A desert escape for Eid al-Adha Secluded desert retreat Tilal Liwa sits on the edge of the Rub Al Khail Desert and so is great for those who want to get away from it all (it’s 200km outside Abu Dhabi). Spend Eid there and pay from Dhs599 per room per night. Valid November 3-12 only. Near Mezzaira Village, Abu Dhabi (02 894 6111).
A romantic weekend at The Pullman Couples can head to this classy, design-led spot at Mall of the Emirates in Barsha for a two-night stay, where they’ll get a signature massage for two, a welcome bottle of bubbly and late check-out. You should leave liking each other more than when you walked in. Dhs1,999 per couple. Until December 31. www.pullmanhotels.com (04 377 2000).
Dive packages in Fujairah The Nour Arjaan by Rotana has just launched a new dive and stay package – get a night’s stay, breakfast, late check-out at 6pm and a dive (for both qualified and new divers) at the five-star IDC Padi centre, Divers Down. Dhs550 per person. Ongoing. Nour Arjan by Rotana, Fujairah (09 202 5507).
Eid package at the Radisson Blu Fujairah Enjoy a mini break at this five-star resort, which features an on-site dive centre and Indian Ocean and Hajar mountain views. Book between November 3-9 and get half-board, a beachfront room, breakfast and buffet dinner. Dhs1,300 per room (for two people). Book by November 9. Radisson Blu, Fujairah (09 204 3111).
Good deals at Banyan Tree Book at this luxurious resort before November 9 and stay from November 3 to November 12 and you’ll get free daily breakfast for up to two adults and two children, dinner at Al Waha, Saffron or Sands restaurants, two on-site activities and an hour’s use of the hydrotherapy spa for two people. Rates from Dhs3,575 for pool villas (beachfront or desert). Minimum two-night stay to be eligible for the deal. Book by November 9. Banyan Tree, Ras Al Khaimah (07 206 7605).
Ladies’ desert retreat at Bab Al Shams Join ladies-only travel company The World At Her Feet for a three-day break at the Bab Al Shams resort in November. It will include a welcome drink, daily buffet breakfast and lunch, one dinner at Masala, one dinner at Al Hadheerah with a show, one spa treatment and one archery lesson. Dhs2,500 on a twin-sharing basis. Trip runs November 17-19. Bab al Shams Desert Resort & Spa, near Endurance Village, www.meydanhotels.com/babalshams (04 381 3231).
Spend Eid at Sheikh Zayed Road’s new hotel The Eid package at the new Radisson Royal Hotel (formerly the JAL Hotel) includes a private check-in on the 42nd floor, a stay in a junior suite, complimentary cocktails, suit or national dress pressing, a free afternoon tea, daily fresh fruit platter and personalised butler service. Rooms from Dhs1,500 per night. Stays from November 3-9. Radisson Royal Hotel, Sheikh Zayed Road (04 308 0000).
A canal-side retreat in Amsterdam Stay four nights for the price of three in the canal-side Sofitel Amsterdam The Grand in The Netherlands. Nestled between two quiet canals in the heart of the city, the hotel has retained its 15th-century architectural heritage but still boasts five-star facilities. Built around a 17th-century 100km canal ring, the capital of the Netherlands is often referred to as ‘The Venice of the North’, and is a wonderful city to visit thanks to its bicycle-friendly streets, trendy bars and beautiful tulips. From Dhs8,213, including transfers, accommodation and return flights from Dubai with Emirates. Valid November 1-December 27. www.emiratesholidays.com (800 5252).
Spa and diving packages in the Maldives Baros Maldives, an intimate boutique resort that’s a 20-minute boat ride from Malé Airport, is offering luxury packages for both spa and sea lovers. The diving package involves a 90-minute to two-hour course for two on the basics of scuba diving, during which you’ll enjoy your first dive experience at the Baros Reef. The spa package allows two guests to try a signature body scrub. The packages include transfers and breakfast (with a minimum stay of four nights). From Dhs2,200 per night until October 30; from Dhs2,100 per night November 1-December 15. www.baros.com (+960 664 2672).
Spend Eid at the new Missoni Hotel This fashionable design hotel in Kuwait is offering a special Eid package for stays between November 3-9. Rates start at Dhs1,900 per room and include an à la carte breakfast (which is also available in the room throughout the day), a barbecue dinner served on the pool deck and early check-in and late check-out when available. From Dhs1,900 per room. Price based on a twin-sharing basis. Until November 9. www.hotelmissoni.com (+965 2577 0000).
Stay palatial in the Golden Triangle of India Experience unbeatable views of the Taj Mahal from the luxurious Oberoi Amarvilas. Built in a Moorish and Mughal architectural style, the hotel is located 600m from the breathtaking monument. Stay in a premier room with balcony for three nights with breakfast, private transfers from Delhi and return economy flights with Emirates. From Dhs9,070. Valid November 4-20. www.emiratesholidays.com (800 5252).
Viennese escape Travel to the city where the spirit of the Austrian Empire is still alive. Vienna is great for art fans who want to see the works of pioneering Viennese greats Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt. Stay for four nights in one of Sharaf’s partner hotels – the package includes a city tour and a trip to the Schonbrunn Palace. Flights aren’t included, but you can fly direct on Austrian Air from Dhs2,260 return (www.austrian.com). Dhs1,050 per person based on two sharing. Until December 31. www.sharaftravel.com (04 397 6161).
Best time of year to go to…
Cape Town, South Africa This festival sees up to 13,000 marchers taking to the streets in brightly coloured garb with painted faces, playing an array of musical instruments. Most participants are from the Afrikaans-speaking Cape community, who have preserved the tradition since the 1800s. Kaapse Klopse, January 2. www.tourismcapetown.co.za.
Beijing, China It’s not surprising that this Chinese city is a great place to celebrate this annual event: expect fireworks, plenty of decorations and people in a generally festive mood. Chinese New Year, January 23. www.ebeijing.gov.cn.