Wild Wild East. 7 best places for outdoor activities in UAE
March 30, 20192137
Many UAE are associated with skyscrapers and hotels – but the natural scenery here is no less beautiful: from dunes and deserts to mountains and Wadi. In recent years, there have been many places for outdoor activities, Hiking and trendy glamping. We selected the best.
Hutta today – one of the most beautiful places where you can relax in nature and do outdoor activities. There are mountains, turquoise lakes and a variety of vegetation. This resort is located about 130 kilometers from Dubai. The road to the hutta is picturesque and calm: the first part of it lies between the sand dunes, the second – among the Hajar mountain range, in which, in turn, the hutta hid.
Among the attractions – the oldest surviving villages in the UAE, the reservoir and, of course, the mountains themselves and dramatic landscapes.
Recently, the resort has opened several affordable offers of luxury camping, and now there is no need to come here for one day. On the banks of the hutta dam is the first boutique hotel Hatta Sedr Trailers: all trailers are equipped with private terraces.
Here you can cook over a campfire or barbecue in the common area and access the observation deck with views of the dam and the surrounding mountains. In addition to trailers, you can stay at Hatta Damani Lodges – a quiet, simple houses right in the mountains. Both trailers and cabins are located next to the entertainment eco-hub Hatta Wadi, where archery, rope Park, mountain bike trail and zorbing are already available. Soon they will add another zipline for two, slides and a huge palm Park.
Bicycles can also be rented. There are several tracks for mountain bikes, divided into four levels of difficulty: green – the simplest, blue – moderate difficulty, red – complex, and black – extreme. The routes are marked with colored stones. But be careful – even simple routes require very good preparation. The tracks are narrow and rocky, and in some places go under a rather steep slope.
Starlight Camp UAE
Recently in the desert of Dubai appeared transparent tents from which you can look at the sky – Starlight Camp UAE. If you need somewhere to relax, but you do not want to fly anywhere, this glamping in the Dubai desert – what you need. Isn't it romantic to spend the night in a round tent overlooking the night sky?
Starlight Camp – a spacious camping tents (as much as 30 square meters!) with double bed, curtains, sink and mirror. Tents are about 45 minutes by car from Dubai international airport. There is an outdoor lounge, telescope, dining room, barbecue, kitchen facilities, toilet, shower, bluetooth speakers and electricity. You can come with Pets – they will only be happy.
The price of one night for two is 1800 dirhams. Free soft drinks, tea, coffee and Breakfast are included. The hosts will bring you to the camp in a jeep. If you arrive early enough, take a walk in the desert, where you can find gazelles, Oryx and camels. On the barbecue you can prepare your meals, and you can order dinner from the hosts to your taste. Do not forget to bring a couple of warm clothes – in the evenings it is cool in the desert.
Dinner in the desert, camping in the open air, watching the stars through a telescope among the dunes – all this awaits you in Mleich, a newly opened archaeological complex in the Emirate of Sharjah. The word "mleiha" translates from Arabic as "beautiful." The trip here will be both interesting and informative. You will be transported back to the past – according to modern archaeological data, people lived here already in the Paleolithic era (that is 130 thousand years ago). So, this is where the first homo sapiens settled, who left Africa and began to settle on the planet after the Ice age.
The main architectural attraction of Melliha is the ancient city of the same name, which is almost two thousand years old. He stood on the trade route connecting East and West. This nomadic city was one of the first land stops on the way between Abu Dhabi and other Emirates. It remained important for many years: Mleich found both Bedouin caravans on camels and modern cars.
Another mandatory item of the program – camping in the open air. You can recover and hike, which will take about six hours: you will climb two mountain peaks, visit the excavations of ancient cities, make some perfect landscape photos.
Mleiha plan to improve further and to turn into a zone of ecological tourism. Several hotels, camping grounds and an astronomical Observatory have already been opened here. It is also planned to open a desert Park with an area of 450 kilometers. Sharjah does not save on this project: it is planned to invest no less than 250 million dirhams (69 million dollars).
About 600 million years ago – in the so-called Cambrian period – from sea salt formed a dome, which later grew limestone and Sandstone. Thus came the island of Ser Bani Yas – one of the few non-art Islands in the Persian Gulf. Near the island were found fossils of elephants aged six million years. Apparently, they were among the first to leave their traces in the Arabian desert. Today, thanks to the special program of the late Sheikh Zayed, 40 thousand animals imported from Africa live on Sir Bani Yas, as well as more than 1.8 million trees and shrubs planted artificially. These attractions are not limited to the island: here was found an ancient Christian monastery of the late VI century, the only one in the UAE. For those who want to stay on the island longer nedano were built three luxury hotel chain Anantara. You can go sand surfing, falconry, archery, mountain Biking, kayaking and horse riding – and, of course, arrange a jeep Safari in the reserve. The island of Sir Bani Yas is part of the al-garbia region. It is located 250 kilometers southwest of Abu Dhabi. From the city you can get by car to Jebel Dhana, and then change to a water taxi or ferry. In addition, you can get to the island and direct – in the Bay there is a Marina, and a small landing path can land on a small plane or seaplane.
Emirate: Abu Dhabi
Where is the highest point of the UAE? If you call the tower of Burj Khalifa in Dubai, you will make a mistake about a thousand meters. The UAE is a flat country, but in its very North hid the Hajar mountain range, stretching to the territory of Oman. The top of Jebel Jais mountain is 1910 meters. There is an excellent serpentine trail to the top, and the views on the way will be as picturesque as on its top. Rocky mountains and Wadi are not only beautiful landscapes, but also the best places in the country for Hiking. Unlike desert dunes and pristine beaches, Hiking on Jebel Jais is an extreme sport. Until you get acquainted with these places properly, Hiking and mountain Biking is better as part of organized tour groups. Tour operators offer Hiking and Cycling tours of any complexity.
Emirate: RAS Al-Khaimah
Fujairah lies on the shores of the Gulf of Oman (Indian ocean) – is the only Emirate that has no access to the Persian Gulf. Instead of the desert there are mountains, and therefore it may seem that it is the complete opposite of the rest of the Emirates. And in many ways it is true. On the other hand, it is only two and a half hours by car from Dubai – and there is something to see.
For example, Wadi tayiba is a pleasant and tireless route: the old road along the East coast, North of Masafi. New roads have already been laid here, but the old ones are still used by local farmers and villagers working on small date farms. While walking you look at the lake, the traditional system of irrigation and the old village. You can also visit the famous fruit market (such delicious mangoes you will not buy anywhere else in the UAE). Also, the local Wadi is great for picnics – so pack a lunch basket and hit the road. You can Park in the village of al-Hala.
On the coast of Fujairah, especially in the North of the Emirate: near Haur Fakkan and Dibba - rich marine life. Divers and divers often meet sea turtles, sharks and rays, as well as huge shoals of fish. Most hotels in Fujairah have special offers for divers, in addition, the seaport of Dibba every day organizes cruises to the Musandam Peninsula.
This mountain we left in the end, because it is better suited for more experienced outdoor enthusiasts. Jebel hafit is located in al ain, just an hour and a half drive from Dubai, so you can go to the mountain one day. This is the third highest mountain in the UAE: its height is 1240 meters. It is quite steep, with a complex landscape, and climb it is not easy. Take with a stick for trekking, special shoes and a sufficient supply of water. We do not recommend to climb Jebel hafit in the middle of the day. Calculate the time so as to be on top at sunrise or sunset.
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