Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve

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Top 5 things to do in the Dubai Desert

Visit the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve to swap the hot bustle of the city for a scenic journey through the UAE's charming landscapes and traditional cultures. Here are a few fun ways to make the most of a unique day trip!

  • Discover incredible wildlife

    1. Discover incredible wildlife

    Desert safari tours will introduce you to a whole host of native flora and fauna, including foxes, wildcats, and the reserve's greatest conservation success, the Arabian Oryx!

  • Ride camels and horses

    2. Ride camels and horses

    If cruising the desert landscape in an off-road vehicle lacks romance, why not let an experienced guide lead you through the sites of interest by horse or camel?

  • Enjoy a traditional Bedouin meal

    3. Enjoy a traditional Bedouin meal

    The Bedouin's name means "desert dwellers" in Arabic and you're on their turf! Fortunately they provide great food and entertainment from the comfort of their homey tents.

  • Try sandboarding

    4. Try sandboarding

    Fancy a break from tradition? The sand dunes make an ideal setting for extreme sports like quad biking, sandboarding, and even sandskiing!

  • Watch the sun set over the dunes

    5. Watch the sun set over the dunes

    Whether you choose to see the sun set from the top of a dune or amidst the hospitality of a lamp-lit Bedouin village, don't miss this exquisite national park at its most stunning.

Planning Your Visit

  • How to get there?

    It isn't possible to visit the reserve without an approved tour group, so look out for tour operators that provide transfers from your hotel or the city center. Otherwise you can only reach the reserve by car via the E66, which starts out as the Dubai-Al Ain Road between Downtown Dubai and the Ras al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary.

  • What to bring?

    The desert is, of course, very exposed to sunlight, so bring sunglasses, suitable headwear, and plenty of sunscreen! You'll need to use a lot of the latter so bring moisturizer to stop your skin drying out. If you're bringing an expensive camera then make sure it's protected against the sand (waterproofing also works!), and bring a water bottle even if your tour operator is providing it, just in case. Also, do NOT wear closed leather shoes!

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    The desert is there day and night, so it all depends on when you schedule your tour!
  • Is it expensive?
    Depends on the experience you are seeking, but prices usually start around $100 per person.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Definitely.
  • How to get there
    Your chosen tour guide will take you there in a private van from the city.
  • Additional information
    Eat lightly before your excursion. The bumpy ride across the dunes can make some people feel queasy!

Other Sightseeing Options in Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve

Want to discover all there is to do in Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 2,714 reviews

We wanted to discover the desert on the natural side, at a good time (24 degrees in August!), Take the breakfast with the sunrise and we were delighted! I therefore recommend: discovering the flora and fauna with Orient Tour. Thanks to Mustapha our guide who led us, explained, showed us gazelles, oryx and lots of bird species! Prepare oriental coffee and tea with assorted sweets at sunrise on a dune. It was just magic! We had all our senses awakened. Frankly, discovering Dubai off the beaten track is worth the detour! We recommend!

Very nice experience for anyone who wants to take a break from bustling Dubai. Desert as far as the eye can see out of the convenience of your A/C Range Rover. Guide took his time driving through conservatory to allow for stops. Lot’s of animal sightings topped of by an exceptional breakfast in a high end desert resort. Private half day trip was just perfect to allow for other activities later in the day.

Amazing, once in a lifetime experience. The price may seem steep, but it was well worth it. The food was exquisitely prepared by a private chef, beautifully placed, and delicious. The five course meal by itself was well worth the cost.

Very nice experience ! Mustafa (our driver) is one of a kind ! Really nice person, very good service. This is a must do experience here in Dubai. Highly recommended!

Eddie was an amazing guide, very knowledgeable, warm and hospitable. would highly recommend!!