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  • The Museum parking area and nearby public parking areas are available (relatively few)
  • Do not self drive to museums and heritage sites as they are located in crowded old city areas and parking is a scarcity there; you are rather advised to use public transport.
  • Wear easy to slip in and out footwear as many places would need you to remove your footwear.

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Head out into the desert to explore the dunes on a safari drive and gain an insight into this beautiful and barren landscape The Arabian desert is one of the greatest in the world, covering a vast span of land that reaches from Yemen to Oman on the tip of the peninsula all the way to Jordan and Iraq. At the heart of this great expanse is the Rub’ Al Khali, otherwise known as the Empty Quarter.

The huge body of sand is a harsh, arid environment, home only to the hardiest of species, and once, to the Bedouin tribes that used to roam this region. Here, is where many of the UAE’s ancestors eeked out a living, surviving in extreme conditions with very little food or water to sustain them. Today, those difficult times are long gone and the UAE’s residents enjoy a prosperous lifestyle but their nomadic ancestry and their desert roots remain ever present in the culture of contemporary society. For visitors to the country there can be few better ways to gain an understanding of this heritage than by taking a trip to the desert.

Arabian Adventures is one of several local tour companies that runs excursions into the desert. The company offers a range of tours and experiences including the Sundowner dining trip, during which guests enjoy a Middle Eastern feast at a traditional-style Bedouin camp in the heart of the desert.

Desert Safari Dubai is another experienced local tour company that specializes in trips through the dunes, including a quick Morning Safari option for those who don’t have time to spend the whole day there. Additional activities available on the desert trips include camel riding, sandboarding and quad biking among the dunes. Visitors who really want to immerse themselves in the Bedouin lifestyle can try an overnight safari experience.

The Arabian Village in Abu Dhabi has been built to recreate the atmosphere of a traditional desert encampment and offers guests a chance to leave the modern world behind and sleep under the stars. Accommodation options range from simple barasti huts and tents to the more luxurious wind tower rooms. There’s also a swimming pool and a restaurant so it’s not a complete departure from modern luxuries but it does offer a sense of solitude and an understanding of what it was like to wake up in the middle of the desert with nothing but sand dunes for miles around.

A high-end take on the desert safari is available through Platinum Heritage, which specializes in luxury tours and experiences. Private dinners for two under a canopy amid the dunes and private falcon shows are among the specialized activities on offer. There’s also a night safari and stargazing trip, which takes in the beautiful view of the night sky from the dunes and offers a different perspective on this dramatic and beautiful landscape.