Dubai Post 14: Desert Safari, Dubai’s Ultimate Tourist Attraction
|Ali and his hummer, our desert vessel.
|Ali helped all the guys tie ghuttra's around their head.
This past Saturday a co-worker invited everyone to a desert safari that she was planning. This was on my list of things to do in Dubai so I could not refuse. More importantly, these are the types of activities you want to do before July and August when temperatures can reach upwards of 130 degrees Fahrenheit. An average trek to the desert lasts about 6 – 7 hours total but you can choose an option to spend a night in the desert as well.
Our Emirati driver picked us up in the mid afternoon in his hummer. We left the city of Dubai and headed out to the first camp. In between the first camp and Dubai there was literally nothing to see but sand. There was a few remnants of the real estate crash as many building sites looked untouched for a while. This site, however, is very common in Dubai. Construction sites litter the strip of Dubai, some being worked on and some underfunded and incomplete.
|A view of Adam, Mario, Lexy and I at the first camp with
desert in the background.
|A view of the desert and the Emirati flag.
When we arrived at the first camp we were able to ride ATVs, camels, and horses, or just take in the sights of the wandering animals. One of our friends, Mario, decided to ride a horse. We saw him gallop into the sun behind a dune, only to see the horse, a minute later, sprinting back with no Mario in sight. Two workers had to go out and rescue him from the desert heat. (It was not as bad as it sounds, it was actually hilarious.)
|Mario and his horse who ditched him.
| A camel at the camp. Along the way you could see
farms and even wild camels.
Then came the most exciting part of the trip: dune bashing. Hoards of safari jeeps swarm the desert and give their passengers a roller coaster ride they will never forget. Passengers are sent flying from their seats as the car goes up and down over the sand dunes. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately), I was in a hummer so it was not as intense as a safari jeep because it did not have a roll cage. I will definitely be trying it again in the jeep safari to get the full effect.
|A view of a number of cars that are part of a tour.
|A view through the front as the hummer glides over a dune.
|Set of mountains far in the distance.
|The sun pounds the desert sand midday.
After an hour or two of heart racing thrills, you will head to a traditional Bedouin tent/village for an Arabic style dinner as you can enjoy customary belly dancers. I was with a few British guys, so of course they managed to find the only bar in the middle of the desert. Yet, it made for a great ending to a fantastic day.
|A lone safari jeep heads into the desert.
|Our group eating dinner at the Bedouin village.
|With very little light in the desert, the moon illuminates the sky.