Hire a local driver/guide !
It is absolutely necessary to hire a 4WD with a local driver/guide. While the tar road that surrounds the island is in a good condition, if you want to reach the more remote areas like Diksam a 4WD is a must. It is pretty cheap to hire a driver: 10.000 Yemeni Rial per day (less than 50 €). If you do longer hikes in the mountains, you can arrange to be picked up at a certain spot so you won`t have to carry all your camping equipment.
- Road Trip
Watch the flight schedules
Yemenia from Sana'a (or Aden or Mukalla) is the only viable way to go to Socotra. They usually operate two flights a week, but in summer they will usually have one only. They may have taken bookings for a return on the second weekly flight already, before they decide to change their schedule back to once-a-week-only. Difficult to predict, but from May-September don't count on two flights a week. In winter they may announce a third flight, but that does not necessarily happen.
In other words: during the season (October-April) expect two flights, meaning you can go for a three-day or a four-day visit (or longer of course). In summer expect one flight a week only, menaing you'll spend a week there (at a time whne the weather is not favourable: hot and strong winds). If you happen to be in Yemen in summer and this may be your only chance, you may still want to consider going to Socotra, which I read somewhere is rated no. 4 on the list of eco hot spots world wide.
fly to Eden -- Socotra Yemen
As of June 1999 one can now fly to Socotra, they even call it an international airport. Keeping in mind that going to Socotra is what I would call adventure travel - so, consider even the flight on Yemenia is a high adventure. In fact the 2 internal flights to Socotra were very nice with a warm kind crew who told me were the best seats were to photograph Island. The flights were completely full, ever seat, every available spot for hand luggage and I was the only foreigner on my flight. The flight goes into Hadibu, which is the main village on Socotra. The flights are now two days a week but going to three. Now you fly from Sana’a or Aden on Mondays the flight is from Aden and on Fridays Sana’a . The cost of the flight to Socotra from Sana’a is $295. I booked my flight through a friend that works at a local travel agency in Sana’a at and paid $175 and think it is possible to get the ticket cheaper if you book in conjunction with the international flight to Sann’a if you fly in on Yemenia airlines.
The Friday flight leaves Sana’a at 05:00 and is flight # IY420. Going back to Sana’a it is on flight IY421 leaving at 08:45. The Mon Flight leaves Aden at 05:00 lands at 08:00 and is flight number IY422.
The airport code by the way for Socotra is SCT in case you are looking.
Mr. AL-Turki and Mohamed Shaif from Yamanat Tours helped me get my tickets
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