When people speak about the unbelievably fun activities Dubai has to offer, they’re not always talking about the shopping malls. As much as retail therapy can be considered an endurance sport in the glitzy Emirate, there are many more fun and active pursuits to enjoy under the sweltering sun of the Arabian Peninsula. Whilst Dubai’s desert safaris and indoor skiing are world renowned, there are a few more activities which don’t seem to get much of a mention…but they really should.
Check out the following thrilling activities when next in Dubai, and you can ensure that your credit card bill won’t be the only thing to cause your heart to skip a beat!
Sunrise hot air ballooning
When it comes to bucket-list activities, there aren’t many that can match the exhilaration and excitement of a hot air balloon ride. The feeling of weightlessness inside a wicker basket, the sheer calmness that comes from seamlessly gliding along the sky, and the utter peace of a ride, (well it’s quiet between burner bursts!), is one of the most memorable experiences one could have. Anywhere, anytime.
Take a sunrise balloon ride over the surreal desert landscape of Dubai, and you will be privy to one of the most stunning scenes in the world, complete with glistening oases and the occasional herd of camels!
Balloon Adventures Emirates are the leading balloon ride company in the Emirates and charge £180 per person, which includes hotel pick-up and drop off.
At the thought of sounding repetitive: skydiving is one of the most exhilarating things one could do…anywhere, anytime. It is! Really, along with ballooning of course! The fab thing about doing so in Dubai is that, as opposed to the ballooning, you can choose to jump out of a perfectly good plane above the Palm Jumeirah Resort, right in the centre of the city. Enjoy Dubai’s views from a different perspective (if you can manage to keep your eyes open that is) and scare yourself witless!
Skydive Dubai offers two diving options: above the city or out in the desert. Tandem jumps cost about £300 and should definitely be booked in advance.
You may have realized by now that the most exciting views and experiences of Dubai are to be had high up in the sky. Way up. Yet there’s another way for you to enjoy the superlative views of this sprawling city, one which may be a little ‘tamer’ than the last, yet is still utterly invigorating.
Hop on a sea plane and enjoy a bird’s eye view of Dubai’s most impressive sights during a 45 minute flight from Dubai Creek to Jebel Ali with Seawings Dubai.
These scenic tours and an absolute must-do when in Dubai; not even the world’s tallest building can offer such amazing views! This reputable company offers various flights, and you also have the option of including high tea at the Dubai Golf Club for a little extra zest. Flight options range in price from around £240 to just under £2,000 (no, you don’t get to keep the plane for the latter), so there’s something to suit every budget.
Self-drive dune buggy riding
Whilst this might seem identical to the myriad of 4WD dune bashing tours on offer in Dubai, we’re here to tell you the two activities could not be further apart! Not only are you the crazy hoon behind the wheel, but dune bashing in an open-air dune buggy is infinitely more exciting than doing the same in an air-conditioned Toyota Landcruiser. You don’t collect nearly as much sticky sand in your crevices with a 4WD!
The guys at Dream Explorer offer unbelievably fun rides on their custom-built desert buggies, which are super fun and extremely safe too (that roll cage comes in rather handy). A one full hour ride costs a very doable £90, and includes safety gear as well as back up vehicle and experienced guides. The whole outing actually lasts almost four hours, as you’ll have the chance to stop numerous times for photo ops and to have a go and some heart-thumping sand boarding (like snowboarding…only faster!).
Remember to scream on the inside during your ride and keep your mouth firmly shut, otherwise you run the risk of adding a little crunch to all your meals for the next two days. This is one adrenalin-packed activity thrill seekers should not miss.
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