If there ever was a Garden of Eden, it must have looked like Wadi Bani Khaled – much more than the usual picturesque oasis! Here emerald colored pools lined with palm trees and reed welcome the visitors. An easy trek leads into a narrow canyon with more pools surrounded by large boulders.
Needless to say that everybody wants to see such a place. Nowhere else in Oman did we see so many tourists in one place. And they are so obvious! Who else would bathe in public, stripped down to shorts and bikinis? That’s how most visitors present themselves here, while dipping into the balmy waters of the pools. Although large signs ask for descent clothing, most tourists show a lot of flesh. We found this a bit out of place, but as we mentioned earlier, Omani are most tolerant and nobody else seemed to mind.
Half an hour into the canyon a cave can be explored. Gilles squeezed inside guided by some kid equipped with a flashlight. The further you go into the cave, the warmer and more humid it gets. Except some bats, there is not really much see.
There is one real nuisance in this otherwise heavenly place: plastic litter. We are not talking about a random plastic bottle here and there. The pollution is massive and everywhere: in the water, along the shores, on the path, in-between the boulders. Why this place in particular was so littered, we do not know…