Watch oryx from your private patio

Al Maha Desert Resort and Spa is nestled smack-bang in the middle of the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve, which became an official member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature since its successful reintroduction of the Arabian oryx, a spiky-horned beast that was extinct in the wild until a few years ago. There are about 200 oryx roaming the resort, along with gazelles and a variety of other native critters like the rare sand cat (though they are near impossible to spot), the Arabian red fox, gerbils and even Ethiopian hedgehogs.
Al Maha Desort Resort & Spa (www.emirateshotelsresorts.com/al-maha/en; 04 303 4222) is on the Dubai-Al Ain highway (E66).

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