With iconic skyline, high-class shopping malls and bustling nightlife, there is still more to Dubai than its man-made attractions. If you’re planning to visit Dubai, be sure to explore the hidden landscapes of United Arab Emirates. From sandy plains flanked by rugged mountains to lush date palm trees in the middle of an oasis, the best can be seen during short drives from Dubai.
Located in the Hajar Mountains, Hatta is about three hours drive from Dubai City. Dubai expatriates and locals set up tents and barbecue to camp during the winter. There is no worry even if you’re visiting the city in summers – consider staying at the chalets in Hatta Fort Hotel, where you’ll still enjoy the serenity of the mountains from your private balcony. Drive to the Hatta Dam, which calls for some postcard-like pictures, and Hatta Pools to soak in the blue water springs. If driving isn’t your style, sign up for Hatta Mountain Safari for an ultimate off-road experience.
Standing tall at an elevation of 1,249 m, Jebel Hafeet offers dramatic views of Al Ain city. The road to Jebel Hafeet comprises 60 turns winding to the mountaintop that has a parking lot, a hotel, and a palace. Jebel Hafeet is not just a tourist attraction; it is also considered a favorite spot for cyclists. From here, you’ll get to see Green Mubazzarah, a green valley famous for hot springs.
Rent a car and explore the fjords of Musandham through Khasab. A few hotels in Dubai also offer a package tour to Musandham depending on your preferences for a day trip or weekend trip. The Musandham Peninsula straddles on the Strait of Hormuz, bordering Oman and the United Arab Emirates. With spectacular views of the sea and mountains, visitors have plenty of adventurous options like scuba diving, snorkeling, and fishing.
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Just a three-hour drive from Dubai, hop onto the Dhow Cruise in Dibba that offers a traditional Arabian experience for those who’d also want to explore the nearby villages. If you are driving a 4×4, Wadi Khab Shamsi is another interesting place to visit. You can also try other outdoor activities such as rock climbing, mountain biking, and kayaking. A road trip to Dibba requires an entry to Oman, so make sure you’re carrying your passport at all times.
Jabal Al Jais
Considered the tallest mountain in UAE, Jabal Al Jais stands at an altitude of 1,910 m. For Jabal Al Jais, you’ll have to pass Ras Al Khaimah, where you must stop to tank up as there are no gas stations or restaurants ahead. It is highly advisable to drive a 4×4 to reach the summit of Jabal Al Jais. After a 20-minute drive, you’ll find dirt track along the rocky edges that can be dangerous if you’re not an experienced driver.
With year-round sunshine, beaches, mountains, and deserts, the best way to explore Dubai is by road.
This post is published as part of the Hipmunk City Love Project.
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