There’s no better place to go over the top than the United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a country that offers a dazzling array of attractions for visitors, from the futuristic skyscrapers of Dubai to the rich cultural heritage of Abu Dhabi, but beyond the well-known landmarks and popular activities, there are also some hidden gems that deserve your attention. Here are 10 under-the-radar experiences that you can have in the UAE, whether you are looking for adventure, art, nature, or something else.

Experience a festival-inspired desert retreat at Terra Solis

If you love electronic dance music and luxury glamping, you will enjoy Terra Solis, a festival-inspired desert retreat that runs from October 2022 to April 2023. Located in the Dubai desert, Terra Solis offers a range of accommodation options, from tents and lodges to villas and suites, all with access to a central pool and entertainment area. You can enjoy live performances by world-class DJs, as well as activities like yoga, meditation, wellness workshops, and desert safaris.

Play sports on the roof of Burj al Arab

One of Dubai’s most iconic hotels is also one of its tallest. The Burj al Arab stands at over 200 metres above the Arabian sea and features a rooftop helipad that can be converted into any sporting space you can imagine. Whether you want to play tennis, golf, cricket, or even box, you can do it on top of this luxury hotel with stunning views of the city and the ocean. You will need to book in advance and be prepared to pay a hefty price, but it will be an unforgettable experience.

Explore Hatta by helicopter

Hatta is a small village in the eastern part of Dubai that offers a contrast to the urban hustle and bustle. Surrounded by mountains and lakes, Hatta is a natural paradise where you can enjoy hiking, biking, kayaking, and other outdoor activities. The best way to get there is by helicopter, which will give you a scenic view of the skyscrapers, deserts, and mountains along the way. You can also stay overnight at JA Hatta Fort, a luxury hotel that blends in with the landscape.

Dive into an underwater city at Deep Dive Dubai

If you are looking for an aquatic adventure, head to Deep Dive Dubai, the world’s deepest swimming pool that spans depths of 60 metres. The pool is shaped like a giant oyster and resembles a post-apocalyptic underwater city, complete with sound and lighting systems that create various moods and scenarios. You can explore the pool with or without diving equipment, depending on your level of experience. You will also find an onsite restaurant, shop, and lounge where you can relax after your dive.

Flights to Dubai, UAE

Craft your own signature scent at Perfume House

Perfume is an important part of the culture and personal rituals in the Middle East, and you can learn more about it at Perfume House in Abu Dhabi. This museum is dedicated to the history and art of perfume making in the region, showcasing rare ingredients, tools, and bottles from different eras. You can also create your own signature scent with the help of expert perfumers who will guide you through the process of blending different aromas.

Visit an oasis in the desert at Al Ain

Al Ain is one of the oldest inhabited places in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also known as the Garden City of the Gulf because of its lush greenery and natural springs. You can visit Al Ain Oasis, a 3,000-acre palm plantation that dates back thousands of years and uses a traditional irrigation system. You can also explore Al Ain’s historical and cultural attractions, such as Al Jahili Fort, Al Ain Palace Museum, Al Ain Zoo, and Jebel Hafeet Mountain.

Experience Emirati culture at Al Fanar Restaurant

If you want to taste authentic Emirati cuisine and learn about its traditions, Al Fanar Restaurant is the place to go. This restaurant has branches in Dubai and Abu Dhabi and serves dishes that reflect the heritage and lifestyle of the UAE before the oil boom. You can try specialties like machboos (rice with meat or fish), harees (wheat porridge with meat), and luqaimat (sweet dumplings). The restaurant also recreates the atmosphere of a typical Emirati village, with traditional décor, music, and costumes.

Shop for local crafts at Souk Al Arsah

Souk Al Arsah is one of the oldest souks in the UAE and a great place to find local handicrafts, antiques, and souvenirs. Located in Sharjah, this souk is housed in a restored building that reflects the architecture and design of the past. You can browse through stalls selling carpets, jewellery, pottery, spices, and more. You can also chat with the friendly vendors who will tell you stories about their products and the history of the souk.

Watch flamingos at Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary

Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary is a wetland reserve in Dubai that hosts a variety of migratory birds, especially flamingos. You can watch these pink beauties from three viewing hides that are open to the public from October to March. You can also spot other birds like herons, egrets, storks, and ducks, as well as mammals like foxes and gazelles. The sanctuary is also a great place to learn about the importance of conservation and biodiversity in the UAE.

Ride a camel at Al Wathba Camel Race Track

Camel racing is a traditional sport in the UAE that showcases the skills and endurance of these desert animals. You can witness this exciting spectacle at Al Wathba Camel Race Track in Abu Dhabi, where races are held on weekends from October to April. You can also ride a camel yourself and experience the thrill of being on top of these gentle giants. You will also learn about the history and culture of camel racing and how it has evolved over time.

Hotels in Dubai, UAE

ENS Editors

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