Stay Safe in Yemen
Yemen is presently at war and under international assault, and it has suffered significant damage. Terrorism and kidnappings of individuals, especially foreigners, have also been issues.
When it is possible to return to Yemen, the following will become relevant:
Under Islamic law, public use of alcohol is punishable in Yemen. Homosexual activities are likewise illegal and may result in death.
Driving is done on the right side of the road. While Yemeni drivers have a reputation for poor driving, the truth is a little more complex. Risks are taken, especially in Sana’a, that would not be taken in other locations, but the people anticipate this and prepare appropriately.
However, for journeys outside of Sana’a, a 4-wheel-drive vehicle is virtually required since most roads outside of major city routes are not paved. Travellers might also consider hiring a local driver/guide, since maps are not always as helpful as they may be in other countries. Because only cities are adequately secured by the military, a city boundaries border pass is needed. It is also worth mentioning that Yemen has one of the largest concentrations of armed people outside of Texas, so please be kind.
Stay Healthy in Yemen
It is best to avoid using tap water. To be safe, it is best to stick to the bottled variety.
Also, keep in mind that the country is very dusty. Travelers with respiratory issues (such as asthma) may have difficulty in more distant locations.
The dry air (particularly from September to April) may be irritating, producing cracked lips and sometimes nosebleeds. Always take a Vaseline stick, which is available at most pharmacies in Yemen, as well as a package of tissues with you.
Remember that most of the country is at altitude, especially while trekking. As a result, in addition to drinking lots of water and protecting yourself from the sun (which can be quite severe in Yemen), be mindful of any disorientation you may be feeling as a result of fast ascents. Many of the most popular hiking trails are coated with loose stones, so watch your step. Some peak ascents may be as steep as 70-80 degrees, making any fall disastrous. Bring bandages and/or anti-bacterial treatments in case you suffer a cut while trekking, which is common.
Yemen is rife with polio and malaria. Polio may be found in certain Red Sea coastal communities, while malaria can be found in low-lying regions along the Red Sea.