Spring Break Fun in the UAE
As school breaks up for spring break and all you hear in the playground as you pick up your children is the exotic holidays your friends are about to embark on don’t be left feeling too depressed as this time of year is the best to be in UAE – the weather is perfect! Warm enough to swim in the sea with gorgeous cool evenings to sit outside and have a BBQ. Take advantage of it as it won’t be here for long.
Time is always at a premium in Dubai and the weekends are usually too packed to have time to visit the neighboring emirates so make this spring break the time to explore them.
An hour and a half drive away from Dubai is the historic oasis town of Al Ain which has the newly updated Al Ain Wildlife Park & Resort. Set in a unique desert environment, you will be able to see African big game such as Lions, Giraffe, Zebra & Wildebeest and of course animals native to the Arabian Peninsula. Finish the day with a drive up the UAE’s most famous mountain Jebel Hafeet. The fully tarmac road climbs for 11.7 km up the mountain rising 1219 mt. When you reach the top, you can have a refreshing drink at the Jebel Hafeet Hotel. You will be surprised by how much cooler it is up there!
A popular past time in the UAE is off-roading. Hatta Pools is one of the easiest and most popular off road drives. The 115 km trip to Hatta passes the stunning red sand dunes of “Big Red” and takes in some impressive views of the rugged Hajar Mountains. On arrival at the pools, the children will be excited to jump into the rock pools. At the end, treat yourself to a cappuccino on the terrace of the Hatta Fort Hotel. If you don’t feel confident to do the trip yourself, there are many tour companies that do this trip (eg Desert Rangers). Remember to take your passport with UAE visa when traveling to Hatta as you will briefly pass through Oman.
To break up the two week holiday you could book a couple of days on the East Coast. Situated 1 ½ hours drive from Dubai and lying between the Hajar Mountains and the Indian Ocean are some great hotels such as Le Meridien Al Aqah Beach and Fujairah Rotana Resort & Spa offering fantastic family facilities. Everyone can enjoy the beach and water sports including snorkeling or diving off Snoopy Island. If you enjoy barbecuing, then check out Sandy Beach Motel where you can rent a bungalow and prepare your own BBQ in the evenings. While down there, if you can pull yourself away from the water sports, take a drive to discover the UAE’s oldest mosque, Bidiya Mosque, dating back to 640 AD.
On your way back to Dubai, leave early and stop off at the fishing village of Dibba to pick up a dhow trip to visit the Musandam area. There are many companies offering these tours. On the dhow, you will enjoy diving off the boat, swimming, snorkeling and some dolphin watching. This is a full day trip arriving back to Dibba just after 4pm. For this trip, you do not need a Oman Visa but you will need to carry your passport with your UAE residency visa.
Another less visited Emirate is Umm Al Quwain. This journey will take you less than an hour from Dubai. While there visit the Umm Al Quwain Marine Club where there is a pool, restaurant and water sport facilities such as wake boarding. Another great activity is to hire a kayak and paddle the short distance to explore the nearby mangrove swamps which the kids will love. Some times the club also organizes crab hunting evenings.
These are just a few suggestion to keep you and your kids occupied over the spring break – enjoy!
Check out our Spring Camps Directory – filled with organized camps of all sorts!