Dubai is the epitome of a global city. The city skyline is dominated by glistening skyscrapers and the city is bustling. However, this is just one aspect of Dubai and it is also home to an abundance of natural attractions. When you visit Dubai, you shouldn’t limit yourself to the city but also venture out into the hidden natural gems that nature lovers will surely enjoy.
Where to Go in
Dubai for Nature
This guide lists a few destinations in Dubai that will appeal to the nature lover in you.
The Big Red is the largest sand dune in Dubai. It is located just outside the city making it an ideal getaway for those looking for fun-filled desert activities. The sandy desert earns its name for the bright red sand on the Dubai-Hatta Road.
The Big Red is also a popular destination for many adventurous sports, such as dune bashing, Quad biking, off-road jeep driving, and sandboarding. Even if you are not into any of these thrilling activities, you can just visit The Big Red to admire the natural beauty of the dunes that rise to 300 feet.
Fossil Rock is another must-see Dubai attraction for nature lovers. This destination is also a short drive along the Dubai-Hatta Road. The fossils that are found on this site date from around 80 million years ago. The untouched and pristine condition of the fossils makes for an impressive destination. It is also a great spot for photos with the blue skies and rocky hills in the background.
Bu Tinah Island
Bu Tinah Island is the first UNESCO-listed site or reserve in the region. Therefore, it is a must-see for nature lovers looking for beautifully preserved natural sights. Bu Tinah Island is home to various endangered species, such as the Hawksbill turtle. Other natural species that thrive on this island are Osprey, flying fish, and spotted dolphins.
Hatta is a local favorite as it is only an hour’s drive away from Dubai. And yet, that drive is worthwhile because you can marvel at one of the most pristine natural sites in Dubai. Hatta is notable for its natural pools with turquoise waters flocked by rocky mountains. Several activities await you on your visit to Hatta, such as paddle boarding, kayaking, and hiking.
During your visit, you can also check out Hatta Dam.
Al Qudra Lakes
The Al Qudra Lakes is one of the most notable natural attractions in Dubai. If you are looking for nature-loving destinations, be sure to add this to your list.
Al Qudra Lakes is the perfect destination for a relaxing day where you can enjoy a picnic while overlooking the calm lake. It is home to more than 200 bird species. Therefore, it is a popular destination for families with kids.
Wadi Ghalilah is a natural destination that is ideal for those looking for active pursuits in Dubai. While this attraction is located in Ras Al Khaimah, it is only a short drive from Dubai.
Wadi Ghalilah has earned the nickname ‘Stairway to Heaven’ because of the mountain trail that leads to stunning views. The entire trail is 1,500 meters long. It is an exhilarating trail with narrow paths, steep inclines, and dizzying cliffs. It’s not for everyone. However, it is a rewarding hike for those who can brave the treacherous terrain.
Mangrove National Park
The Mangrove National Park is another must-add destination if you are looking for natural gems in Dubai. While this park is a bit closer to Abu Dhabi than Dubai, it’s worth the drive because of the rich biodiversity in this park.
Over recent years, many construction activities have negatively impacted the mangrove population in the area. Therefore, the conservation efforts within the Mangrove National Park have been intensified to ensure that the area will be preserved for generations to come.
The park is now open to the public to encourage more visitors and spread awareness about the importance of preserving the mangroves. When you visit the park, you can enjoy various activities, such as boating, kayaking, and paddle boarding.
Al Safa Park
Al Safa Park was established in 1975 and is one of the oldest parks in the city. The park spans 64 hectares and the lush green landscape is a stark contrast to the desert landscape that Dubai is known for. This urban park is located on Sheikh Zayed Road, which makes it easily accessible.
Al Mamzar Beach Park
Dubai visitors will enjoy spending time in Al Mamzar Beach Park, especially those who are nature lovers. This beach park is located by the seaside in the neighborhood of Al Mamzar, and opened to the public in 1994. It is a favorite among tourists because of the relaxing natural views of the ocean and the beautifully maintained park right next to it.
Jumeirah Beach Park
Another natural destination in Dubai that nature lovers will surely enjoy is Jumeirah Beach Park. This one is also located beachside and it offers a calm space for you to relax. It is the best spot to escape the bustling city while relishing the view of Burj Al Arab from Afar.
If you’re looking for something more active to do, there are also jogging paths, walking trails, biking trails, and a children’s playground. There is even a football pitch located nearby. If you would like to go for a swim, there are changing spaces provided for you. It’s an excellent natural destination for the entire family and for any experience.
Dubai Miracle Garden
While the Dubai Miracle Garden is not technically a natural attraction, it is home to much natural beauty emanating from the elaborate display of various floral species and varieties. The flower garden spans a total land area of 72,000 square meters. It features millions of flowers in bloom in a rich array of colors.
You can explore a magical maze and sculptures made out of flowers. The main feature of the Dubai Miracle Garden is the Emirates aircraft constructed out of floral arrangements.