Hey! There are hundreds of places to go in Dubai, events, new restaurants, beaches but sometimes it’s good to get away for a couple of days! It makes you appreciate Dubai even more! There are lots of places to go to when you live in the UAE but I wanted to share with you my favourite places. Hope you like it!
1. QASR AL SARAB DESERT RESORT ANANTARA
This place is just spectacular! An oasis in the middle of Abu Dhabi desert. We stayed at Al Qasr al Sarab between Christmas and New year with the family and that was just incredible! The hotel is located in the middle of the desert and it is one of the most beautiful hotel I have ever stayed at. We relaxed at the pool in the afternoon, watched the sunset and had a delicious diner at the italian restaurant. Our bedroom was stunning, the view from our balcony was just surreal and the balcony was absolutely huge. I I woke up early to watch the sunrise from the top of the dunes...just magical.
A place NOT TO MISS !
Tip: You can borrow sand boards for free from the gym. If you want to do the camel ride book in advance as it gets fully booked.
2. MUSANDAM KHASAB
A weekend spent in Khasab is a must when you live in Dubai. So glad I finally did it after 6 years in Dubai! You can opt for an organised day trip from Dubai but I would recommend to stay overnight as it is quite a long drive, 3h from Dubaï with a stop at the border to get the tourist visa. The drive is a bit long but you see lots of camels and goats on the side of the road and once you cross the Omani border, the view is just stunning!
We stayed at Atana Musandam Resort (The new one, I booked through hotels.com) and it was just perfect. We spent the afternoon chilling at the infiniti pool and watched the sunset from our balcony.
In the morning Khasab tours came to pick us from the hotel and we did the cruise on the fjords (half day). We saw so many dolphins swimming right next to our boat, just magical ! We did snorkelling and came back in slow pace admiring the landscape. We came back around 12, had lunch, visited Khasab castle (worth a visit by the way) and drove back to Dubai.
Tip: Get your Omani visa in advance as it is compulsory now and you can get an Omani insurance for your car for 100 aed at the border in case you forgot to do it before.
3. GLAMPING IN HATTA
Perfect outdoor escape in a breathtaking location with lots of activities : kayaking, hiking, mountain biking, Honeybee farm visit...but I just loved going glamping, it was a first time for me and it was amazing!
The place is called Hatta Sedr Trailers. It’s 1h30 drive from Dubai and perfect for the ones who like adventure but comfort as well. The view is absolutely stunning! In the middle of the mountains and it feels so peaceful. There is beautiful view point at the end of the site up the stairs.
The trailer Caravan was really modern, luxurious and cosy, it had all the facilities (aircon, blow dryer, kettle, tea, coffee, small bottle of water, towels, slippers, lovely deck area with comfy chairs, own bbq...). There was a double bed and the sofa bed was great for our 2 years old! So comfy! We were prepared so we had everything with us. Cool box with plenty of meat and drinks :) If you don’t want to bring your own you can order food from the food truck there is a choice of breakfast, burgers...
Staff was just amazing, smiley, helpful and professional. We watched the sunset, saw so many shooting stars and a beautiful sunrise too. We did an hour of paddling boat in the morning, we just booked 20min before and that was great! We will be back! Most unique place to recharge your batteries far from the city life!
Tip 1: Take your own food and drinks & have a bbq in the evening. There is a food truck there but that’s it.
The only thing missing was a big bin bag, cutlery and plates.
Tip 2: It’s always fully booked on the weekend so book a weekday.
4. ZAYA NURAI
Zaya Nurai is the Maldives of Abu Dhabi. A private island resort located close to Saadyat island so 50 minutes from Dubai. You can stay there but it’s pretty expensive so we went there for the day and that was just perfect. We bought a day pass on myconcierge.com for 480 aed with the speedboat and dining credit included. Not cheap but worth it and we had enough for snacks, lunch and a few drinks. There are 2 main beach clubs on the island. One is bigger and more family orientated. The other one Smokin’ Pineapple on the other side of the island was my favourite, smaller pool but amazing view, teepees, boho decor, private beautiful beach and the famous water swings. Perfect getaway!
Tip: Leave early as it gets busy quickly. We took the speedboat around 9 AM so we were one of the first on the island.
5. SNOOPY ISLAND FUJEIRAH
Another stunning place to spend the weekend. 2h drive from Dubai, I just loved Snoopy island. The landscape is beautiful, the view stunning, the water crystal clear and the colour of the sand is very dark which makes the beach so unique. You can rent snorkels to go snorkelling and you can even swim to snoopy island, we didn’t do it as we had Charlie but next time. We stayed at Sandy beach hotel and Resort comfortable and the room was cheap and the view absolutely stunning. We saw the most beautiful sunset and sunrise (the ups of having a baby :). I would definitely go back to this place!
Tip: Take your snorkels with you
6. BAB AL SHAMS
Bab Al Shams of course! Only 50 min drive from Dubai it makes the perfect desert getaway. When we arrived there, we saw lots of gazelles, just magical. The place feels authentic and beautiful, different than the bling bling hotels from Dubai. It makes you feel you are in the « 1001 nights » with its stunning Arabic courtyards, several pools...And you can ride a camel in the evening for the total cultural experience. Don’t miss the sunset from Al Sarab rooftop. Love Bab Al Shams!
Tip: you can use entertainer for the pool access and buffet too, buy one get one free.
On my wishlist:
Jebel Hafeet Desert Park
Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island
Arabian nights village Abu Dhabi
Telal Resort Al Ain
Al Maha desert resort
Al Bait Sharjah
Jumeirah Etihad tower Abu Dhabi
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