Dubai's best road trips

Load up your iPod and grab some snacks – it’s time to burn some rubber Discuss this article

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Destination: Big Red sand dunes

Journey time from Dubai: 40 minutes to one hour.

Why do it?
This car journey will take you on a thrilling desert safari into the desert. Dune-bashing through the distinctive scenery will give you chills as the car leaps over ridges and hangs at 45-degree angles, and you’ll feel like you’re going to roll right down the sheer faces. This is a huge tourist attraction in the Middle East with tour companies running two trips a day, so don’t expect to be all alone in the peaceful desert –
you’ll undoubtedly be surrounded by hurtling jeeps revving across the landscape. It is, however, a chance to see Dubai’s rich red sands in an otherwise virtually barren landscape and watch the sunset in the distance. If you’re lucky, you may even spot a desert fox, snake or scorpion.

Best for: Adrenaline junkies

Directions: The Big Red dune is easy to spot along the Dubai-Hatta Road (E44) or the Oman Road (E66) as the landscape changes shape and colour from yellow to red. Along the Hatta Road you’ll see 4x4 drivers pulling into the nearby row of shops to deflate their tyres before hitting the dunes. There are a few dirt track entry points, but they are hard to spot, so keep your eyes peeled.

Tips: Dune-bashing can be a dangerous activity and is for experienced desert 4x4 drivers only. You can hire a 4x4 at most rental companies for less than Dhs500 a day with a UAE licence, or book a tour for up to six people per car with a pro driver (050 159 1199, www.dubaidunebashing.com). Tours start at Dhs165 per person, and you’ll also get dinner in a mock-Bedouin camp.

Destination: Al Ain
Destination: Abu Dhabi
Destination: Khasab, Oman
Destination: Sur, Oman
Destination: Khor Fakkan

By Becky Lucas
Time Out Dubai,

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