Tour to Al Ain, an oasis in the Rub' al-Khali desert
The dunes of the Rub' al-Khali desert – the central oasis of the Al Ain – the fountains and sculptural compositions – the Sheikh Khalifa Mosque – the largest camel market of the Middle East – the Grand Mercury mountain hotel – Jabal Hafeet, the highest point of the country – the Green Mubazarrah thermal springs – the Al Ain Wildlife Park
This is the most picturesque and exciting tour out of the entire list of what we can offer about the UAE as it completes our four best tours around the country. It best shows the essence of this country, the national peculiarities of the local people, their culture, traditions, and distinctive character.
The oasis city of Al Ain has always been subject of brutal and sometimes bloody struggle among the local nomadic tribes. This is exactly the place where the sources of the live-giving freshwater could be found, and one must understand that there are not so many sources of water in desert areas, especially those like the Rub' Al Khali since it is one of the most impressive deserts on the globe. It is rated at the same level as Sahara, Kalahari, and Gobi.
Having visited Al Ain, our guests obtain the most comprehensive and complete picture of the UAE.
From the very start of our journey, as we ride down the motorway from Dubai to Al Ain, you get nicely surprised with the high quality of this expressway running towards a little-known provincial town. The motorway snakes around the dunes of sand that change their color from light yellow to purely red.
Far from the limits of the present-day megalopolis of Dubai, we suddenly start seeing its remote facilities as we pass by the tremendous Outlet Mall and the rugby stadium where a lot of international tournaments and competitions are held, as well as the SkyDive Dubai flying club where parachute divers exercise, and, of course, the horse racing track where camel races are held during the autumn, spring, and winter seasons. It is an exciting event with a lot of things worth seeing. One can see qualification runs on workdays, and the official races are held on weekends starting Friday. The next place of interest is the Al Maha Desert Resort, the very first eco-hotel in a desert on our planet. This place is unique due to its location within a natural preserve area where the Arabian antelopes of Al-Maha and Beisa species have their habitats.
The village of Al Foah, which is a suburban area of Al Ain, welcomes its visitors with the symbols of the Arabian hospitality: the Dallah coffee pot, the Finjan small cups, the Medhan fragrance vessel, and the Marash rosewater jug.
And here we come to the sample provincial city of magnificent beauty, with shady streets full of greenery, cozy downtown area, and numerous historical oases in the center of the city such as Qatara, Al Muwaiji, and the Central Al Ain Oasis, and the fortresses that used to defend them. Many respected citizens of this country reside in this city to enjoy the local less humid climate at summertime as compared to the littoral cities, when the rest of the Arabian Peninsula is consumed by unbearable heat.
On having had a highlight tour around the city, and on having enjoyed the faint odour of date palms at the Central Al Ain Oasis, and on having looked at the ancient irrigation system of Falaj, we will turn our steps towards the museum house dedicated to the legendary man named His Majesty Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founder of the United Arab Emirates and the first president of the country. He was born and raised in the vicinity of this oasis, and here he also began his political career as the leader of the eastern part of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
Later on, we will visit a wildlife park (the best zoo in the region) and will have a look at the inhabitants of the Arabian Peninsula and of the African continent since they are represented here in their best variety. Next, we will go to the foot of the famous Jabal Hafeet mount where hot mineral springs of the Green Mubazarrah are situated. The Green Mubazarrah compound is the most favored recreation area for the local dwellers and for the visitors from the Omani border town of Buraimi and from the nearby villages around it. Those interested will have the chance to feel the curative properties of the hot water coming from the said springs. Our next station will be 1180 meters above the sea level to serve as the culmination and the hot point of our entire trip. Here stands a luxurious hotel with a grandiose atrium where live plants climb and grow. We will have the chance for a cup of coffee, and those willing will even have the chance for lunch or dinner. Later, we will go up to the observation platform to enjoy the view of a large part of the city of Al Ain, the endless reaches of the Rub' al-Khali desert, and the territory of the neighboring Sultanate of Oman. I would like to add that this place is unusually beautiful at sunset and after that time as the entire city flashes with a radiant sea of lights.
The sequence of our visits to the said locations can vary, depending on the season, the duration of daylight time, and the time of departure. This tour can be started by lunchtime, without having lost another portion of sunlight and water entertainment at the shores of the Persian Gulf. We understand that many people have quite limited time and want to manage great many things at once, i.e. to boil the ocean.
If you are making your holiday not in the Emirate of Dubai, but somewhere in Sharjah, Ajman, Umm al-Quwain, Ras al-Khaimah or Fujairah, the initial phase of our trip will be way different, and that also offers a lot of its own advantages. I will tell you all details during a private phone call prior to the trip or during our telecom session.
Upon special request, we can pay a visit to the Margam autodrome where all-terrain vehicles are available for rent. It is to point out that this is the best place for riding an ATV in the entire country.