A different side to my favourite city
Dubai Travel Blog› entry 18 of 24 › view all entries
Finally, we were back in
We had to be transferred in a 4x4, for reasons which quickly became apparent. The entrance to the wildlife reserve where Al Maha is located is massive...it's 20% of the land in
We were met at reception by Jacques, our South African activities co-ordinator/ game driver and our resident host, although I've forgotten her name. We were checked in quickly and taken to our room by golf buggy. Each room is again a detached villa and was stunning. The pool looked out across the desert and we could see herds of Oryx and gazelle roaming around on the plains.
We arrived really early so unpacked and went for breakfast...I've never had such a good omelette (sorry Mum and Dad)...superb! We booked a game drive with Jacques in the early evening and to go on the camel sunset ride out into the desert.
We were both pretty tired after the night flight but headed down to the main pool, which we’d found on a guided tour of the resort with one of the managers.
We tottered down to reception and headed out in the 4X4. Jacques was a superb guide, and pointed out the different breeds of gazelle that were springing about in the dunes, as well as the Arabian Oryx, which are white gazelle-type animals, but a bit chunkier, and also have HUGE black pointed horns...they can cause some real damage if they spike you. Jacques was also really good at telling us about the different plants and also about Arabian culture.
We were out in the dunes for around an hour, and wandered down to the spa where we were to meet the guides for the camel trek. I've been on a camel before, but I'm still not used to the horrible jerking way the stand up and sit down again...I don't think I ever will be, and I never feel safe when the stagger up! We trekked out for about 20 minutes and arrived at a dune formation where one of the hotel's barmen was waiting with Kir Royales and fresh fruit. We watched the sunset and took lots of photos...I also discovered that it you put sunglasses with a pink tint in the lens in front of your camera the sunset looks rather more vivid than it actually is! So naughty...
As darkness enveloped the desert very quickly, we headed back for the hotel for a shower before dinner.
Dinner was fantastic! 5 courses, all superb, but I'll admit I was stuffed by the time we were through. The heat and a glass of wine always make me sleepy so it was a pretty early night, ready for sunning ourselves the next day.
At least we were safe in the knowledge it is almost 100% unlikely that it'll rain here! :D