Note – due to weather in UAE this arrival date has changed to Monday, not Saturday as originally scheduled.

Children who grew up in the 1980s in the UK may remember the popular cartoon The Mysterious Cities of Gold.

Golden CondorOne of coolest parts of it was when the heroes found and flew the Golden Condor, a huge solar-powered ornithopter, which soared high when the sun was out (and only when the sun was out hence the show wasn’t set in the UK). 

A flight of fantasy for children back then but a reality now as the crew of the Solar Impulse prepare to fly their amazing aircraft from Abu Dhabi to Oman. 

The flight is making its first stop in Muscat as part of its 2015 global circumnavigation, having made the first successful test flight in Abu Dhabi (see report from The National). Solar Impulse is the only airplane of perpetual endurance, able to fly day and night on solar power, without fuel.

Setting off from the UAE, the pilot will fly the zero-fuel airplane for about 400km (215NM) for an estimated time of 12 hours before landing Monday afternoon at Muscat Airport.

His Highness Sayyid Shihab bin Tariq Al Said, Advisor to His Majesty Sultan Qaboos, will be hosting a reception and press conference from 5pm so anyone wanting to spot the aircraft as it makes its approach should look to the skies around that time. 

 To track its progress on the day, and even live chat with the crew, visit the Solar Impulse website. 

*See the Times of Oman print edition on Sunday for words and pictures, plus it will be online with video on

(display picture credit: – also loads of stunning pictures on the website)

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