Top 10 Outdoor Adventure Activities in the UAE: From Skydiving to Dune Bashing (2024)
Want to experience some Thrill and Adventure in the UAE? Here’s all that you can do.
The United Arab Emirates boasts captivating landscapes welcoming adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts. The Emirates of Dubai and Emirates of Abu Dhabi offer an entry into the heart-pounding world of outdoor activities. From the majestic dunes of the Arabian Desert, where dune bashing and sandboarding promise adrenaline rushes, to the crystal-clear waters of the Gulf, offering scuba diving and snorkeling escapades, the UAE is a playground for adventurers.
Join us in this article and discover the exhilaration of skydiving over the iconic Palm Jumeirah. Or embark on a wild 4×4 journey through the dramatic Hajar Mountains. Feel the wind in your hair as you soar above the stunning landscape in a hot air balloon for more fun.
Outdoor Activities in the UAE: Thrills and Adventures
This article will guide you through the Top 10 Adventure Activities to try in the UAE. Have a look:
1. Skydive Dubai
If you are an adrenaline enthusiast, Skydive Dubai offers an exciting experience for you. This world-renowned in the United Arab Emirates offers an unparalleled skydiving experience against the backdrop of stunning views. Skydive Dubai was established in 2010 and since then has become a global hub for adventure seekers. The two most iconic diving locations where Skydive Dubai operates include the Palm Jumeirah drop zone and Margham’s desert drop zone. The former allows thrill-seekers to soar above the man-made wonder Palm Jumeirah and enjoy the views of the Persian Gulf and Dubai skyline all at once. Whereas the latter offers a surreal experience where divers free-fall over the vast, golden dunes of the Arabian Desert. The company Skydive Dubai caters to both beginners and professionals. If you are a beginner, try Tandem jumps.
2. Ras Al Khaimah Jebel Jais Zipline
Officially known as Jebel Jais Flight, the Ras Al Khaimah Jebel Jais Zipline is proudly the longest zipline on Earth. Offering a record-breaking adventure, it spans 2.83 kilometers, 2.83 kilometers and speeds ranging from 120 to 150 kilometers per hour. Ziplining here offers a unique vantage point to view the picturesque landscapes of Ras Al Khaimah right below like never before. Jebel Jais Flight holds its position in the Guinness World Records and is frequented by thrill-seekers from around the world. As you zip along, your heart will race, and your adrenaline will surge. The adventure takes no more than two to three minutes. However, even this smallest duration is enough to bring that thrill. Participants who have the courage to keep their eyes open can enjoy the rewarding views of the rugged Hajar mountains and the expansive desert.
PLEASE NOTE: Jebel Al Jais is the highest peak in the UAE, and outside summer months, it can be quite chilly, so dress accordingly.
3. Kayaking in the Eastern Mangrove National Park
When in Abu Dhabi, UAE, escape the city life to immerse yourself in the beauty and thrill of Eastern Mangrove National Park. This place of immense natural beauty is a convenient drive from both Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Kayaking through the winding canals of the National Park is a serene adventure that offers a different kind of thrill. Kayaking along the shallow waters of the mangrove will allow you to encounter wildlife, including a variety from turtles and crabs to graceful stingrays and colorful fish. This experience is well-suited for beginner kayakers. Bring along your binoculars to enjoy the abundance of birdlife in the mangroves. To relax a bit, there are sandy beaches along the way where you can relax and take in the surroundings. Abu Dhabi’s mangrove forest is one of the UAE’s most popular kayaking destinations.
4. Scuba Diving in Fujairah
Scuba diving in Fujairah, on the eastern coast of the UAE, is an experience like no other in the country. The thrill and adventure it brings is like none other. The warm water currents from the Gulf of Oman bless UAE’s eastern coast with an abundance of marine life and underwater wonders. When in Fujairah, try Scuba diving at Snoopy Island, Dibba Rock, and Martini Rock. All these sites are renowned for their stunning coral gardens, making them the ideal habitat for an array of fascinating marine species. Scuba diving in Fujairah will take you to the depths where rays gracefully glide through the water along colorful triggerfish, mesmerizing lionfish, and majestic sea turtles. Scuba diving operators in Fujairah cater to divers of all levels. If you are new to the adventure, the operators will also provide you with equipment and lessons, ensuring a hassle-free dive.
Individuals who prefer to stay on the surface can try snorkeling and witness the marine beauty from a different perspective. However, if you want to increase the adventure, consider trying a night dive in Fujairah. Al Boom Diving and a few other operators offer this thrilling opportunity to explore the underwater world after dark.
5. Hot Air Ballon Ride in Dubai
A hot air balloon ride in Dubai is a magical and exhilarating experience. This outdoor activity offers thrill and adventure while allowing the participants to witness the unique blend of urban splendor and natural beauty of the Emirates. As the hot air balloon ascends, it will treat you with breathtaking panoramic views of the ever-evolving skyline of Dubai. Some of the iconic landmarks you will spot include Burj Khalifa, Burj Al Arab, and Palm Jumeirah. Most of the Hot Air Ballon rides in Dubai operate from the Margham Desert, a quick drive to the city center. Drifting over the desert at sunrise, you’ll witness the tranquil beauty of the sand dunes and the stunning play of colors as the sun rises. Most of the balloon rides are typically scheduled in the early morning to take advantage of the calm winds and cooler temperatures. The balloon rides are accessible to people of all ages. Watching the sunrise over the desert is a memorable experience.
6. Desert Safari
When in the UAE, you cannot miss the thrill of Desert Safari. The United Arab Emirates is popular for its Desert Safaris and Dune Bashing. This adventure allows participants to explore the vast and mesmerizing desert landscapes of the UAE. The most exciting part of this adventure is dune bashing. When skilled drivers take you on a roller-coaster ride over the sand dunes in a 4×4 vehicle, with the exhilaration of scaling dunes and then descending with thrilling drops, you will feel the real adventure. Some Desert Safaris times, along with sunset, offer the view of the sun dipping below the horizon amidst the serene desert is a breathtaking experience.
Once done with Desert Safari in UAE, try camel rides through the desert, sandboarding, and more. At the desert camp, you can get henna designs painted on your hands or feet. Also, do not forget to enjoy Arabic coffee, dates, and other refreshments. Experience a hookah (shisha) and enjoy flavored tobacco along with enjoying belly dancing, traditional music, and a tanoura dance performance.
Some popular places to enjoy Desert Safari in UAE include Al Awir Desert, Liwa Desert, Al Lahbab Desert, Al Faya Desert, Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve, Jebel Maleihah, and Bidayer.
7. Parasailing in Fujairah
When in the Emirates of Fujairah, try Parasailing. This exhilarating way to enjoy the stunning coastal scenery and crystal-clear waters is truly rewarding. Fujairah boasts a beautiful coastline along the Gulf of Oman, featuring pristine beaches and rugged mountains as a backdrop. A chance of Parasailing here allows participants to take in breathtaking views of this unique landscape. The water sports operators will harness you to a parachute-like sail, and as a speedboat accelerates, you’ll lift off into the air. This heart-pounding experience provides an adrenaline rush like none other. Parasailing in Fujairah is typically offered by licensed operators; thus, safety is highly prioritized. Many operators also offer tandem rides, allowing you to parasail with a friend or family member. Participants can choose different heights for Parasailing depending on their comfort and the level of adventure they need.
Indoor Thrill and Adventure in UAE
Swim with Sharks at Dubai Aquarium
Once done with the outdoor adventure in the UAE, consider swimming with sharks at the Dubai Aquarium. The Dubai Aquarium is located inside the renowned Dubai Mall and is of a kind facility worldwide. For an extraordinary and heart-pounding adventure, the certified divers here offer participants a chance to dive with sharks for an up close and personal with these incredible creatures. Individuals can also undergo a brief scuba program with Al Boom Diving to prepare for this exhilarating encounter. The aquarium is home to a diverse array of marine life, including several species of sharks. This indoor aquarium swimming experience isn’t just thrilling but also educational. Spending some time here offers insights into the behavior and importance of sharks in marine ecosystems.
Swimming with sharks at the Dubai Aquarium is a one-of-a-kind adventure, and safety is highly prioritized here. This combination of wonder of the ocean world with the thrill of close encounters is truly enchanting.