If you’ve soaked up as much sun, sea and city as humanly possible, it’s time to venture outside of Dubai, and find out what the surrounding Emirates and Dubai’s borders can offer you. Ancient architecture, secret swimming spots and fine dining is there to be found, once you know where to go.
Take a trip to Musandam, where wild, craggy peaks of limestone mountains guard turquoise snorkelling spots. Watch wild dolphins, bask in the sun, and soak up the quiet magic of the Arabian peninsula. While you’re in Musandam, pass through Khasab, the main coastal town, and lose yourself in 16th century forts and tradition Arabian architecture.
Go from wild and wonderful, to peaceful beauty: the Hajjar Mountains should top anyone’s list, while Fujairah’s coastline will take your breath away. The Hajjar Moutains are home to Hatta, a village that boasts the oldest fort in the UAE, and a place of interest to many who pass through – historians or not! Fujairah’s fine dining is worth trying if you’re in the area, as is a trip to the Kalba Mangroves. Explore the protected area, preserved for its intricate eco-systems and legions of plant, bird and fish species. Guided tours on foot or kayak are available, as are special turtle watching tours.
Visit the third largest Emirate and the UAE’s cultural capital, Sharjah. You’ll be able to wander around the beautifully restored ancient city, and its array of museums, boasting collections unique to the Emirate, and the UAE. Shop at one of the world’s most idyllic locations: the Blue Souk borders Sharjah’s lagoon, and when you’re not dipping in and out of the souk’s 500 shops, you can soak up the atmosphere while soaking up the sun.
Jordan’s Dead Sea is a spot not to miss: with excessive amounts of salt in the water, and natural buoyancy, you can lie back and relax in this special stretch of water. Float freely around the extended lake, letting the water do the work for you.
The peninsula of Umm Al Quwain is idyllic: perfect for experienced divers to first-time snorkelers, enjoy the warm, blue waters and the abundance of tropical marine life. Swim with reef sharks and green turtles in one of the most undisturbed areas of coastline, or explore the island of Sinaiyah: the closest you’ll find to a desert island paradise.
No matter what your interests are, what budget you have, and how flexible your time-scale is, you’ll find something perfect in the Emirates surrounding Dubai.