The rose gardens of Jebel Akhdar

The rose gardens of Jebel Akhdar

Jebel Akhdar, the Green Mountain, is one of the highest mountains in Oman. Although the road up the mountain is tarmac, only four-wheel drive vehicles are allowed past the police checkpoint. At the top of the mountain, clinging to sides of vast gorges, are a number of...
Falcons in the Arab world

Falcons in the Arab world

In January 2017 a photo of 80 birds of prey on board a jet in the Middle East went viral after being posted on Reddit. It transpired that they were falcons flying to Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, supposedly for a hunting trip. It is not uncommon for airlines in the Middle...

Arabian sand painting

You might have heard of sand paintings from the Buddhist tradition where a mandala is created with coloured sand and then ritualistically dismantled once it is completed. However, there is also a different kind of sand painting that can be found in Arab counties....
Arabic in UK schools – Trialling at CFGS Devon

Arabic in UK schools – Trialling at CFGS Devon

In the sleepy coastal town of Brixham in South Devon, students are ambitiously broadening their horizons by learning the Arabic language. On the 10th of March 2017, five eager students at Churston Ferrers Grammar School turned up into the Modern Foreign Languages...
Email and Letter Signatures in Arabic

Email and Letter Signatures in Arabic

Signing off a letter is an important aspect of letter writing particularly if you are corresponding with an Arabic-speaking friend or colleague. Gestures are important in all aspects of Arabic communication and equally so in letters, emails and correspondence. The...
Hand gestures in the Arab world

Hand gestures in the Arab world

In the Arab world there is a language of hand gestures, which you can have great fun in observing. One gesture is associated with the Arabic word ta3aal (Come here, please. Come with me). Whereas Europeans signal for somebody to come with the palm of the hand facing...