Ayaft Canyon

Ayaft canyon is the greenest place of Socotra. Its unique moisture-retaining microclimate is created by numerous springs and streams. The canyon is protected from summer monsoons by Skand Mountains. That is why its vegetation remains lush the year round.
It looks like a fairy world filled with wondrous birds, fantastic trees and real mountain Socotrans. Ayaft Canyon National park is one of the most attractive and important place of interest. Ayaft is considered as a natural nursery due to its large abundance of endemic trees, plants and birds  ,There are many big trees around the canyon. The landscape of the canyon is really beautiful as well as you'll find large fresh water pools and there is a possibility to swim in this pools.
It is the right place where frankincense trees grow. With a thin smooth body and long branches with small narrow leaves the tree is not much to look at. It is rather difficult to find it – you need someone to show it to you. But this is the tree that made Socotra famous in the ancient world.
Frankincense, also called olibanum (Arabic language: لبان, lubban), is an aromatic resin obtained from trees of the genus Boswellia by slashing the bark and allowing the exuded resins to bleed out and harden. These hardened resins are called tears. With special skill it is quite possible to harvest a handful of frankincense for an hour. If you lived 2100 years ago, you would get hold of a vast wealth as Socotra’s frankincense was valued above gold and other incenses.

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Ayaft Canyon

From Ayaft gorge you can undertake a number of interesting trekking trips, for example, back to Hadibo. This trek route takes a day. It is not difficult but uphill hiking skill will be good for you.

Ayaft on map

When walking along Ayaft look under your feet. It is the right place where you meet chameleons at various times. They won't do you any harm.
The whole trip takes at least 3 hours. It is good to combine it with swimming and toasting on the close deserted beach. After that you can wash sea-salt from your body in a fresh water pool of Ayaft.

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