Photos: Matthias Hammer/Biosphere Expeditions
Reef Check is partnering with Biosphere Expeditions, an award winning eco-expedition company, to offer a unique, one-week, marine science research expedition to a beautiful, unexplored, coral reef area in the small, middle eastern country of Oman. Despite its location bordering the Arabian Gulf and Indian Ocean, Oman is a peaceful country and has never experienced the turmoil afflicting other countries in the region. A stable government led by an open-minded Sultan who promotes higher education for both sexes has allowed Oman to enjoy long-term peace and prosperity. The expedition is to Oman’s Musandam peninsula, known as the Norway of the Middle East because of its dozens of fjord-like bays bordered by towering mountains. The spectacular terrestrial scenery is only exceeded by the cornucopia of life found underwater.
After arriving in Dubai, expedition members will travel by car on new roads three hours up the coast to Khasab, a small historic town, where they will board the MV Khalad, a live-aboard boat. The MV Khalad is a 23 m long, air conditioned “dhow” with an experienced crew, a skiff and an imaginative cook. The expedition leader is Jon Shrives, a jovial British doctoral candidate in coral reef ecology at Oxford University. Jon has led Biosphere/Reef Check expeditions for two years to Cayos Cochinos, Honduras.