The world’s largest dhow, Obaid, is soon going to set sail from Dubai for the Pakistani port of Karachi, in an Emirati man’s attempt to fulfill his late father’s dream. Majid Obaid Al-Falasi is planning to pursue his father’s dream and set sail for Karachi in two months to reach the port where his father built the first boat four decades ago.
The dhow was certified by the Guinness World Records as the biggest traditional lateen-rigged coastal Arab sailing vessel. It was named after Emirati shipbuilder Obaid Jumaa bin Majid Al-Falasi.
“In 1975 my father went to Karachi and built a boat there which was even then the biggest boat in Pakistan, and named it Al-Fateh,” said the chief executive of shipbuilding company Obaid bin Jumaa bin Suloom, which was founded by his father in 1972.
“It all started from Karachi after which my father started making dhows here in Dubai. He made over 2,500 dhows in his lifetime,” Al-Falasi said.
Karachi-made Al-Fateh was completed in 1976, after which the pioneer shipbuilder returned to the UAE. Al-Falasi recalled how the boat bewildered everyone when it docked in Dubai.