According to aceinland, Socotra (Soqotra) (Arabic: سُقُطْرَى Suquṭra) is a group of islands in the Indian Ocean (Asia) that is part of Yemen. Socotra consists of the following islands: Socotra (main island), Abd Al Kuri, Samha and Darsa. The capital of Socotra is Hadiboh. Socotra is one of the few islands that does not have a volcanic origin, but was created by the separation from Africa.
Socotra is best known for its flora and fauna. The islands resemble a lunar landscape and many of the plants, flowers and animals are found nowhere else in the world. As a result, 70% of Socotra has been declared a National Park. The most famous trees that grow there are the so-called dragon trees. The population (mainly settled on the main island) lives mainly from livestock farming and fishing. Due to its favorable location, the islands are used as a stopover for boats on long journeys across the ocean. The islands are also known for its caves, sandy beaches, clear blue water and ideal conditions for diving, snorkeling, sailing, surfing and mountain biking. See allcitycodes for area codes of countries in Middle East.
Where is Socotra located?
Travel information of Socotra
Official name: Socotra
Area: 3,800 km²
Country code: YE, YEM
Population: 42,842 inhabitants (2004)
Form of government: Presidential Republic
Highest point: 1,500 m (Haggier Mountains)
Distance (Amsterdam – Hadiboh): 6,300 km
Flight time: approximately 11 hours and 30 minutes
Negative travel advice
Current status: All trips to Soqotra are discouraged.
Current color code: Red. Due to this status, a negative travel advice
is in effect for Soqotra.
Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19), there may be (temporary) measures in place on Soqotra that you as a tourist may have to deal with. For the most up-to-date corona travel advice, please refer to our special coronavirus travel advice page. For the number of current corona infections, number of deaths and various corona-related graphs from Soqotra, please visit Countryaah.
At the moment there are no travel organizations that offer travel to Socotra. It is possible to order airline tickets.
Travel guides and maps
Are you looking for a travel guide, map, walking map, cycling map, book or DVD about Socotra?
Weather and climate
Socotra mainly has a desert climate. During the winter months the temperatures are around 30 degrees and during the summer months around 40 degrees. During the nights, temperatures can drop to freezing.
The current weather (weather forecast) and a weather forecast for Socotra can be found on our extensive weather page.
January, February, March, April, May, October, November and December are the best months to travel to Socotra. Nature is at its best during these months. In addition, in these months you avoid the extremely hot summer period.
Arabic is the official language on Socotra. In addition, Soqotri is spoken.
Would you like to translate from or into Arabic for free? Use the Google translator for this.
You must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months when applying for a visa.
A visa is required. You can apply for this in person at the embassy of Yemen in The Hague.
Note: Your passport cannot contain an Israeli stamp.
Embassies and consulates
Below is an overview of relevant diplomatic representations, including addresses and contact details.
Dutch Embassy in Yemen (also for Socotra): Temporarily closed.
Embassy of Yemen in the Netherlands: yemenembassynl.org.
For urgent assistance, you can contact the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24/7 on +31247247247.
It is advisable to get one or more vaccinations before visiting Socotra.
For extensive vaccination advice and to make a vaccination appointment at home, please visit Thuisvaccinatie.nl. You can also see here whether your health insurance reimburses the vaccination(s).
There is malaria in Socotra. Malaria is an infectious disease transmitted by malaria mosquitoes. This infectious disease can lead to death if not treated in time and/or incorrectly.
For prevention and control of malaria, please visit our malaria page.
Money and Currency matters
On Socotra you pay with the Yemeni Rial (YER).
The current position of this currency (currency, currency) can be found on our exchange rate page.
There are no ATMs on Socotra.
The prices on Socotra are a lot lower than in the Netherlands. The price difference with the Netherlands is -42% on average. Some examples are: restaurants (61% cheaper), food (24% cheaper), imported beer in catering (10% more expensive), cigarettes (81% cheaper) and public transport (86% cheaper). Please note that the price difference in tourist areas, especially during high season, may vary.
It is customary to tip in Socotra. In more expensive restaurants, a tip of about 10% is expected. At cheaper restaurants, rounding up the bill is sufficient.
During our summer time it is 1 hour later on Socotra.
During our winter time it is 2 hours later on Socotra.
Socotra has no difference between winter time and summer time.
The local time, date and time zone for Socotra can be found on our time difference page.
Traffic and route
On Socotra you must drive on the right.
To drive and/or rent a motor vehicle on Socotra, you must have an international driver’s license. The international driver’s license is available at an ANWB shop.
With the Google route planner you can compile a route description from, to or within Socotra.
On Socotra you need a travel plug.
More information about common plugs and sockets on Socotra can be found on our electricity page (look under Yemen).
If you need help from the police, fire brigade and/or ambulance in an emergency, you can use the emergency numbers below.
– Police: unknown
– Fire brigade: unknown
– Ambulance: unknown
It is not recommended to drink water from the tap.
If you are unable to buy bottled water, use a water purifier to purify the water or boil the water for 5 minutes. After this you can safely use it as drinking water and for things like brushing teeth, cleaning lenses and washing vegetables and / or fruit. More information about drinking water and/or the purchase of water purification products can be found on our drinking water page.
News and newspapers
The latest news related to Socotra can be found on Google news.
An overview of the newspapers from Yemen (Socotra) can be found on Abyznewslinks.
Websites from Socotra end in.ye.
Socotra official website: socotraislandadventure.com.
The country code (international access number) to call someone on Socotra is 00967 or +967.
Do you want to call the Netherlands from Socotra? Then use the Dutch country code 0031 or +31.
(If using a country code, omit the leading 0 of the number to be called.)
Photos and videos
On Flickr you will find a nice collection of photos of Socotra.
On Youtube you will find a nice collection of Socotra videos.
An overview of all public holidays in Yemen (Socotra) can be found on Beleven.org.
Reviews and travel experiences
On TripAdvisor you will find reviews from travelers about accommodations (eg hotel), restaurants and destinations on Soqotra, supplemented with photos, videos and places of interest.
Are you looking for a travelogue about Socotra?
Here you will find travel reports and experiences of travelers who have previously visited Socotra. It is also possible to keep a free diary of your trip for family and/or friends.
Nature and world heritage
An overview of the protected nature areas (including national parks, reserves and wildlife parks) on Socotra can be found on Protected Planet.
An overview of the world heritage sites on Socotra can be found on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Do you want to know how much you are allowed to import and export when traveling to Socotra? On the IATA website you will find an overview with the maximum quantities of cigarettes, alcohol, perfume and money, among other things. If you stick to these quantities, you don’t have to declare anything to customs. You will also find the laws and regulations regarding the entry of pets on this website.
Entrepreneurship and doing business
If you intend to do business on or do business with Socotra, it is wise to prepare well. The Netherlands Enterprise Agency can help you with this. On PaulSourcing.com you will find a large amount of information about Socotra, including: opportunities, import and export rules, trade figures, do’s and don’ts, current sanctions, business partners and subsidies.
Below you will find relevant legislation and regulations that you may encounter during your visit to Socotra.
– Alcohol: Buying and/or drinking prohibited.
– Tobacco: Buy from the age of 18, smoking at all ages.
– Smoking ban: No
– Homosexuality: Not allowed (death penalty).
Did you know that…
…The entire archipelago was declared a World Heritage Site in 2008?
… Socotra broke away from Africa about 6 million years ago?
…A large part of the flora and fauna on Socotra is unique?
…Socotra would like to benefit from ecotourism?
…Pirates are active in the waters around Socotra?
…The landscape of Socotra is often described as surrealistic?