Tucked away in the military area at the northern end of the island (and therefore out of bounds, although pictures can be found online) stands a touching memorial to the unfortunate crew and passengers of the Baron Innerdale (or “Inverdale”, as it’s often incorrectly called, including on the monument itself). The Innerdale was travelling from Karachi to Liverpool in 1904 when she ran aground amid the Khuriya Muria islands. After three days, crew and passengers abandoned the ship in two lifeboats. One disappeared; the other (with 17 people aboard) made it to Masirah.

What happened next remains unclear. Probably a misunderstanding led to a fight, during which the stranded passengers were massacred – although there’s no basis for the outlandish rumours that they were subsequently eaten by the islanders. Sultan Faisal responded by visiting the island, banishing the local ruling sheikh and having nine of the murderers executed. He also razed the village of Hilf and forbade the islanders to build permanent houses for 100 years – a ban which wasn’t lifted until 1970.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Oman features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Life at the edge: wild camping in Oman

Life at the edge: wild camping in Oman

It's legal to wild camp in Oman. And, done responsibly, it's one of the most rewarding ways to take in the country's varied terrain. Fiona McAuslan pitched her …

17 May 2017 local_activity Special feature
Oman: a first-timer’s guide

Oman: a first-timer’s guide

Poised between the glitzy excess of the Emirates and the rigid conservatism of Saudi Arabia, Oman provides a winning introduction to the Middle East. Politica…

13 Dec 2016 • Andy Turner insert_drive_file Article
12 of the most beautiful places in the Middle East

12 of the most beautiful places in the Middle East

The Middle East is a paradox. Located at the cultural crossroads between east and west, the region nowadays tends to make headlines for all the wrong reasons, b…

16 Nov 2016 • Gavin Thomas insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month