A desert city playground with a unique combination of Arabian culture, mega-malls and audacious architecture in a setting of year-round sun, sand and sea. Great family hotels and a ridiculous number of family attractions too.
Recommended place to stay:
Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa
Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE)|www.marriott.com|
Official star rating:
Splendidly set amongst the dramatic dunes of the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve – 45 minutes’ drive from the city – this luxurious and intimate eco-resort was inspired by a traditional Bedouin encampment.
But you won’t be roughing it – the only things resembling tents are the canopy roofs on the free-standing suites. Temperature-controlled private plunge pools have sweeping views of the spectacular desert, and the attention to detail is impressive, with thoughtful touches like in-room binoculars for spotting oryx.
Complimentary activities range from horse riding to desert safaris and falconry, along with memorable sunset camel rides and wildlife drives to see oryx. Wake early for a private dawn nature walk with the resident conservationist; later, indulge in a romantic dinner on your deck with the desert silence as the soundtrack.
Al Maha is certified by the Green Key eco-rating programme. The resort is committed to conservation and reducing its impact on the surrounding habitat.
Al Maha is set within the boundaries of the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve – a stunning landscape of red-tinged sand dunes populated by indigenous desert wildlife that has been reintroduced to the area.
The resort lies within a bank of dunes with wide views over the desert, where herds of oryx and gazelle can be spotted grazing.
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