Ra’sal-Khaymah, United Arab Emirates
Tour of Arabia: A six leg sailing race from Oman to Bahrain with EFG Bank (Monaco)
Having started in Muscat, Oman we have now completed:
Leg 1 Muscat – Sohar (Oman)
Leg 2 Sohar – Ra’sal-Khaymah (United Arab Emirates)
Tomorrow we start Leg 3 RAK – Dubai
It is a really awesome experience with the new sights and sounds of a different ancient culture. As a traditional Muslim country there is a call to prayer five times a day that echoes through the town. There are awesome old dhows (sailing vessels), fishing fleets and singing fishermen. We are surrounded by the clear blue Indian Ocean and the rising hills inland.
Leg 1 we saw 26 sea snakes in less than an two hours, (you’ve got to keep your toes up when you’re hiking out, and I being someone nervous of snakes I always look carefully under the jib before hoisting in case one managed to get washed up onboard!) The Beaked Sea Snake is highly venomous.
Leg 2 – Turtles, Pilot whales (jumping out of the water, which is unusual), beautiful Musandam peninsula which creates the Straits of Hormuz between Oman and Iran on the other side.
Fish and fishing boats everywhere, and smiling faces as the fleet sails past, a fishing skiff filled to the brim with large garfish leaving just enough room for the single fishermen heading home at 30kts.
Unfortunately we also sailed through a small oil slick only a few meters across which we didn’t see in the middle of the night, which fully tarred the boat and ultimately the deck and us, (a full sized oil spill disaster must be a horrific thing.)
Results: EFG Bank Monaco leads the Sailing Arabia tour with 1st,1st and 4th.