If you are ever in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), you HAVE to go on a desert safari! Without any hesitation, I can tell you that this was by far my favorite thing the entire trip!
What happens is, you show up at the location of the tour and wait to be taken into an SUV. When it’s your turn, you sit with a guide who drives you into the desert.
It looks exactly like how you would have imagined it. You are in the middle of sand dunes that stretch for miles on out. Everything looks exactly the same and you wonder how the guide knows where to go. There are no markers or anything else, just piles and piles of sand everywhere you look.
Then, you come to a stop. Everyone comes out of the car and goes crazy taking pictures.
Then out of nowhere, our driver came out of the car holding a snowboard (ironic). My friend and I asked what that was for. He said, some people like to sandboard on the dunes, and asked if we would like to try it. Heck yea! Well…I don’t really know how to snowboard so he told me I could sit on it and use it like a sled. So with a little push I was on my way down!
As awesome as it was, I have to give you a tip just in case you do this: keep your mouth closed while going down. I had sand in my mouth by the end of it. Actually, it was pretty much everywhere! lol
Next up was my friend, she’s slightly cooler than me (just slightly) and knows how to snowboard so she gave sandboarding a shot too.
Yea, she definitely killed it!
The hard part of all of this was trying to make our way back up the dune. Halfway up, we gave up and let the SUV come to us.
As the sun started setting we got back in our SUVs and rode to the camp grounds where we would have our dinner buffet.
When we arrived, we saw there was an option to ride a camel, so of course we had to do that as well! We somehow managed to get a grumpy one because he would not sit or stand when he was told to. He just kept grunting, maybe we were too heavy?
After a fun and somewhat frightful ride on the camel we headed towards the campsite which was set up on the floor with loads of rugs everywhere. The middle was empty for the belly dancer that came out once it got dark.
Around us were different shops that people could get souvenirs from or get some henna done. So we walked around to check all those things out before dinner was served.
Somehow I do not have a picture of my meal (I guess this was the time before everyone was obsessed with taking pictures of their food). You are just going to have to take my word for it, but it was pretty good. There was tons of meat and fresh naan bread. (I ate a lot of meat platters during my visit to the UAE. It was all just too good!)
I felt like a real desert dweller for a couple of hours and left feeling really happy and excited. And like I said in the beginning, this was my favorite thing to do there, and nothing topped this adventure in all of my UAE travels.
Would you add this to your bucket list?