A stunning backdrop of golden sand dunes lies just outside the glittering metropolis of Dubai. An hour’s drive from downtown Dubai, the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve is a dramatic scene of sweeping sands, home to protected wildlife like the Arabian Oryx and Gazelle. Embarking on a Dubai desert safari is how thrill-seekers get their kicks, from dune bashing in 4x4’s and quad bikes to surfing the soft slopes on a sand board, while those after something a little more relaxing will enjoy the camel rides, nature walks or captivating hot air balloon rides at sunrise.
Spending an evening in a Bedouin desert camp is the perfect way to round off an action-packed day in the desert, with regional cuisine, belly dancing and classical Arabian music under a canopy of glittering stars. The Dubai desert makes for an excellent day trip from the city, or if you’d like to relish the seclusion a little longer there are some fantastic luxury hotels here: we’ve handpicked our favourites below.