If you follow my personal Instagram account @daniwilsonnaqvi - you will see that my family and I love to go on adventures and having had to stay in Dubai all summer due to the pandemic – we really had to embrace more than ever our adventurous side and not let the Dubai heat stop us from exploring.
After being in “lockdown” all we wanted to do was be outdoors, try to get some fresh air and exercise. Any other year and we would have been traveling from late June, however due to the big C, in March I cancelled all our trips – (if I’m honest I personally had a lot planned – more than we did as a family so I was gutted) but its out of our control so we decided we were going to make the most of being in the UAE.
So let me share with you some of our UAE adventures. Living by my new motto - don’t let the weather stop you from making plans, in this new era, we have to learn to simply pivot and adjust to the new norm.
1. Kite Beach Centre UAQ
Transported to Tulum the minute you step on the beach.
Just over an hour from Dubai, Kite Beach Centre UAQ is the perfect laid back rustic beach vibe that you’re going to find in the UAE.
Expect wooden duplex cabanas, crystal clear water, wooden swings in the ocean and an array of water sports. Plus good news for dog owners – you can take your dogs too!
There’s a great café serving a selection of F&B.
The cabanas are pretty cool and a perfect way to stay out of the sun. Designed in a duplex style the top level is a seating area offering great views and the deck level comes with seating, a hammock and a shower.
Entrance during the week is AED 25 per person and weekends AED 50 per person
Cabanas rental during the week AED 250 and weekends AED 350
Cabana cost is additional to the entrance fee
Book via their Whatsapp - +971 55 5073060
2. Hatta Wadi’s
Just before you arrive at Hatta Dam there’s a small bridge and a narrow ravine which offers freezing cold running water. In the early morning heat and humidity these pools were not only refreshing to play in but so much fun for the kids. Obviously an adult should be with the kids at all times as the water runs fast and getting in and out can be slippery but its really a lot of fun.
Then back in the car and up to the Dam. If you’re there early enough you can take out of the kayaks or paddle boats – yes its hot and yes its sweaty as there is no shade but its something different and so picturesque.
Then I highly recommended popping over to Hatta Fort Hotel for a pool day and lunch. Entrance fee for pool is AED 90 Adults AED 45 children
And now that its cooler there’s so much fun to be had at the hotel from archery, zip lining and wall climbing. Check out their website
3. Hiking Wadi Shawka, RAQ
My husband found this hidden gem a couple of years ago when he would go trail running for his training and has been insisting the kids try it. Its approx. 1.15 mins from Dubai and is easy to find via Google Maps.
Wadi Shawka is a popular hiking destination in Ras-al-Khaimah and is considered to be an exploration hike because the trail offers an all-in-one experience like off-road drives, pool dips, natural springs, greenery and the mountains.
The hike is marked out but there’s lots of lose rocks so be careful. Along the way you will find lots of areas to take a break and check out the view of the Dam and mountains and take in the fresh air. Due to the heat the kids and I haven’t been to the top yet but we will now that the weather is cooler.
Keep an eye out for the mountain goats, donkeys and the odd camel. Make sure you take lots of refreshments as there’s nowhere in the area to get anything.
You will see a lot of people at the foot of the mountains next to the natural springs camping – unfortunately I’m a glamper not a camper so I haven’t experienced this!
If you like off-roading and wild mountains you can have a lot of fun!
4. Al Rabi Hiking Trail, Khorfakkan
We hadn’t been to this spot before and wanted to climb early morning before it got to hot. It’s approx. 1.5 hours from Dubai. With clear sign posts to the foot of the trail is a great kid friendly hike, but do keep a watchful eye out as parts do get steep with loose rocks. It took us over an hour to get to the top – we were rushing due to the heat and the view from the top didn’t disappoint - its awesome overlooking the sea and the city. It’s a great way to get the kids back into nature and of course good exercise.
We will go back in the winter and take our time doing the hike and maybe even have a picnic – but I’m not carrying it!!
5. Paddle Boarding, Dubai
We actually have our own mega paddleboard, which we keep, in our garden and often we put it on the roof of the car and drive to the beach. Our favorite spot is right next to Four Seasons Hotel as this part of the beach has been corned off for kayaking/paddle boarding etc
During the summer we would be at the beach by 7am, the water would be calm and the beach was quiet which was perfect for the kids to practice.
If you don’t have your own board, not to worry as you can book a paddle boarding session at @Ignitesuface located at RIVA Beach Club on the Palm.
Call +97152 2495311
Newly opened in RAK:
The Bear Grylls Explorers Camp is located in Jebel Jais, the ideal location for challenging adventurers with its stunning mountainous terrain. Find out more
Check out all the outdoor adventures in RAK from mountain trekking to the world’s longest Zip Line on https://visitrasalkhaimah.com/