haggier Mountain Trek
Next, we head deep into the Haggier Mountains that run across Socotra Island. On this five-day trek, we’ll get to experience some of Socotra’s famed endemics and the jagged granite spires the bisect the island up close and personal.
After crossing these wild mountains, we’ll descend to the arid Noged Plateau, traversing it to arrive on Socotra’s rugged and remote southern coast.
You can expect around 4-6 hours of hiking each day with pack-camels helping carry gear and food.
Day 8-10: Northeast Socotra
After taking a COVID PCR test in the morning in Hadiboh, we’ll begin this leg of our Socotra journey by driving to the northeast coast of Socotra.
Over the next three days we will explore the areas of Homhil, Arher, Kalisan, Momi Plateau, Dihamri, and Hoq Cave.
In Homhil Protected Area, we’ll have the chance to walk amongst Socotra’s famed endemics, including none other than the famous dragon blood trees while enjoying the unreal natural infinity pool that overlooks the Arabian Sea. In Arher we’ll climb blinding white sand dunes and play in the sea, and if we’re lucky, we may see blue glowing bioluminescent plankton in the evening. We’ll also take some time to snorkel in the reef around Dihamri Protected Area, one of the best places to experience sea life on the island.
Another famous spot to see on Socotra is the massive Hoq Cave, where we will make an early morning hike up to the mouth of the cave before making the trek inside this deep dark abyss. Continuing over to Momi Plateau we have the option to make a trek down to the white limestone wadi home to the crystal clear freshwater pools of Kalisan.
Overnight: Camping, Arher Beach
Day 11: Depart back to Dubai
After a week of sun and exploration through Socotra, we fly back to Dubai in the afternoon (departure 14:00; scheduled arrival in Dubai 17:30; expect delays).
Other Important Information
Traveling in Socotra is most definitely not your standard trip, so this Socotra tour comes with a few unique hurdles.
Sleeping Arrangements & Showering
Socotra is rugged, rough, wild, and remote. We will be camping every night we are on the island on this Socotra tour. A couple of camps we stay at may have rainwater tanks for showering, but most will not. So yes, you will go for several days without bathing.
3 meals per day are included on the trip (except on arrival and departure days). In Socotra meals will be locally prepared. Rice, bread and sweet shai (tea) are staples out here and will accompany nearly every meal. When it’s available we will eat fresh locally caught seafood purchased from fishermen.
If you have any allergies or special eating conditions please let us know in advance so we can try our best to accommodate you.
Electricity, Internet & Communications
Much of the time we will not have electricity. There is electricity in Hadiboh although it isn’t totally reliable, and you will only have a handful of camps that have electricity with generators. I highly recommend purchasing a solar charger and external batteries to bring with you to keep your electronics charged out here.
Given the remote nature of this trip, don’t expect to find wifi. Mobile phone coverage is extremely limited and not the most reliable in Socotra. If you want to keep in contact with those back home, I highly recommend bringing an Inreach Explorer+ or Find Me Spot with you.
A Note For Photographers
Bring as many camera batteries as you can with you from home to avoid running out of power between chargings. I also recommend bringing far more memory with you than you think you may need for the days we are in Socotra.
You will take heaps of photos, that goes without saying. There is nowhere on the island to purchase more memory cards so do come prepared.
Medications & First Aid
Bring any medication you need or may possibly need from home. There isn’t much in way of medicine and doctors out here in Socotra, so come prepared. I also highly recommend carrying a simple first aid kit with you for any minor injuries.
This Socotra tour is limited to a maximum of 14 travelers so spots will fill quickly. Click the button below to sign up for the trip or get email updates about the tour. If you’re looking for more info on Socotra in order to start planning, I recommend picking up a copy of Bradt’s new Socotra Guidebook!
Need Socotra Travel Insurance?
Start shopping plans over at battleface, my go-to travel insurance choice.
Bring Relief To Those Effected By The Crisis In Yemen
Yemen, especially the mainland of the country is undergoing one of the worst humanitarian crises in modern times. If you are interested in helping the people of Yemen, please consider donating to one of the following organizations:
- Zakat Foundation: Provides emergency relief and food distribution in several countries including Yemen.
- International Rescue Committee: Helps to bring safety, education, power, and health services to some of the world’s most devastating humanitarian disasters including Yemen.
- Baitulmaal AHED: Organization that works in Yemen as well as all over the world to help bring poverty and disaster relief.
- Islamic Relief: Working to alleviate hunger, illiteracy, and disease in Yemen and globally.
- Solidarios sin Fronteras: Spanish organization helping bring relief, food, water, and reconstruction projects to Yemen as well as Socotra.