Rock climbing, Wadi Scrambling, Dune Climbing, outdoors-loving. My name is Heather Duncan and these are a few of my favourite things. Currently located in Muscat, Oman I left my home in the chilly North of Scotland in search of a new adventure and life in Oman has surpassed every hope of adventure - it became much more! My lifestyle in the sultanate involves frequent wadi & mountain trips to scale the highest and enjoy everything that this diverse country has to offer. I have been in Oman for just over 6 years and hoping for many more to come!
When I first arrived in Oman, I was excited for a new opportunity but I quickly hit hurdles that slowed me down and challenged me. I was young, naive, 4,000 miles away from home with no friends or family around. I didn't speak a word of Arabic and even the most basic of chores got me down as people wanted to speak to the man of the house and not a woman. The first few months were lonely and frustrating. The challenges felt like sink or swim and I was determined not to let them discourage me or send me home to the UK with a sense of failure so I fought back hard. My website 'The Duncan Adventures' was created within the first 2 weeks of me arriving in Oman which helped to push me to more social events to meet new people & find friends. This first element of feeling less lonely was the spark to many other wonderful things that helped me to feel empowered. The strength and positivity became a chain reaction and as I achieved more, I felt the power to continue and assert myself.
The outdoors life here in Oman is wonderful and this is the main reason I wish to stay here for a long time, there is always something new to see and do and it can all be done on a budget - This makes it accessible to many people to come and enjoy. The wadis, in particular, are something that really excite me - We don't have opportunities like that in Scotland. Well, not without hypothermia! My favourite Wadi is Arbaeen due to its beauty.
Some ask where have I been in Oman! Well, that is a good question, many of the locals' joke that I have seen more of their country than they have and I guess that is true. Masirah Island is somewhere I haven't reached yet and I would love to go back to Salalah for Khareef.
There have been many people along the way who have inspired me to try new places but I believe that I inspire myself, with the help of social media - When I post something cool on my website and Instagram then people want to know where is next for me, I then find it a challenge to keep trying new places and documenting them.
The Omani people are what makes this whole experience so wonderful - The country is safe, positive and welcoming to outsiders giving us the chance to immerse ourselves in the culture and lifestyle and keep having fun together. That’s what inspired me by the Omani culture, nature, and their people.
In my 6 years in Oman, I have changed more than I could have ever expected. New experiences and challenges have given me the opportunity to discover things about myself and my personality that I never knew before. I have been able to take on these challenges without the comfort of my family and home next to me to fall back on. Now I look after myself and I know my strengths, and that in itself is a powerful thing.
In the end, I would love to reassure people that Oman is a magnificent country to visit. When you arrive if you treat the country and the local people with respect then you will be rewarded with the most amazing life experiences that shape & mould you and before you know it, Oman has a piece of your heart forever.