The UAE has turned 40; here are the wonders that I’ve decided to share with you to mark this significant occasion.
This fantastic mosque really does inspire people to visit it. The first feeling I felt was amazement, before a true religious calm came upon me. They are not joking when they call it a national landmark. The first thing you see are the pools that overlook the building, which adds to to how amazing the mosque really is. The huge landmark covers five football fields and this is impressive enough in itself. But then you walk into the main hall to find a chandelier and a huge, knotted carpet, making for a breathtaking sight. If that was not enough, looking at all of the small details in the design of the building and the artwork showed me why exactly it took them so long to build it. I would suggest that anyone who has the opportunity to visit this building should do so.
Tel: 800 555
I would have never thought that in the middle of the desert there would be a green and lush city and for it to be the birth place of Sheikh Zayid bin Sultan Al Nahayn. What made this sight more astonishing is that they still used old methods of irrigation (Falaj) and that they have managed to maintain the integrity of this beautiful oasis. The Hillside streams, waterfalls and hot springs are just too good to miss out on. www.visitabudhabi.ae
The tallest building in the world is a must-see. This building really did put Dubai on the map and, whereever I go, I am asked if I have ever visited the tallest tower in the world. I can never forget the New Year’s Eve when they had such a good fireworks show that, when it was over, people waited to see if there was anything else. It is such a great building that Tom Cruise will be seen jumping and climbing it in the new Mission Impossible movie. Whenever I go to dinner at the Dubai Mall, the water show is nice to watch while you are waiting for your food and overlooking the great Burj.
Tel: +9714 8888888
Big Red is a huge sand dune that is just too much fun to not visit at least once a year. The last time I went, we all had bikes and cameras attached to our helmets. What a time we had. We spent around six hours riding up the big dune in a group of ten people, and one person even took his own car. At the end of the day, we all climbed to the top of the big dune and watched the sun set and it was well worth it.
Tel: +971 55 2680498
Opened in 1987, offering a wide choice of Islamic exhibitions and lessons about the worlds fastest-growing religion, this museum gives you the full-view of what it stands for. I did not know how much the Islamic world has taught us and how much Muslims actually achieved from medicine, astronomy, geography, natural science and architecture. This exhibition also holds beautiful and vibrant art work that goes back to before the seventh century AD, plus there’s a gift shop so that you can never forget about the fantastic experience. I would recommend a visit because it is just too good to miss out on.
Tel:+ 971 6 5655455
Dreamland is the world’s largest aqua park, offering many rides, slides and a lazy river for relaxation. This is a fantastic weekend away either with friends or family. Even if you want to spend the night and go again the next day, there are many places to go and I have always had a great time with my friends whenevenr I’ve gone.
Tel:+971 6 768 1888
This is a perfect place for peace and relaxation, allowing all of the stress in the world to leave your mind while you listen to the sound of the waves crashing against the shoreline. While doing so, enjoy some food, drink and a good group of friends just to make a good night even better.
This is a tomb that was uncovered in 1986 while authorities installed a new sewage system. This site proved that there were settlements on this land long before we could even imagine. And all the belongings from the tomb are in the Ajman Museum for public viewing.
A three-week festival held in December or January. The festival has many things that you could do and interesting events to watch and enjoy. My favourite is to take high-performance 4×4 trips while my family goes around buying stuff. Traditional food and dancing is also available, and there is nothing better than trying out different styles of cooking from different places. While there, you might want to pass by the last hillside fort in the UAE. The fort is a great example of historical architecture.
An island that looks exactly like the Snoopy cartoon character, this has lots of things to do and my favourite is Scuba diving. Even if your friends don’t Scuba dive, or you don’t, there is a huge amount of water sport activities to do from canoeing, snorkelling or even just relaxing on the beach all day with friends and family. Imagine yourself swimming alongside many marine animals including the black-tip and white-tip reef sharks that are friendly. This is an experience of a lifetime for many. I always swim to the island and see if I can catch a glimpse of any weird creatures. A natural coral reef has developed over time and has become a habitat of much marine life to make it a perfect snorkelling spectacle. Many divers recommend this area, as it offers night and wreck dives with loads of marine animals to be seen.
Tel:+ 971 9 244 5555