Dubai is already the entertainment hub of the world and with new developments surpassing its own benchmarks; it is rapidly becoming a favorite city for the travelers. While there is not dearth of great activities to be done and record breaking landmarks to be seen, Dubai earlier fell short on the expectations of adventure junkies. In no time, it was realized and now with great reforms and spectacular activities that can give a boost to the adrenaline rush is a part of this entertainment hub.
Covering all- the land, sea and air, the best outdoor activities in Dubai are listed here.
Dubai is home to one of the best skyscrapers and manmade islands in the world, and the best way to look at them and admire their beauty is by skydiving. Get on the sky and jump to plunge down at a top speed to admire the landscape of the city and test your rush. Skydiving is conducted at Dubai Marina and jump on the sky above the Palm Jumeirah. No worries if you are not a trained sky diver, if you have the guts, Dubai have the means. You can enjoy this experience being strapped to an instructor as well.
Where: Skydive Dubai, off Al Sufouh Road, Dubai Marina
When: All round the year
How much: $545 onwards
2. Desert Camps
Not every outdoor activity needs to be spine chilling. Some are meant to simply relax and admire the beauty. One such activity is enjoying desert camping in the calm, vast desert of Dubai. Just off the city limits, enjoy basic camp setups and explore the beauty of the rolling sand dunes. The camps are basic but the experience is worth remembering. The popular places for desert camping are Shwaib, Dubai conservation reserve, and desert near the Al Ain highway. Amongst these Shwaib gets most camps. It is hardly an hour and a half from the city and tourists can enjoy barbeque dinners while gazing at the starry sky.
Where: Various local operators offer services. Even if you don’t own camping gears, no problem, they provide that too.
When: All round the year.
How much: overnight camping trip starting from $195/ person.
3. Off-road Biking
Yes, you read right. Dubai is not only about soft sand dunes and contemporary architectures. It’s a perfect place to be for the mountain bikers who like to travel off road. Running east of the city of Dubai is the Hajjar Mountains, loved by off roaders there are many trails to be tackled. In fact, an exclusive company called ‘HotCog’ works for this sport especially for expat mountain bikers who wish to ride through the 70 km trip of adventurous trail. Filled with narrow paths, wadi beds and yes, animals, Hajjar Mountains of Dubai offer you a perfect mix of challenges and thrills.
Where: Guided bike rides by different operators.
When: All round the year
How much: Rides starting from $100
4. Reef, Scuba and wreck diving
Grabbing the attention of divers, the red sea along the Middle Eastern coastline is increasingly getting popular for its underwater diving experience. Enjoy good wreck dives a few miles into the sea and discover sparse reefs too. A popular color hanging fish spot is the Anchor that formed reef in the 1998. A cargo ship that bottomed in the year 2006 also makes for a good underwater experience. Spend some time looking for the amazing sea animals like scorpion fish, parrot fish, turtles and moray eels etc.
Where: Various diving institutes and organisations like Al Boom Diving.
When: All Year round
How much: Starting at $95 with Equipments included
Not many are aware that Dubai also has sea kayaking coming up in a big way. The Arabian Peninsula coast has spectacular arenas for a great kayaking experience. In fact, across the UAE there are various great arenas for Kayaking. For example, on the west coast in the Umm Al- Quwain and Abudhabi emirates, Musandam coast around Dibba, and along the east coast of Khor- Kalba. These places not only offer enjoyable kayaking but also amazing bird watching experience too.
Where: Local Kayaking operators offering half, full and multi day kayaking trips.
When: All year round
How much: Starting at $135/ person
6. Hot Air Balloon rides
The best way to admire the desert of Dubai is to climb up the hot air balloon in the early hours of the morning. The view is so spectacular that it is hard to describe in words. Not only does the ride give you abundant enjoyment, it gives you a view of the Dubai desert like nowhere else. The best time to take the hot air balloon ride is during winters when the temperature is just right for it to fly. The rides can be booked easily and many operators club with desert safaris along with offering a pick up drop from your place of stay.
Where: Specialized Hot air balloon operators.
When: From September 1st till May 31st
How much: Approximately $245
7. Sand Dune Bashing on Desert Safari
4×4 Dubai Desert Safari is a perfect option if you are looking for some stomach churning adventure. Ride through the wadi beds, gravel plains and terrain surfaces to enjoy skidding down the sands and bashing the dunes. This couple hour ride is definitely not for the faint hearted. But those who brave it, it is a lifetime experience and mostly they come back for more. One of the most popular adventure sports of Dubai, no trip to Dubai is complete without the desert safari.
Where: Local tour operators conduct innumerable tours with various inclusions and exclusions.
When: All year round
How much: Starting at $53/ person
8. Skateboarding, Kite surfing and boat peddling
Catch waves at the marina beach and beat the heat while playing with water through skate boarding and kite surfing. If you are not too much in love with water, enjoy the Dubai city views while boat peddling. Whatever way you choose, enjoying on the shores and in the sea is definitely a must try while in Dubai.
Where: Marina beach
When: All year round, especially popular in summers.
How much: Starting at $55 per person
Dubai holds countless activities and attractions that beckon you to visit the captivating city again and again. From the super luxurious to the dangerously adventurous; tranquility to spine chilling, Dubai offers a perfect getaway for travelers of all genres.