Sponsored Content: Getting out of the city has its benefits, here are seven
Time Out Dubai staff
We love Dubai, there’s no doubt about it. The city’s awesome nightlife, restaurants, skyline, golf clubs and adventure parks are renowned around the world. But sometimes you just need to be able to get away from it all, experience something a little bit different and be at one with nature.
Al Wadi Nature Reserve is an enormous, protected, 1,235-acre area within Wadi Khadeja in Ras Al Khaimah. Feeling at ease in the countryside and helping to sustain the UAE wildlife has rarely felt so relaxing, with a wide array of nature-friendly activities that are designed to awaken your senses and send you back to the city with a whole bunch of new memories. The reserve is home to the Ritz-Carlton-managed resort Al Wadi Desert, Ras Al Khaimah.
Here, we look at seven things you can do at Al Wadi to fully experience everything there is to offer, and make sure you can properly unwind from the metropolitan hustle and bustle.
If you’ve ever fancied yourself to be something of a Robin Hood, then here’s your chance to prove yourself as a master marksman. Hone your skills of this ancient desert tradition in a specially designed archery zone. Group and private sessions are available for both day time and under the stars.
As the UAE’s national bird, the falcon is revered across the emirates. Al Wadi’s mews are home to a variety of the much-loved raptors, as wells as hawks, owls and eagles. So if you’re looking for a top-class experience taming some of the world’s greatest birds of prey with the region’s best instructors, this is the place for you.
Catch and release fishing
The middle of the desert isn’t usually associated with flowing lakes but a watering hole found in the middle of the Al Wadi Nature Reserve offers up the perfect spot for some eco-friendly fishing. Chill around a beautiful lake with a gourmet waterside picnic, complete with bubbles if you so choose, until you get your catch!
Over at the Equestrian Centre, you’ll be able to take a guided tour around the stables and paddocks, which are home to over 30 horses and a dozen camels, before hopping on for a roaming desert tour. Lessons are offered for novice and experienced riders, with pony rides available for the little’uns.
If a horse’s back is too flat for your liking, perhaps a camel caravan ride is more your thing? Ride a camel through the desert dunes during the beautiful Arabian sunset. Set out for a meander across the rolling dunes until sunset, at which point sundowners are served to make sure you catch the full picture from the base of a dune.
Or just go for brunch
Alternatively, you could just have brunch instead. If you prefer observing beauty from afar, the Equestrian Club House offers up an extensive Friday brunch in the country overlooking the sunset.
Dine under the stars
Enjoy the stars like you’ve never done before. It’s easy to lose sight of the night sky’s beauty amid the glowing night lights of the Dubai skyline, but get a bit out of the city and you’ll remember what it’s really supposed to look like. Grab a secluded spot for dinner and experience traditional cuisine in a Bedouin setting or in a contemporary setting, it’s up to you. Al Wadi Desert, Ras Al Khaimah, A Ritz-Carlton Partner Hotel, www.ritz-carlton.com (07 206 7777).