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{UAE} Dubai Desert Safari

Another one of our memorable trips was to Dubai in UAE. We visited one of Shirl’s best friends, Ling, who lives in Abu Dhabi for our July 4th vacation in 2009. It was about a 1.5 hour ride by cab from Abu Dhabi to Dubai. We had a tight schedule so all we did in Dubai that was a desert safari trip.

[bq_left]Hold on tight as the driver of the SUV you’re in drives around the desert like  a mad man![/bq_left]

It was our first time riding on a camel, dune bashing, sandboarding in the desert and dining under the stars in the middle of the desert while being entertained by a belly dancer! All this was made possible by a desert safari adventure hosted by the Oasis Palm Company. Another tour company to consider is One World. Oasis Palm & One World are the two companies recommended by our friends who lives in UAE.

The tour starts off at about 3:00pm in the afternoon and returns around 9:00pm – 10:00pm at night. You will be picked up at a hotel/local destination within the city in Dubai. They’ll then drive you to the desert. On the way there, they’ll stop by some souvenir stores for you to pick up souvenirs as well as supplies (e.g. water, hats, ice cream, sunscreen, drinks) and from then on… that’s when the adventure starts! Hold on tight as the driver of the SUV you’re in drives around the desert like  a mad man! I’m not kidding when I say he drives like a man man – it’s what dune bashing is all about!

After a heart-stopping ride across the desert, the group of SUVs (there were about 10 SUVs at the time when we were there) would stop for tourists to take pictures, enjoy the desert, look at camels (free-roaming) and try out sand-boarding..

We also got to ride a camel (for about $20) for a few minutes during one of the stops. If you go on this tour, do know that there will also be a chance to ride camels when you get to the ‘camp’ where you will have your all-you-can-eat dinner. You will see stations (notice the huts) surrounding the center stage where you can get souvenirs, drinks, henna etc… at the ‘camp’.

Here are pictures of our desert safari adventure…

Oasis Palm jeep used for desert safari in Dubai

Dune bashing in Dubai desert

Dune bashing in Dubai desert

Free roaming camels in Dubai desert


Picture of us riding a camel

[/two] [two_last]

Photo of camel in Dubai Desert


Picture of us and the camel we rode.

Picture of the camp where we had dinner.

Picture of the henna on my hand.

[two]Picture of hand made souvenir[/two] [two_last]Picture of hand made souvenirs[/two_last]

Picture of our dinner

Picture of belly dancer

picture of belly dancer

Picture of ourselves and a friend at the desert

Picture of us at the desert


[two]WEATHER Turn up your oven to about 350 F, then stand in front of it and open the oven door. The rush of hot air that you feel… that’s how hot it was in Dubai. We were lucky however because on the day we were at the desert, it got a little cloudy, so the sun was not shining straight down at us![/two] [two_last]CAMELS You feel a sense of calm when photographing these animals. They move so calmly across the desert, minding their own business. Riding the camel was another interesting experience. They are TALL animals! Hold on tight if you’re on one![/two_last]

[two]SANDBOARDING Must try! It’s a lot like snow boarding except that the dunes are rather small, so you go straight down… no fancy turns like you can do in the snow. Keep your head up, look forward and let the board take you down the dune. [/two] [two_last]ALL YOU CAN EAT DINNER Don’t expect fine dining. Food was reasonable (macaroni & cheese, bbq, rice, roti, etc…). It was also a fun experience dining in the middle of the desert while being entertained by a talented belly dancer.[/two_last]

{our photo gallery located here}

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  1. Wear sandals! No closed toe shoes – you’ll regret it. Sand WILL get into your shoes and if you’re wearing closed toe shoes, it’ll be rather annoying!
  2. Bring a hat, shades/sunglasses, sunscreen and a bottle of water. TIP: Fill it up with water and freeze it in the freezer the day before. It’ll melt as you go through the day but you start out with ice cold water at the very least!
  3. Desert Safari is a MUST DO if you’re in Abu Dhabi, Dubai or it’s viccinity.
  4. Give sandboarding a try.
  5. Bring a napkin/towel/handkerchielf – you WILL sweat.
  6. Make a reservation ahead of time to ensure a spot and to arrange a meeting place for the pickup. [/notification]


  1. Logi October 29, 2017 Reply

    Impressive and very touchy post with facts of Dubai. I have been staying here from last two years and what i name this city really a city of wonders.
    Logi recently posted..Top Things to do in Dubai – Must add in Your PlanMy Profile

  2. Desert Safari Dubai July 27, 2013 Reply

    The Wild Wadi Water Park is an outdoor water park in Dubai. Wild Wadi has a heated/cooled wave pool, multiple water slides and two artificial surfing machines. In addition, the park had the largest water slide outside of North America, but recently it was removed to make space for two other rides . Another feature of the park is an 18 m (59 ft) waterfall that goes off every ten minutes. The water park also has two gift shops, three restaurants and two snack stands.
    It was featured in The Amazing Race 5 and The Amazing Race Asia 1, in which teams had to slide down a 21 m (69 ft) drop. It was later featured in The Amazing Race Australia 2, but instead, the teams had to ride the Surf Machine and use boogie boards to surf their way to the end where they will get their next clue.

  3. Abu dhabi desert safari December 7, 2012 Reply

    Abu Dhabi desert safari is not just adventure but there are you have got experience by driving 4*4 and riding camel.It is very inspiring place.

  4. M Amjad Ali November 15, 2012 Reply

    first time checking out your blog! great stuff.
    love the camel photos on this post .but please give more info about Desert Safari.

  5. Jamie Davy April 26, 2011 Reply

    first time checking out your blog! great stuff.
    love the camel photos on this post.
    one thing you didnt mention about sandboarding is that you get to eat a lot of sand!!

    • Author
      April 26, 2011 Reply

      Thanks Jamie! LOL – that’s a good point – KEEP YOUR MOUTH CLOSED as you’re going downhill and as you’re climbing back up the sand dune! I got a mouthful when I fell on my way up. Good times!

  6. Michael Figueiredo April 23, 2011 Reply

    First of all–gorgeous photos! I really want to visit Dubai someday and riding a camel is a must. I like how you listed tips at the bottom. Great idea!

    • Author
      April 25, 2011 Reply

      Thanks for stopping by Michael! Dubai also has the world’s largest indoor ski “resort” (it’s actually inside a mall!). We didn’t have time to give it a go but we did see it and that’s on our list of TODO next time we head to Dubai. You should give it a go on your trip to Dubai! Good to know the tips are helpful. We’ll keep it up – thank you for the feedback.

  7. Christy & Kali April 21, 2011 Reply

    Beautiful photos! I just discovered your blog and am loving it so far. Dubai sounds like such an interesting place to travel; we’ll definitely have to put it on our list. 🙂

    • Author
      April 21, 2011 Reply

      Thanks for dropping by! We have a lot more posts planned, so stay tuned! Definitely do let us know when you write your post on Dubai after visiting!!! 🙂

  8. Lisa
    April 11, 2011 Reply

    I love your site, it’s so well done. This sounds like a great trip.

    • Shirlene Lim April 11, 2011 Reply

      Thanks Lisa! I’m glad you like the site! Hopefully our posts will inspire you to travel more! 🙂

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